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10 Tools For Effective DevOps Collaboration

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Introduction:

There are DevOps tools that help you real good during your Requirements Gathering, Development, Testing or even during Deployment but apart from these are the important tools where team members (either from the same location or if they are spread across the globe) need to communicate and also collaborate. These tools are required for your team members to communicate effectively and efficiently, share work, keep up with the tight schedules and also to track the progress on the scheduled tasks.

Bringing in the collaboration complexity might grow exponentially when you try bringing both development and operations together. Fortunately, there are enough number of options available in the market that the Managers can choose from. Having said that, we will take a closer look into at least the top 10 of these tools which help Organizations implementing DevOps. There are a number of advantages of each of these tools but then fitting all your needs might not be the case always. Hope that the exhaustive listing provides you all the information that you look for here.

Inclined to build a profession as DevOps Developer? Then here is the blog post on DevOps Training Online.

Types of Collaboration DevOps Tools:

Each of these Collaboration DevOps tools have their own uses, advantages, implementations and drawbacks. It is for sure that these might not fit in every other Organization but these need to be carefully gone through and then a decision to be taken. Let us not delay these any further and go through all of these:

Related Page: Introduction to DevOps Tools

1. Rational DOORS Next Generation (DNG):

IBM Rational DOORS Next Generation, formerly known as Telelogic DOORS can be mentioned to be as a Requirements Management tool that helps optimize communication, collaboration and also verification of requirements. It captures the requirements first and then keeps a track of all the changes to requirements complying with all the regulations and standards. The Project scope management can be pretty easily improved with the use of DOORS Next Generation.

Following are some of the advantages of using IBM Rational DOORS Next Generation, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • Increased Satisfaction is justified with all the discussions and collaboration to come to a conclusion on a solid requirement for your Project
  • Compliance management towards all the regulations and standards of Requirements gathering process
  • Engineering efficiency can be improved further by concentrating on to provide seamless experience on user experience and as well as design standards
  • With the advent of cloud, you can accelerate time to value with the cloud offerings
  • Provides its support for all domains of requirement (be it Agile, lean, SAFe, Continuous engineering or DevOps).

2. Rational Team Concert (RTC):

IBM’s Rational Team Concert (RTC) is a perfect tool that manages the capabilities as like planning tasks, projects, statuses and along with it also the collaborative change management. Flexibility towards process adaption is one of the best traits that RTC provides for organizations’ to decide on their release cycles and dependencies. If this tool is purchased in conjunction with the other tools from IBM as a suite, then it becomes a complete Collaborative Lifecycle Management solution with IBM Rational Team Concert, IBM Rational Quality Manager and IBM Rational DOORS Next Generation. This solution is available on-premise and also on cloud.

Following are some of the advantages of using IBM Rational Team Concert, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • Rational Team Concert (RTC) is configurable and hence can be configured to match your own processes
  • One other major advantage in using RTC is the seamless integration that it provides with Rational Requirements Composer (for Requirements gathering) and also with Rational Quality Manager (for software testing).
  • The other advantages of RTC are task tracking, source code control and also agile sprints planning

3. Bitbucket Server:

Atlassian’s offering in the form of Bitbucket Server is a combination of GIT server and web interface product. It is usually a web-based hosting solution that is targeted for projects which use either of Mercurial or GIT version control systems. This tool is specifically developed for the professional teams, as it not just enables users to code but also to manage and collaborate on GIT projects.

Following are some of the advantages of using Bitbucker Server, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • BitBucket provides a distributed control system that allows easiest of collaboration between the users and also enables massive scaling. 
  • BitBucket also boasts of providing unlimited private and public repositories.
  • BitBucket also provides granular permissions and hence the Workflow feature of it is pretty secure
  • Provides a provision to integrate with the leading business applications as like Bamboo, JIRA, and HipChat. This also helps the users to work efficiently and productively.

4. Pivotal Tracker:

Pivotal Tracker, a Software as a Service (SaaS) product that is targeted towards Agile Project Management and also for Collaboration. It is a user-friendly, story based Project Management application that best suites the Agile projects for software development teams to work together. It is built based on the proven Agile methods, which is derived from experience on thousands of large-scale commercial software development projects.

Pivotal Tracker provides similar access to everyone and as well as provides the real-time updates of the project to everyone, which enables the right direction to proceed further. All details of the project can easily be accessed and as well shared with others, allowing the developers to concentrate on what’s required of them rather than creating unnecessary reports about their work in actual.

Following are some of the advantages of using Pivotal Tracker, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • As its tagline suggests, Pivotal Tracker is designed to help companies develop better software faster by simplifying the collaboration process and helping teams to easily identify priorities.
  • Total control over their projects via absolute visibility.
  • Clear and effective lines of communications that help team members share their concerns and documents of any type to other members, either specifically or generally.
  • Streamlined workflows that are optimized for efficient, integrated story estimating, and adopting and implementing agile processes.

5. Atlassian Confluence:

Confluence, an offering from Atlassian is a Content and Team Collaboration software that is the new way how the modern teams are supposed to work together. You can create, share and even collaborate on projects and doing all of this at just one place – Confluence. You can easily publish and organize company information at a central location. This can even be used to increase and also to share the knowledge that colleagues have on the processes that they work on.

Following are some of the advantages of using Confluence, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • As described earlier, Confluence is a content based platform that helps teams to create and share knowledge amongst coworkers which is very much required for the necessary work to be done at a quicker pace.
  • Confluence is a wonderful place to create / organize rich content using the projects from JIRA. You can organize your Meeting notes, Project plans, Requirement documents, Concept notes, discussions, Release notes, Project roadmaps and so on so forth.
  • Atlassian provides a SSO feature so that you can access your JIRA content in Confluence, thereby giving a right picture of your development processes to the right stakeholders.
  • You will be able to manage each version and also manage each change that your teammate makes on a specific Confluence page
  • You will be able to control the access to content by providing granular permissions to your pages.

                       Check Out DevOps Tutorials

6. Atlassian JIRA:

JIRA from Atlassian is a great Project Management software and at the very same time can also be a very strong Collaboration tool that can be used in an Organization. It is a software tool designed uniquely to capture, assign and prioritize tasks for the betterment of the Project execution. It has one of the simple and intuitive interface that helps any one with almost no knowledge to gain a grip over it in no time.

JIRA is the most trusted tool that is used in the areas of Collaboration and also Project Management from the likes of Spotify, eBay, Cisco and LinkedIn. It can simply be used to plan, track and assign tasks for better sprints and further to have better releases all together. That being said, JIRA also offers real-time, visual data reports to boost team performance.

Following are some of the advantages of using JIRA, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • It is the best and the most powerful Project Management and Collaboration equipped system of the day, with a plethora of unique features and functionalities.
  • JIRA, an agile system that can fit in any of the niches or industries has evolved itself as a highly configurable and customizable produce over the past few years. With his rich set of features, and also the adoption of Agile, Scrum, Kanban and the hybrid models – any project implementation can be launched LIVE with it.
  • JIRA an active source of all your Project Management related queries can also act as a regulatory evidence at every stage of the whole process. JIRA provides the big picture to all the members of the team, hence everyone has a fair idea about their responsibilities and ensures that these are performed in time for a successful implementation of the Project all by itself.
  • As JIRA has all the necessary details from your Organization, you can make use of the available out of the box templates to perform the read analysis, statistical investigations and also prepare constructive reports for your own Organization’s reporting hierarchy.
  • Provision of JQL (JIRA Query Language) will make JIRA no longer a ticketing system but also a data hub and with the integration of JIRA and BitBucket, GitHub – it also enables you to provide backlog to deployment traceability.
  • The deployment options are pretty flexible and based on the need of the Organization, you can go from On Premise to On Demand in a jiffy.
  • Its connectivity is totally unparalleled as it provides REST and Java APIs for custom implementations, provides a huge set of readymade applications in its Marketplace.
  • Provision of mobile applications via Android and iOS, which are as strong as the desktop version or the on premise versions of the system.

7. Micro Focus Project and Portfolio Management:

Micro Focus' innovative Project and Portfolio Management solution is targeted to help executives to overcome their challenges in providing the most critical information in real-time which helps PMO to take the right decision. It provides a robust Work breakdown structure (WBS), but for those individuals who still prefer to use Microsoft Project as a WBS tool, the tool has been refreshed PPM-MSP integration. Now Project and Portfolio Management can read MSP files directly without any need for any additional plug-in. The key objective in doing all of this is to bring the projects and also the program information together under a single umbrella.

Following are some of the advantages of using Micro Focus Project and Portfolio Management, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • Ensures focus on what matters, hence robust data insight is achieved
  • Provides a provision to take advantage of the what-if scenarios to determine the mix of deliverables versus investments
  • Provides out of the box integration with the leading agile tools as like ALM Octane, Agile Manager, CA Rally, Atlassian JIRA and the like
  • Let’s you manage your program and project requests efficiently, provides the perfect understanding of the possible risks and resource spills for Project completion / success
  • Provides a flexible workflow that enables process automation throughout with the help of integrated modules
  • It offers hell load of out of the box integrations and also provides an Open API to enable data transfers from other applications

Related Page: What is DevOps Automation?

8. Microsoft Teams:

It is basically a chat based workspace for Office 365, which lets colleagues of an Organization to keep in touch with each other and build the necessary collaboration and relationships as required. Teams provides a unique feature of providing private, group and channel based conversations amongst the colleagues to keep up with the privacy, security and safety of the information intact. The project team members or the colleagues can go back and also take a look at these conversations as the Project progresses forward too.

Following are some of the advantages of using Microsoft Teams, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • Communication with the collaborating members is real-time, the experience cannot be beaten by the others
  • Provides a customizable workspace as every team is different – an example of this can be provided as the communication from Twitter being received on Teams for the Sales teams in your Office
  • Since the collaboration here on Teams is chat-based, it ensures that all the participants are on the same page rather than split conversations over emails or the other mediums of communication / collaboration.
  • Microsoft Teams has a wonderful integration with the applications as like Office 365, Skype for audio and visual calls.
  • Microsoft Teams comes from the operational side on the DevOps implementation in an Organization, and the powerful backing that it has makes it the best choice for a Collaboration DevOps tool implementation in any given Organization.
  • Teams provides support to over 18 languages as of now and this is going to increase only

9. Slack:

Be it the development space or in social gatherings, it is the poster child for all the modern day collaboration with the near universal platform support and also the group chat functionality provided by the tool Slack itself. The “freemium” business model has made it pretty familiar to most of the users even before they encounter this it in in a business setting. One of the main driving force that any Organization would love to have is the transparency and also a great foundation for any development team to collaborate in.

Following are some of the advantages of using Slack, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • Teams can organize communications via various channels for groups and individuals
  • They can send direct messages, make audio / video calls and everything from the same platform
  • Slack provides a provision to a feature that makes users call for it is – inline replies
  • One of the other main advantages of Slack is its mobile versatility – the provision of it being accessed from your smart phones.
  • It is a wonderful tool to tear down all the barriers and give an entire team the needed access to the DevOps flow.

10. Basecamp:

One of the main reasons Organization have adopted it as their collaboration medium and haven’t thought of leaving it is built around a project management model. To be very specific, it has the chat feature (with the Campfire module) and a threaded chat message board to lure others but the other features as like the to-do and calendar functions was over the top. All of these features are weaved into a perfect collaboration medium via the tool Basecamp itself. One of the points to note here is that there is no “freemium” model to this, but there is a provision to use a free trial for a certain period of time.

Following are some of the advantages of using Basecamp, let us now take a look at each and every one of them:
Advantages:

  • Organizing projects and communication is no more a messy job with the to-do functions / lists, schedules and chats from Basecamp.
  • Basecamp makes it really easy to browse through all the available discussions at just one place.
  • It provides a provision to go through all the to-do activities at one place again.
  • All the forwarded mails along with the documents that each of these mails has come with are all shown at one single place, for the team members to get a perfect view of the email conversation rather than cluttering the information in to different sections and confusing them further.
  • It also provides an open API for the users who want to design their own 3rd party integrations with Basecamp.

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Conclusion:

In this article we have seen how DevOps implementation in Organizations can be taken to the next level with the introduction of the necessary Collaboration DevOps tools, we have further discussed about the most useful list of Collaboration DevOps tools available in the market as on date. Along with the tools and their implementations, we have also taken some time discussing about the advantages of each of these Collaboration DevOps tools, if implemented in an Organization as such. Hope you’ve got all the information that you wanted on Collaboration DevOps tools here.

Please do provide us your feedback in the form of the suggestions or comments, for us to improve the quality of the articles.


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