Before I continue with the ALM cycle, I just wanted to end Black History Month with saying thank you to those before us that helped paved the way for freedom, inventions and much more! I am inspired by their courage and ambition to take a stand and make a change so that I can have the opportunities that I do now!
Now! Jumping back into our wonderful ALM cycle let me give a quick recap of the prior steps:
• Phase 1 covers planning which is where specifications (requirements) are gathered from the customer(owner) of the project so that everyone knows EXACTLY what is taking place.
• Phase 2 is where all hands (marketing, sales, support, developers, testers, etc.) are brought together to review the specifications and tie together a process of what will take place to get the project done. During this time, testers would also formulate what needs to be tested.
• Phase 3 is all about TESTING! The ultimate goal of testing is to determine if the application is working as design even after enhancements or updates are done. Integration Testing, System Testing, and Acceptance Testing are just a few of the components of testing.
• Phase 4 is (to me) one of the most critical steps in this entire process: Implementation. According to TechTarget,
“Implementation is the carrying out, execution, or practice of a plan, a method, or any design, idea, model, specification, standard or policy.”
Implementation involves everything that you have planned in Phases 1-3 which is why it is important to know exactly what you want and how the system must respond. Most would think implementation begins AFTER testing is complete but, implementation should run parallel with testing. Below are a list of Implementation Steps that should be taken for success(TechRepublic):
1. Prepare the Infrastructure: This step would include reviewing current hardware and software to ensure that the changes that need to be made can withhold with the current infrastructure. This should have already been reviewed when testing took place beginning that the testing was preformed to TEST what’s being implemented.
2. Coordinate with Organizations Involved with Implementation: If Phase 2 was administered properly, the list of individuals needed for implementation already exists! Now all that has to be done is to coordinate with the individuals to make sure the work and support is done when it is time to implement.
3. Implementation Training: Depending on what is being implemented, end users may need to attend training on the new system or change. This training should be done in advance so that the users will be prepared prior to implementation.
4. Install the Product Solution and Convert Data: In this step, you must make sure all production components are implemented successfully, including new hardware, databases, and program code. Data conversion, changing data from one format to another, needs to take place once the infrastructure and the solution are implemented as well.
5. Perform final verification in Production: Most technical users may call this step “Post Implementation Verification” where verification by development staff and end users will take place to ensure that the system is functioning as expected.
The most vital step of all during implementation is to have a clear and very consistent “Rollback” plan just encase the system is not working as expected. Documentation during every point during the deployment of a change should take place so you can stop deployment and return to a known-good state if implementation doesn’t produce the functionality as originally designed(Peerlyst). It is necessary to have this plan!
One more phase to go and our ALM cycle will be complete! See Ya Next Thursday! 😊