Mobile and DevOps: Continuous change, user demand and effective collaboration
Although I am looking at development lifecycle from the perspective of mobile applications now, it wasn't that long ago that I was the Program Director for IBM Rational Jazz Lifecycle Integration platform. My teams were constantly challenged to iteratively bring new capabilities to market to keep up with the ever-changing landscape of cloud, mobile and social, which are undeniably critical influencers for even the traditional application lifecycle. The value of continuous delivery was never more applicable: use the right tools at the right time for the right purpose.
That experience is not something I left behind when I joined PointSource, an enterprise mobility firm and IBM Premier Business Partner, as the Chief Creative Officer. Among many strategic efforts, one of my first was to guide our teams of talented software developers and UX designers to use tools and processes that can support our application development lifecycle as we grow and scale. Although I had helped countless IBM clients through this same discussion to define a robust, scalable, and intentional tools roadmap, defining new processes for mobile development was like reading a favorite novel with fresh eyes. After weeks of asking self-directed teams endless questions about their tool choices, a running joke was born with our developers randomly shouting "Tools!" at me even eight months later.
And the proof points aren't only in our own organization. They present themselves almost daily through client conversations. Many clients recognize their need for an enterprise mobility strategy - so much so that they put something, anything into the mobile marketplace only to find that after a few months, developing new features and deploying them at the speed of user demand is taxing on their current infrastructure. What they don’t recognize is that they need to also plan for a mobile application development lifecycle. Business leaders look to their IT organizations to help them keep up, often after they already have something out in the market, but even IT struggles with the maintenance and the scale that is needed to continuously deliver at pace that's competitive for the business.
In terms of right tools at the right time, we've been organizing our own work and that of our clients through IBM JazzHub. The private beta projects on developerWorks offer a nimble, lightweight and convenient environment to quickly create a project on a scrum template and take advantage of the following features:
Clients have been impressed with how quickly we can get multiple organizations and stakeholders gathered in one spot to focus on common goals, align different stakeholders with related goals, and keep it all on a continuous plan and timeline. As soon as our clients see how we work, they are eager to hear about our development environment and process expertise in addition to our mobile thought leadership.
Another lesson from my work in the development lifecycle that I have been able to apply in mobile is the critical importance of standards as patterns emerge across evolving technologies. IBM’s Mobile First initiative strongly differentiates from other mobile enterprise application platforms by focusing on common standards for development, speeding the ability to learn skills and get to market. In addition to development standards, the need for open standards and linked data that supports mobile lifecycle very specifically will become vital to software integrations across the enterprise. This enables firms to keep pace with integrating to existing IT infrastructure for higher ROI as they build their highly connected mobile strategy. At PointSource we co-sponsoring the Open Services for Lifecycle Collaboration (OSLC) Mobile User Group, to learn more about these development patterns and iterate on them through realistic scenarios.
The mobile application development lifecycle is exciting because it is being driven by constant change. Using the right tools, at the right time for the right purpose is an intentional and intelligent foundation to support an effective strategy that meets the demands of continuous delivery for enterprise mobility.
How have you been able to effectively change your practices, processes or tools to bridge the gap between business and IT, while also supporting the demands of continuous delivery and leveraging the new interaction models with mobility? Leave a comment here, chat with us on Twitter, or let’s start a more in-depth conversation through our Mobility Questionnaire.
Learn more about JazzHub, an agile development environment in the cloud.
About the Authors
Stephanie Lynn Trunzo is the Chief Creative Officer for PointSource. She is focused on driving the vision statement and bringing operational excellence to this growing IBM Premier Business Partner. She had been with IBM for 13 years, most recently as Program Director for IBM Rational Jazz Lifecycle Integration Platform, a linked data-driven integration platform, expanding ALM and PLM stories.
Susan Peich is an Information Architect for PointSource. She is focused on translating client’s content requirements into appropriate information structures that meet the demand of the rapidly changing landscape of mobile apps and websites. Prior to joining PointSource, she spent nine years with IBM Rational Software as both an information architect and a digital marketing strategist.