February 24, 2014

Five Habits of Highly Successful Continuous Delivery Practitioners

Continuous Delivery
Traceability

continuous delivery

For all the talk about Continuous Delivery these days, it can be hard to find best practices from the companies that are actually doing it.

Because Continuous Delivery puts additional demands on the underlying versioning system, we work closely with a lot of companies who are already practicing it. To see an example, watch the Salesforce.com presentation on how they do Continuous Delivery on Perforce.

What do the most successful Continuous Delivery practitioners have in common? We’ve put together a list of 5 key things…

  1. Think beyond Code: Continuous Delivery is focused on more than just code. Every element of a product needs to be consistently versioned from development to deployment, including artwork and other binary files, chip architectures, CAD designs, documentation, configuration scripts, and more.
  2. Automate, Automate, Automate: In a highly automated environment, changes to code can be almost instantly checked for integration into the delivery package. “Failed” changes can then be immediately corrected by the development team to ensure a high level of efficiency, predictability and repeatability—key attributes to a successful Continuous Delivery approach.
  3. Make Everything Fully Visible: Stakeholders must have visibility and input into what gets built and released. Peers should participate in reviews and collectively push for a higher bar for quality.
  4. Track Every Change: Recording every change, event and transaction is hugely valuable in situations where a rollback to a previous version is required. Altering history should be prohibited, especially when compliance and industry regulations demand stringent recordkeeping.
  5. Put It All in One Place: Instead of maintaining silos of code and assets, and project-specific branches, implement a “single source of truth” for the entire production environment. If assets and artifacts are distributed in multiple locations and multiple stores, there is a risk of introducing new errors and failing to meet delivery deadlines.

But wait...there's more!

To get the full lowdown on Continuous Delivery best practices, check out our new report, “Continuous Delivery: Five Habits of Highly Successful Practitioners.