Software organizations across the globe are adopting agile testing methodologies. This is the core reason why managing test environments is becoming more challenging. Business requirements are changing and evolving with time. You need a solid and superior IT environment management strategy to ensure that you deliver high-quality, error-free products promptly. Furthermore, it also has impacted the test cases and smooth coordination. Quick communication among the teams and other stakeholders is highly crucial.
Optimizing costs and accelerating the speed of the delivery are two crucial goals of the IT departments. You can achieve both of these goals by employing available IT environment management tools. Other methodologies such as automation and virtualization of testing and continuous integration and continuous delivery.
On top of all, designing a strategy to manage IT environments in an agile methodology is the need of the hour. In this post, we will discuss how to design one.
Mapping the Strategy
Test Environment Management is the process of using validated, stable, and usable test environments to execute test scenarios. Most of the time, organizations don’t know the full potential of IT test environment management. Poorly managing test environments results in higher operational costs, poor quality of the final product, and no or lower availability of test environments.
Also, when an organization migrates from a traditional way of testing the product to an agile environment. The reason is simple. A single project running in an agile methodology will have multiple releases and multiple iterations. As the IT test environment manager, you need to offer a test environment that is highly configured. It is a challenging task and you need to ensure that the process runs smoothly.
Some of the components of a robust IT environment management strategy are discussed below:
Service Integration by Creating a Unified Team Model
Managing IT environments in the agile methodology is quite challenging as teams need to manage different IT environments until all the iterations are finished. Also, the agile testing methodology needs on-demand provisioning and the right configurations. A unified test environment management model with the help of IT environment management tools ensures seamless communication and coordination between teams.
Here, the model also allows stakeholders to establish a single point of contact for any types of requirements and other activities. During all the activities such as test infrastructure management, test data management, deployment, and communication, there will be seamless coordination among teams to speed up the process and to save operational costs.
Holistic Environment Management in an Agile World
If you want to build a seamless IT environment management model for your organization, you need to first understand the elements of test environments. There are two layers of the test environment lifecycle:
Application and Operations layer
Now, the test environment team must have complete ownership of these two layers. The teams need to conduct all the activities such as environment provisioning, allocation of resources and environments to other teams, support and maintenance, and environmental clean-up and other activities.
Service Automation: Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery
One of the most noticeable things about agile testing is that each release program has multiple releases and they generate a working product at the end of each iteration. Here, test environments have specific demands that must be met by the environment management team and it is the most challenging task for the team.
Multiple iterations also increase the volume of work and the number of changes in product development. To save time and costs, the team needs to increase the automation footprint in all facets of the delivery process. There is no manual intervention so there are no errors and other issues with the product.
Service automation will also ensure quick ROI generation and reduce errors and bugs in the final product. The organizational efficiency and speed of the testing process will also improve.
Service Optimization: Adherence to Best Practices
TEM managers must understand the existing test environment model and map it to the test environment strategy document to get the best outcomes. Best service optimization practices ensure that they align well with ITIL standards. Understanding the existing operating model before designing the strategy will help them to come up with the best strategy.
The demand for the agile testing model is increasing in the IT sphere and organizations are under pressure to manage their IT environments proficiently and accurately. You need to have superior communication and coordination between teams to get the best out of them. Service integration, service automation, and service optimization are three key areas that you need to work on to design a strategy for the best IT environment management. This way, you can develop sustainable test environments that can adapt to agile methodologies.