As covered by a previous blog post & white paper on the Intland website, the Internet of Things is completely reshaping the definition of product. We are now going to explore how this affects product developers, and how interconnected lifecycles can be managed. Read an excerpt of our latest piece of premium content below, or scroll right down to download it!
Before smart elements were added to products, the term 'product' was simply used to refer to the physical item (a refrigerator, car or telephone for example). The addition of smart and connectivity components, however, has enabled developers to embed services in their products – and increasingly, we value these services more than the actual physical items. To cite a few widely used examples, cars that can navigate, fridges that compile a shopping list, or smart, connected homes that save you time and energy are all convenient additions to the basic functionality offered by these products.
The challenges of managing interconnected, overlapping lifecycles
While connectivity and smart systems (microprocessors, memory modules, etc) mean new opportunities for developers to offer innovative services and products, this change also entails certain challenges. Forced to manage the development of smart components, reliable software, and the innovation of clever services all together, product developers today need to rethink what business they're in. They need to be adept at all three, and they also need to find a way to manage the interconnected lifecycles of hardware & software development, and service innovation.
The different development methodologies used further increase the challenge: hardware is usually developed using a Waterfall-type process, while software development is increasingly supported by Agile processes. Services may be developed using either of these, or a Hybrid process combining the benefits of both – either way, all three of these development streams contribute to the same product, and consequently they should be managed in one integrated platform.
Integrated management of separate development streams
The term xLM was coined to refer to the management of various lifecycles (application, product, demand, innovation, etc). As discussed above, in order to be able to manage all these lifecycles under one roof, you'll need to bring together the various development streams and lifecycle processes in an integrated manner. In addition to posing a business management problem, this challenge also comes with its own technical difficulties: there's no tool on the market yet that was specifically designed to enable you to do this.
However, flexible lifecycle management solutions let you integrate individual development streams and lifecycles, providing a high-level overview & letting you continuously monitor the performance of each stream, as well as the granular management of processes.
Through its Release Train mechanism, codeBeamer ALM allows you to house sub-releases under releases, monitor performance KPIs, and manage the work of all the teams and team members involved – whatever development stream they contribute to, and whatever methodology they use. Thus, it provides a convenient and efficient platform to manage the individual, but overlapping and intertwined lifecycles of hardware development, software development, and service innovation.
What's more, codeBeamer also supports the integration of suppliers and technologies via its collaborative features and several integration points. Collaboration with third parties is facilitated by shared documents, commenting, complete change history of all artifacts, as well as workflows to enforce processes, and group-based access and the availability of Reviewer licenses. REST API and built-in integration with industry standard solutions further support collaboration, and the integration of codeBeamer in any kind of development environment.
To find out more about how the management of interconnected and overlapping lifecycles is supported by codeBeamer, download our latest piece of premium content below. Still have further questions? Don't hesitate to contact us, or start your free evaluation right away!