What is Release Management? Definition, Process, and Tools

What is Release Management

Release management refers is the process of designing, scheduling, testing, deploying, controlling, and software releases. This ensures that the release teams deliver the software and updates required by the business efficiently while maintaining the integrity of the existing production environment.

Half-baked releases are not the best option in today’s dynamic and competitive world of IT and business. The modern enterprise is characterized by a dynamic environment. These changes do not happen at the same rate. IT organizations must be able to manage these many changes. deployment automation and release control are key tools. They ease the transition from continuous delivery and help you to move through the Digital Transformation, one release at a. This is IT’s new normal.

What is Release Management in ITIL

Release and Deployment management is one of the major processes in the Service Transition section under the Information Technology Infrastructure Library framework (ITIL). ITIL is the most popular framework for the governance and management of technology products. It is designed to help organizations deliver their products or services in a cost-conscious, quality-driven, and customer-centric manner.

Also read: 10 Best Change Management Tools

What is Release the Management Process?

Depending on the specific dynamics of each application or organization, the steps involved in release management may vary. The following sequence is however the most popular.

Request

Requests for new features and changes to existing functions are the first step in release management. It is not possible to guarantee that every request will be fulfilled. Every request is reviewed for its feasibility and rationale. If there is a way to meet it, the production version will be reconfigured.

Plan

This is the most crucial step in the evolution of a release. This is where the release’s structure will be defined. A solid plan will ensure that the release team is on track and meets all requirements. Use a checklist or create a workflow that stakeholders can refer to throughout the release process. This workflow should not only outline the scope and milestones but also the responsibilities.

Design and build

This is the programming phase where the requirements are converted into code This is the design and construction of executable software.

Test

After the release has been deemed ready to be tested, it is deployed to a testing environment. It undergoes both functional and non-functional testing (including UAT). It’s then sent back to the developers to be tweaked and tested again. The iterative process continues until both the product owner and the development team approve the release for production deployment.

Deployment

The release is deployed in the live environment and then made available to users. The deployment process involves more than installing the release. This involves educating the users about the changes and training them on how to use the system in the context of the new features.

Post-Deployment

After deployment, the release goes to the support phase. Here bugs can be recorded and will eventually require a request for modifications. This is the beginning of the next cycle.

Also read: What is Prototype Development A Full Guide?

What are the Success Indicators for Release Management?

To be considered successful, a release must meet the following criteria:

  • It is deployed at the right time.
  • It is within budget.
  • It has minimal to no effect on current users.
  • It meets the current and future needs of users, technological advancements, and/or competitive requirements.

For businesses without a formal release policy or procedure, it is a good idea to start looking for existing aspects of release management. These can be the building blocks of an organizational-wide release management framework.

You don’t have to Start from Scratch

Nearly every organization includes some form of release management in their application management process.

For businesses without a formal release management policy or procedure, it is a good idea to start looking for existing aspects of release management. These can be the building blocks of an organizational-wide release management framework.

Top Release Management Tools

1. ClickUp
2. Azure Pipelines
3. Jira
4. Chef
5. Ansible
6. Plutora
7. Spinnaker
8. Octopus Deploy
9. Digital.ai Release
10. Jenkins

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