With our expansion into Application Lifecycle Management (ALM), we’ve talked about different issues dealing with the SDLC portion. That is only a portion of the larger picture that is ALM. Not only does it deal with the initial development stages, it also extends to the operational and governance stages to cover all aspects of an application form inception until obsolescence.
This means that a company should not only be worried about the earlier stages of the application (Developments) but other issues such as the tools utilized to enable the ALM (IDEs, Testing software), the overall governance of the process (Methodologies used, processes involved). Some key areas and tips to take note of are as follows.
Vendors supplying your tools. Without the appropriate tools the entire process can be in danger of failing, and as such ensuring the right vendor is used becomes crucial. Vendors need to be researched to ensure their ability to continue supporting your tools and on top of this multiple vendors should be considered and kept as backups to ensure a smooth procurement process.
Ensure the ALM process is developed by the parties involved to utilize processes familiar, and tools which are most favored. It is no good for a company to force their personnel to operate with tools that are unfamiliar leading to increased problems (slower working pace, increase bugs). This is much easier implemented in smaller companies, where as in larger companies tools and processes may be set in stone therefore requiring new hires to be hired based on their history with the currently used processes and tools.
Tools and processes should not just work to enable collection of information but to work towards promoting collaboration. This means that tools need to be able to work with one another to pass on information to one process to another to be utilized – Vendors try to circumvent this issue by providing solutions that can cover multiple aspects of ALM but in reality companies may use multiple products to cover their ALM. The issue of companies being spread out geographically is another challenge in ensuring all information gathered is distributed and shared appropriately. Maintaining strict guidelines as to what tools should be used and enforced as part of the daily activities is necessary.