Case Study: Application Lifecycle Management
Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) refers to the design, specification, development, and testing of software applications. ALM encompasses the whole lifecycle, from idea conception, development, testing, support, deployment, and the ultimate retirement of systems (Ferreira, 2017). Ideally, it is an umbrella term, which comprises several disciplines that were conventionally regarded as distinct, including development, requirements management, project management, quality assurance, and testing. For that reason, ALM tools offer a standardized platform for collaboration and communication between software development teams and linked departments, such as operations and test. ALM, therefore, automates the process of software development and delivery. The importance of ALM to organizations rides on the need for efficiently integrated teams that function collaboratively to define requirements, plan releases, test products, whilst deploying seamless aspects of software development that lacked in the traditional approaches.
Chosen Product: Version One
For the team atSifers-Grayson, VesrionOne, produced by CollabNet, is an ideal ALM tool. Version One comes with a wide range of features and remote navigation capabilities for the team to collaborate seamlessly.
Features and Capabilities
Testing Support. VersionOne supports a number of test methodologies, including agile, exploratory, functional, manual, and automatic testing.
Centralization and Organization. This tool is equipped with features for creating, centralizing, organizing, and managing test cases more effectively and efficiently. Also, it can easily draw test cases from Excel along with other management tools. Creating multiple versions of test cases, this tool is useful in comparison, sprints, and planning of releases.
Managing and Tracking Progress. Supports build-outs and re-runs of test execution suites.
The tool has the ability of initializing the automation suite. Capturing the step-by-step progress of sprints, detailed descriptions of releases are feasible (CollabNet VersionOne). Moreover, it supports daily progress as well as individual contribution.
Notification and Power Search. VersionOne allows emails to be delivered to particular task modules and users. Another advantage is the ability to vote and review progress of all stakeholders. The search functionality is powerful given the inclusion of hotkeys. Incorporating free text and syntax search, this tool enables developers to interrogate corresponding databases accordingly.
Reporting. The tool accommodates multiple reports coupled with support for Burndown, Test Trends and Velocity. Using this tool, developers can generate detailed summary reports for release, projects, and sprints. Supporting cross project report, it makes it easy to track the workload of the whole team and individuals as well.
Data Recovery. VersionOne is helpful in generating and downloading entire systems backups. With features to export data into XML, Excel, and CSV, VersionOne migrates and imports data from legacy data tools.
Integration. Supporting more than 80 in-built integration modules, VersionOne allows applications to connect with different vendors (Wright&Erkes, 2012). A variety of add-ins makes VersionOne a universal ALM tool across the globe. Added to this mix is the support for Microsoft, Zendesk, and Salesforce.
The first disadvantage of the tool is pricing, which raises the cost of acquisition. Also, VersionOne can be very clicky due to absence of some shortcuts. Apart from a clunky interface due to add-ons, the tool is inherently slow, delaying the loading of huge backlogs.
Supporting Cybersecurity at Sifers-Grayson
- In order to monitor networks and prevent misuse of network-accessible resources, Version implements a number of controls.
- Deployment of industry-leading firewalls and intrusion management systems
- Performing regularly schedules application patches and upgrades
- Adoption of 24X7X365 system management and monitoring
- Conducting around the clock network and firewall monitoring
- Continuous logging of firewalls to maintain traffic patterns and locate unusual activity
- Routine testing of network vulnerability
- VersionOne includes server security policies for security and availability of servers as outlined.
- Hardening all operating systems to obliterate all unnecessary applications
- Routine review of services and patches
- Ensuring that all devices conform to strict password policies, such as strong password protection
- Performing routine server vulnerability tests
- Configuring all servers with in-built redundancy elements for storage area networks and high performance.
Application security is incorporated to limit unauthorized access to applications through the following measures.
- VersionOne requires users to verify themselves with passwords and usernames to gain access to critical data resources.
- All requests relayed to VersionOne are encrypted with the use of industry’sSecure Socket Layer (SSL).
- Digital signatures for identification tokens
- VersionOne conducts continuous application vulnerability and penetration tests using industry’s leading web solutions, ensuring that application and network environments are secure.
From the synopsis, VersionOne is useful in visualizing and planning what activities ought to be done, tracking them across portfolios and programs, releases, and predicting the value to clients. Also, it allows end-to-end visibility, enabling developers to make decisions on new plans, change issues, and comprehend the overall needs of the organization. Visibility ensures that teams are aligned to business goals through team-level execution, which guarantees that projects stay on course.Ultimately, VersionOne increases agility in order to respond quickly to emerging opportunities and adaptations in projects. The resultant agility enhances business continuity by giving stakeholders methods of capturing, planning, collaborating, and tracking progress across portfolios.
CollabNet VersionOne. Largest and longest-running
agile survey in the world. Retrieved from https://www.collab.net/products/versionone.
Ferreira, F., Faria, J., Azevedo, A., & Marques, A. L. (2017). Product lifecycle management in knowledge intensive collaborative environments: An application to automotive industry. International Journal of Information Management, 37(1), 1474-1487.
Wright, S., &Erkes, C. (2012). Application Lifecycle Management. In Pro SharePoint 2010 Governance (pp. 263-278). Apress.
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