The results of a global survey of 1,000 IT professionals focused on IT trends and outlooks pertaining to application development practices have uncovered the level of success respondents feel their companies have with various Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) processes, including demand management, requirements management, application development and also release management. The conclusion: IT should forget about development because its core processes are not an issue.
Even with the dramatic influx of new technologies into the application development process — such as cloud and mobile computing — IT organisations are largely successful with development. However, it is the “bookend” processes of requirements management and release management that tell a different story. Survey respondents consistently scored these two processes lowest (the scale was a one to four rating with four being the best). In fact, respondents cite deploying applications on time without issues as the biggest impediment to overall ALM success.
Most software expenditures take place in the operations and post-deployment phase, so getting release management right early on is critical. The rise of DevOps to improve the transition from development to production has gained popularity in recent years and not only because of Agile development, but also because the proliferation of production environments. A key finding from the survey indicates IT organisations should focus more on DevOps to bridge the development and operations divide.
The three key themes that came out of the survey include:
IT is doing very well with application development: Even with an increasingly complex technology landscape, overall IT is doing very well with development. While there’s always room for improvement, IT should look at extending Agile practices across the entire application lifecycle and “forget” about development.
IT struggles with delivering quality requirements: According to market research, 33 percent of development costs are wasted because of poor requirement practices. Yet managing requirements had the lowest overall score in the global survey. IT organisations need to invest more in requirements processes, not more tools, to help everyone share requirements across a complex technology and organisational landscape.
Releasing applications on time is a major challenge: IT organisations should revisit their deployment process and find the right balance between speed and control in order to ensure they can repeatedly, quickly and confidently deploy their applications.
Serena’s complimentary “IT Trends and Outlooks: Why IT Should Forget About Development” report can be downloaded at http://www.serena.com/docs/repository/alm-benchmark/Serena-ALM-Benchmark-Survey-Report.pdf.
As part of the announcement, Serena is making a new online assessment tool available to ITprofessionals who want to benchmark their application development and delivery processes against all the survey respondents. IT professionals will be able to compare specific ALM processes to industry peers and receive personalised recommendations. The Serena IT Benchmark for Application Development can beaccessed at: www.serena.com/alm-benchmark.
While most software delivery organisations today appear to have the right tools, roles and functions in place, the biggest challenge is automating and orchestrating these disparate elements toward gaining new efficiencies across all of IT and making the whole lifecycle more agile. Serena’s unique orchestrated approach applies process automation to the application delivery supply chain, allowing software developers and ops teams to work more effectively and reduce the challenges of siloed project teams working with multiple tools and methodologies.
“The results of our application development survey offer invaluable insight into the areas of IT that are doing well, and where more work is needed,” said Miguel Tam, senior product marketing manager for Serena Software. “In addition to learning about continued problems pertaining to application releases, we learned that IT also struggles with poor requirements. The issue is at the front and back-end of development, and these findings are consistent across all industries surveyed. They prove that IT is nailing the development of what the customer asks for, but actually getting that into the customer’s hand is a different story. It’s clear that IT should focus on making the entire application lifecycle more lean and more agile moving forward.”