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The Basics of Agile Application Lifecycle Management (ALM)

The fast-growing environment we live in is bringing new inventions every day. There’s a constant need for new technologies, software development and better ways of achieving our business goals.

The consistently growing need for the development of new software has got us searching for the best solution. The practice in application development that attracted the attention of many is the Agile Application Lifecycle Management (ALM). 

Development teams praise the method for multiple reasons, which tickle our interest to learn more about it. 

What stands behind the practices of Agile ALM? Let’s find out.

Source: bankingandlloyds.com

What is Agile Application Lifecycle

Management (ALM)?

The environment in which application lifecycle management develops is getting more complex. The increasing number of technologies, shortcuts to release apps quicker, the increasing amount of customization, continuous change, etc. can lead us to a big tangled mess.

Agile’s first principle – “people over tools” – is exactly what ALM needed to perfect the practices. When we combine Agile development techniques within ALM, we get a process of software development where communication borders are removed, and shorter iteration of review and development are introduced at the same time. Agile frameworks, strategies, and values are integrated within ALM for the best result. 

Agile ALM isn’t restricted to specific phases of software development. As the name suggests, it encompasses the whole lifecycle of application management. That includes design, deployment, development, testing, release, etc. The focus is to spread the agile principles across all areas.

There are numerous key phases of Agile ALM, but these are the key ones:

  • Task-based development
  • Functional and technical release management
  • Collaborative development
  • Quality assurance and stakeholder focus

Agile ALM accepts the necessary changes all in favor of creating healthy and productive relationships between people and organizations. Teams are able to react more promptly to changes and reorganize accordingly.

It is clear that Agile ALM’s primary focus isn’t the tools but the people. They are trusted to lead their portion of the work and therefore have to deliver high accountability. The flexibility of the open framework of Agile ALM allows adding more functions if necessary. All of this transforms the company into a holistic value delivery system.

Agile Principles

For a better understanding of how Agile helps with ALM and why this unification came into existence, we should revise its main principles. Agile Manifesto states four principles of Agile Software Development:

  • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools 
  • Working software over comprehensive documentation
  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
  • Responding to change over following a plan
Source: toolsqa.com

Agile ALM aims to respect and follow these principles through the application lifecycle management. That combination of emphasized human element and communication with technological development is what makes this method successful. 

The ways in which Agile ALM adopted the principles within the traditional ALM are the following:

  • 1st principle of Agile in ALM – Instead of solely focusing on steps that will lead to finishing the software, Agile ALM prefers cross-functional team collaboration.
  • 2nd principle of Agile in ALM – Traditional ALM includes extensive documentation while Agile adds the component that prioritizes fast and quality release. 
  • 3rd principle of Agile in ALM – Requirement free request for bug fixes is replaced with focusing on customer feedback and getting to know the exact features that need adaptation. 
  • 4th principle of Agile in ALM – ALM is traditionally led by an initially composed plan while Agile ALM responds to change and therefore makes the team more productive and attentive to delivering the right functionality. 

By implementing the main principles in ALM, companies get a streamlined lifecycle of application management. The flexibility that comes with Agile development techniques allows the company, for example, to check the writing services reviews if they need additional help for content creation and not to struggle while trying to keep up with the plan.  

Benefits of Implementing Agile ALM

Agile ALM has many advantages. It is a somewhat new concept, and it is adapted to modern application management practices. Some of the benefits you can expect from implementing Agile ALM are:

  • Quicker releases along with delivering quality 
  • Cost reduction
  • Organized team collaboration
  • Improved communication across teams
  • Increase in productivity
  • Prioritized customer needs
  • Redundancy elimination
  • Making application development fun
  • A practical approach to coding and deployment

It is obvious that Agile ALM will speed up and perfect the process of software development. This way, teams can get more work done in less time and establish a steady communication flow that will benefit every member.

In addition, the cost reduction will allow developers to invest more in quality equipment and tools, instead of the lengthy process of finishing the task.

How Do Teams Benefit from Agile ALM?

Another major advantage of implementing Agile ALM is that every member of the team benefits by following this approach.

Agile ALM allows team members to:

  • be creative and come up with their own solution and ideas, instead of following a plan blindly
  • socialize and collaborate more, learning how to be a part of a high-functioning team
  • learn how to listen to their customers and use their feedback to improve the final product

Agile ALM will benefit the team members, making them more efficient, creative, and thus beneficial for the company.

Source: ntaskmanager.com

Why Do Agile ALM Principles need

to be Internalized?

Agile ALM principles need to be internally embedded and accepted – they have to be effectively established through manpower, tools, processes, and culture. This is the only way in which you can gain consistency across the whole development process.

The releases will be technically and functionally consistent only if engineering processes that comprise development cycles are aligned with Agile ALM. You will be able to track the development progress by linking, organizing, and referencing activities. With the internalization of Agile ALM principles, you can overcome functional and technological barriers and implement a consistent development process.  

Agile ALM can bring some notable transformation in the development of the software project. The principles need to be respected, and the Agile ALM needs to be properly implemented to achieve the desired result and reap all the benefits of this development technique.