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How to handle devops tasks which may take more than 1/2 day but are not framed by user value?

Often especially at the start of a software product there are a lot of tasks for the team to refine that have to do with set up, access, or foundational process/deliverables. How are these tasks—which may take more than half a day but are not framed in direct user value—defined? And who can most appropriately define them?