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HP Software's community for IT leaders // March 2012

Better apps management: Leading your team to ALM

Developers often are resistant to application lifecycle management, but a platform that lets them continue to use their preferred tools can benefit the entire organization.

As apps teams work to develop, test and release code faster than ever, it’s becoming more important to have a management platform for application lifecycle management(ALM). ALM increases control, visibility and predictability for the process of building modern applications, and it enables communication across disparate teams.

But developers often are resistant to participating in ALM, because they prefer to continue using their own tools and processes, and a forced introduction of new tools and processes will only harm productivity. Yet without developers’ cooperation, ALM cannot deliver all of its promised benefits.

What enterprises need is an end-to-end ALM solution that provides a common management platform to be shared by all project stakeholders—one that allows individual development teams to continue using their tools and processes of choice. By introducing lightweight processes and tools that let developers work in a familiar environment, it becomes possible to get everyone on board with a solution that will ultimately benefit the entire organization and facilitate faster, better coding.

An ALM platform well-suited to apps teams should enable:

  • Context-driven development: Developers should be able to view ALM artifacts directly in their favorite IDE while coding.
  • Context-driven reporting: The ALM system should automatically update as the developer codes without requiring a separate process to report completed work.
  • Risk prioritization: Developers must be able to see what code was changed so they can focus testing resources on top-priority—often high-risk—components first.
  • Predictability of work: Testers should know what code is ready to move from development to testing, the content of a new build, and the functionality of the new build.
  • Governance: Source code version control systems don’t link changes to business justification. An ALM platform should control and monitor changes based on the business requirements that motivated them.
  • Freedom of choice: Developers should be able to work in a transparent and traceable way, regardless of their tools.
  • A single system of record: Data integrated into a single system simplifies work for management, testers, and developers.

Treat ALM as a hub to unify disparate solutions
The goal of any ALM platform should be to help developers work more productively, not to interrupt their well-functioning processes. A unified agile project management solution can accomplish exactly that: accelerate development by removing process bottlenecks, coordinating changes and providing real-time dashboards and updates across all projects, teams and tools. When ALM acts as a single system of record from an application’s inception to its retirement, it increases collaboration among developers and all players in the lifecycle.

For more on how ALM is evolving and how to introduce it to developers, read the white paper “Shorten Release Cycles by Bringing Developers to ALM.” Visit HP’s ALM Development Management page to learn about ways to improve application quality, collaboration and productivity.


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