How to Implement Effective Release Management Using Agile Practices

Agile teams strive to develop a working mechanism to implement effective release plans. A formal release process allows them to identify the features that are important and need prioritizing. Once the essential features are implemented, the development teams can move on to other aspects of agile project management.

With frequent integration and verification, the process of software release becomes easier and more effective. Here are some agile best practices to bring efficiencies to releases:

Prepare an Ideal Release Plan

A successful release plan for software development includes prioritizing Scrum product backlog that covers the minimum viable product. Every member on your team should understand the purpose of the release and follow an estimated velocity to avoid unrealistic planning.

Also, it includes the criteria of successful release where the goals meet the scope, resources, and schedules.

Embrace Continuous Integration

The process of release management requires continuous integration to detect mistakes before the final stages. This increases the prospects of successful releases. Also, it leads to the proper implementation of continuous delivery and complete automation.

If you follow the best practices of continuous integration, you may reduce the risks, increase visibility, and improve the frequency of deployment in the process.

Choose a Suitable Day

When working on agile software development, selecting a suitable day for the release can also make a lot of difference. For example, if you work from Monday to Friday, avoid launching your product on the last working day that is Friday.

In this case, if any glitches appear, it won’t be very easy for you to fix them before Monday unless you are willing to work on the weekend as well. Try releasing your product in the middle of the week, which gives you ample time to fix the problems or provide a rollback if needed.

Here, consider the time zone where most of the users reside. Choose a low traffic period for release. This will minimize the damages if any part of the product fails.

Monitor the Process

There may be challenges down the road when releasing your product. You can mitigate these challenges by following the right steps in agile project management. The development team and product managers may work together to prioritize the items for release.

There may be a feature with high priority in the release, although it has low priority ranking in the backlog. In such cases, use release bots to categorize the content of the release. It includes adding the items from the backlog and associating each item with multiple sprints.

Also, consider creating a user story from the release board itself. You may rearrange release items based on your priorities and revisit them anytime.

Manage the DevOps

DevOps help to automate the release plan for immediate feedbacks. Development teams can address the conflict immediately if they integrate their codes. Use trunk branches for release plans to ensure successful delivery.

Create feature branches for prototyping and merge them with trunk for regression testing. Here, take care to use only one pull request to make similar changes. You can use work item reference tools to this effect.

These are some best practices for release management in an agile development project.

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