Benefits and Results
With any process, adding procedures is always difficult to implement. “But SmartBear Collaborator makes it easier,” says McNeill. “We can add a platform from which peer code review best practices can be formally introduced as part of application lifecycle management—with little effort and time. And the integration between Collaborator and Atlassian JIRA makes it much easier to support our new process.”
The solution also removes project-based developer dependency and creates an enterprise-centric, intelligent dependency that Corovan can apply across the development operation. This is critical in helping make sure developers adhere to standards and best practices regardless of the project. “In addition to giving us more flexibility to move developers from project-to-project when necessary, we can also more easily bring in newly-hired developers,” says McNeill.
The Corovan software team is driven by customer demand, so development timelines are always under a crunch, and there’s pressure to do more work with fewer resources. That makes it imperative to maintain a consistent coding philosophy to meet the tight deadlines.
“Our coding is also continually evolving,” McNeill adds. “We are always finding better ways to code. But we need to make sure we establish and stick to a pattern for consistency in our output. If someone wants to change a call stack going forward, there has to be a good reason, and we need to understand the impact and how we will implement the change. Using a tool like Collaborator makes it easier to achieve this objective.”
Looking ahead, McNeill projects that software projects on the horizon will get bigger and more complicated, given all the emerging technologies his team will have to take into account.
“We already have the architecture and a nice call stack in place, but it’s still a challenge to stay consistent with our coding, and that’s where Collaborator will be a big help,” says McNeill. “Developers know their code will be reviewed, so they will be more painstaking about what they code, and they will avoid taking short cuts. At the same time, when our developers come up with great ideas, we want to implement them across the board so that anyone of our developers can be put on any project and expected to deliver—without doing eight hours of research to discover what’s going on.”
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