Wladimir Rezende

Continuous Delivery: How to adapt and thrive in a fast-paced business world

In today’s rapidly evolving business landscape, adaptability is critical for success. Customers expect frequent updates, new features, and high-quality products that meet their needs and preferences. Releasing software continuously and without errors is necessary to deliver value to your customers. Continuous delivery is a software development practice that enables you to do that.

Continuous delivery from a software development perspective

Continuous delivery is a software development practice where developers automatically prepare code changes for production release. It builds on continuous integration, ensuring every code change is built and tested before merging into the main branch. Continuous delivery goes one step further by deploying all code changes to testing and/or production environments after the build stage. This way, you can ensure that your software is always in a releasable state and ready for feedback.

 

Continuous delivery from a business perspective

Continuous delivery is not only a technical practice but also a business strategy. It allows you to deliver value to your customers faster and more frequently, giving you a competitive edge in the market. It also enables you to respond quickly to changing requirements and customer feedback, which can improve customer satisfaction and loyalty. Continuous delivery can also reduce the risks and costs associated with traditional software release cycles, such as delays, errors, and rework.

 

Four best practices for continuous delivery

To implement continuous delivery successfully, you must follow some best practices that can help you optimize your process and avoid common pitfalls. Here are four of them:

Practice One – Make every change releasable: To make every change releasable, you need to include not only the code but also the user documentation, operations runbooks, and information about what’s changed for auditing purposes. You must also ensure that your code follows your organization’s coding standards and conventions and passes all the quality checks and tests before deployment.

Practice two – Embrace trunk-based development: Trunk-based development is where developers work on the main branch of the code repository and avoid creating long-lived feature branches that delay integration. Every change is built, tested, and deployed together for the fastest feedback. Trunk-based development also reduces the complexity and conflicts that arise from merging branches.

Practice three – Deliver through an automated pipeline: An automated pipeline is a set of tools and processes that automate the build, test, configuration, and deployment of your software from a code repository to a production environment. At Bitboundaire, all projects under our management use Bitpitcher, our automated pipeline; this ensures we deliver customers’ software consistently and reliably without manual intervention or human error. Automated pipelines like Bitpitcher also provide visibility and traceability into the status and history of software releases.

Practice four – Automate as much as possible: Automation is the key to continuous delivery, as it minimizes the time and effort required to deliver software. It would be best to automate as many processes as possible in your software development lifecycle, not only for code builds and deployments but also for creating new development environments, security checks, performance tests, monitoring, and reporting.

Continuous delivery leading the way

Leading companies in various industries widely use continuous delivery, such as Netflix, Amazon, Facebook, Spotify, and Google. These companies use continuous delivery to deliver software updates multiple times daily or even per hour, depending on their business needs and customer feedback. They also use continuous delivery to experiment with new features and functionalities using techniques such as A/B testing, feature flags, or canary releases.

Continuous delivery is a powerful software development practice that can help you adapt and thrive in a fast-paced business world. By delivering software continuously and without errors, you can provide value to your customers faster and more frequently, respond quickly to changing requirements and feedback, reduce risks and costs associated with traditional release cycles, and improve product quality and performance. Continuous delivery is your best partner to succeed in a constantly changing world.

 

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