End-to-end continuous processes play a large role in Agile development. With a streamlined workflow that accounts for integration, testing, and deployment, development teams can get their products out to market more efficiently. The end-to-end continuous process includes three aspects:
- Continuous integration
- Continuous delivery and deployment
- Continuous testing
Each level of the process can operate independently. Often times, teams only make use of one or two of these processes. However, a combination of all three can optimize your value stream.
Changing code on a website goes through a step-by-step process in continuous integration. With multiple developers working on one project, each developer can merge their code into a central repository. We use Git has our central repository; this includes branches that move code through development, staging, and production. At the staging branch, a project manager can test the website’s functionality before it gets pushed to production. This way, any chance of breaking the build can be resolved before it goes live to the client.
Not only does this process allow developers to catch issues ahead of time, but it also allows lead developers a chance to review code and offer any feedback to junior coders. In addition, revision control and automation ensure that every developer is held accountable and multiple code changes can be integrated in a more efficient matter.
Continuous Delivery & Deployment
Following integration, continuous delivery and deployment allow developers to automate the deployment process. In this workflow, multiple steps are taken to ensure every part of the application checks out. If there’s an error in any test, developers are promptly notified.
Similar to integration, this part of the end-to-end continuous process hold developers accountable for their own code. Consequentially, each developer can resolve errors without restrictions from another team member. This allows code to be readily deployable while also ensuring high-quality and best practices.
The final, and arguably most important, step to and end-to-end implementation, is continuous testing. While most teams utilize continuous integration and delivery, continuous testing often gets overlooked. Without testing, quality and efficient delivery to market occur. Continuous testing takes a look at all aspects of the application including integration, performance, security, etc. This can also be applied to microservices. Since services in this environment live in multiple containers, continuous testing allows you to test each aspect of the application at the unit level.
Why It’s Important
A thorough implementation of an end-to-end continuous process takes all three of these workflows into consideration. Not only does it make changing and implementing code easier on developers, but also gets your product out to clients in a more efficient manner, without skimping on quality. Developers will have the ability to provide feedback and collaborate with other team members, while also being accountable for his/her own features.
Since testing has always been such a time-consuming process, development teams often do everything they can to get through the process so that they can deliver the product. This most certainly causes issues down the road when a bug is detected after the application has gone live. With continuous testing, debugging happens earlier and ultimately reduces the testing effort.
It’s important to ensure that this strategy is right for your team. Each of these processes can be implemented at once, and your team can take baby steps into automating the deployment process. Sevaa Group makes use continuous integration and deployment thanks to Git. We often use Cypress to implement continuous end-to-end testing as well. Talk to us about how we can help you streamline your business the way we’ve done ours.