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Agile ALM Tool

  1. Agile Tool
  2. ALM Tool
  3. Scaled Agile
  4. Easy to Use
Agile ALM Scrum tool
SoftALM®
The Only, End-To-End Application Lifecycle Management Tool for Agile Enterprise!
SoftALM: End-to-End Agile ALM Tool for Scaling Agile for Enteprises
Requirement
Management
Program
Management
Test & Defect
Management
Customer
Support
Integration with other tools for Continuous Delivery
Scale Agile for Your Enterprise? Here's how we can help :

Scale Agile
for Enterprises

Agile Project
Management
Tool

Integration
& Migration
from Legacy

Enterprise
Transformation
& Training

Software Delivery is complex enough. Patch work of ALM Tools does not make it any easier for you.

Let SoftALM® provide you
with integrated Requirement, Test
Case & Defect Management in a
single Agile ALM Tool !

Requirement
Tool
Development
Tool
Testing
Tool
Quality
Station
Customer
Support
Bug
Tracker

SoftALM® provides a single End-to-End Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) platform which lets your team focus on what it does best – develop extra-ordinary software!

SoftALM: End-to-End Agile ALM Tool for Scaling Agile for Enteprises

SoftALM® addresses following enterprise needs:

  • To Achieve Predictive High Quality Delivery, on Schedule & within Budget for your program and project management
  • Scaled Agile Framework for enterprise teams
  • Enterprise-wide visibility for your applications portfolio
  • End-to-End functionality for ALM – Requirement Management, Projects, Test cases, Defects, etc. to integrate the entire Application Lifecycle Management process on one Agile platform
  • Facilitates Compliance such as 21CFR11 & TL9000, Traceability
  • Integration with other Tools For Continuous Integration and Delivery
  • Social Collaborative approach to Knowledge Management

SoftALM® is an outcome of Team JamBuster’s earnest efforts to learn from challenges it faced while working on Software Out-sourcing, managing a Captive Software Product Development Center and recently on developing our own enterprise software products. Software development, over the years, has become complex enterprise activity, requiring cross-functional collaboration with agility. Thus, most development challenges, either quality or predictive delivery arise from not having the visibility to progress and problems across teams and projects. These challenges can be overcome with an Application Lifecycle Management software that leverages Agile (Agile ALM tool) to work for bigger and globally spread-out enterprise teams. SoftALMTM also provides capabilities for Waterfall development. Thus SoftALMTM is a tool that lets you manage ALM either the Agile or the Waterfall way.


SoftALM® - provides complete visibility through an integrated end-to-end ALM platform to take away the pain in managing and maintaining the patchwork of ALM Tools, and focus on continuous delivery and be release ready. So SoftALM® truly takes care of the ALM needs and lets you develop extra-ordinary software and win hearts of your customers!

Why SoftALM?

SoftALM® provides all capabilities that an ideal Agile Tool should possess. Along with being an ALM Tool, SoftALM leverages Agile methodology to attain continuous delivery. Below are the key capabilities of SoftALM as an Agile ALM Tool, keeping the Agile Manifesto as basis:

Agile Program/Project Management

  • Create Program Backlog items in less than 10 seconds
  • Create a new Program in a few clicks
  • Create Stories and map Requirements easily
  • Requirements – Test Case – Defect Mapping

Scrum, XP, Kanban & Lean

  • Create Scrum Teams and their Backlogs
  • Create a team-wise backlog
  • Deliver tasks on a Kanban taskboard
  • Lean principles applied to ensure minimum details and improve efficiency
  • Extreme Programming (XP) leveraged for iterative development with Customer feedback incorporated in each Release cycle.

SoftALM thus provides an Agile ALM Tool that is simple yet intelligent!


SoftALM® is an Agile ALM Tool that leverages Agile methodology while providing following key ALM capabilities:

Product Definition

  • Create & add new Product lines & Products in seconds!
  • Instant Product detailing, progress status & quality reports
  • Create Product Backlog, detail Feature with Stories Requirements

Test & Defect Management

  • Traceability of Requirements / Stories to Test Cases & Defects
  • Repository of Test Cases & Defect by Product Versions & Programs
  • Export/Import Defects & Test Cases in a single click

Customer Support

  • Allow your customer to report issues from your website.
  • Review if issue is a defect, a new requirement
  • Push customer feedback into program backlog!

Program/Activity Management

  • Create Programs that to implement Product Roadmap
  • Create Scrum teams, add Iterations, stories and tasks
  • Release/Iteration burn-downs & Scrum task-boards

Release & Configuration Management

  • Plan & monitor Releases & Iterations in few clicks
  • Create On-Demand Release & add features to include
  • Use Release Configuration Data for Continuous Delivery

SoftALM® provides a scaled agile framework to transform your enterprise to Agile! The heart of agile is its team that brings the agility. This improved velocity necessitates a relatively large product backlog at all times. Thus for enterprises, scaling agile is being able to scale product definition backlog and closely monitor its burn-down in program/release/iterations to ensure agility.

Product Definition

  • Easy to add Product Backlog & Product Roadmap
  • Manage multiple Product Releases within a product line
  • Epic – Feature – Story - Requirements hierarchy to scale up product backlog
  • Add extra-edge to your Backlog by including customer feedback

Agile Program Management

  • Program to manage A Product Line
  • Plan & Monitor multiple products’ releases in a single program for a product line
  • Capture ALM of a Product by creating multiple Programs
  • Create & manage concurrent releases & their iterations

Connect Global Scrum Teams

  • Have multi-located teams work on a single Release
  • Plan & Manager Releases with Multiple scrum team for large enterprise team
  • Stay on the same page by viewing location-wise progress on the Release
  • Send/View Scrum reports to team members & chat with your team

SoftALM thus provides an Agile ALM Tool that facilitates seamless transformation of your enterprise to Agile!


SoftALM® provides a very simplistic flow that will ease the Agile ALM for your enterprise.

Simplicity

  • All key tasks can be accomplished within 5 seconds!
  • The Menu resembles ALM cycle for user to experience an intuitive flow
  • 1 click dashboard displays all relevant data for any Program, Release or Iteration

Integrated Information

  • All the information is integrated (even for geographically spread-out teams) & displayed on 1 dashboard
  • User Story – Requirement – Test Case – Defect traceability to provide an end-to-end view
  • History maintained for the changes made to each artifact & its available on a click!

Roles & Rights

  • The modules of SoftALM are functional, there by provide ease of use and access!
  • Roles & Rights are completely configurable in a few clicks!
  • The super-user can change configuration settings easily & needn’t be a systems expert to do so

SoftALM thus provides an Agile ALM Tool that’s so easy to use, that your team will take less than a day to learn it!

Key Features

The SoftALM® model explained below provides an overview of SoftALM's features

    Programs & Releases:

  • Plan, Execute Programs & their Releases.
  • Define Release efforts & load teams accordingly.

    Product Features & Requirements:

  • Develop & manage Product Portfolios
  • Define product backlogs through hierarchy of Epics, Features & Requirements

    Customer Feedback:

  • Provide superior customer support by enabling the customer to add feedback/defects directly.
  • Review and include feedback in current Release or add to Product Backlog
SoftALM: End-to-End Agile ALM Tool for Scaling Agile for Enteprises Key Features

    Development Sprint:

  • Manage software development through Sprints or Iterations.
  • Create, assign & deliver tasks on the taskboard. See burn-downs on your dashboard.

    Test Cases & Defects:

  • Manage repository of test cases and defects for each Product & Program.
  • Add, Edit, Import or Export test cases & defects to SoftALM®

SoftALM® is one ALM tool that you will need whether you chose to do Waterfall development or Agile development. Mentioned below are some key features:

  1. End-to-end Solution: SoftALM®’s Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) model as shown in Figure, starts from requirements, i.e. Define Product and goes all the way to Release (After Quality Analysis/ Verify Quality) to include Customer Support. This enables to have end-to-end visibility and traceability throughout the Application Development Lifecycle allowing your team to be truly nimble or agile.
  2. Agile ALM: In Plan Program module, SoftALM® provides complete agile project management capabilities and thus seamlessly integrate benefits of Agile methodology by creating a scaled agile framework for enterprises. SoftALMTM is thus truly an Agile ALM tool. It still does provide waterfall methodology as a back-up for on-going those programs.
  3. Functional Modules: SoftALM®’s modules provide full functionality needed for each step in the process. Thus Plan Program, provides all capabilities needed for planning a software product program – from team, scoping program backlog from product backlog, planning releases – duration, teams, working backlog, and sprints. It also contains Program, Release and Iteration Dashboards that facilitate analysis for further planning or modifications.
  4. Roles Based Access: Roles and responsibilities related to each role are very important and hence we do full justice to it in SoftALM®! Having role-based access lets you customize your entire team’s dashboards, so managers get to mentor team’s efforts as the work progresses.
  5. Enterprise Software: SoftALM® is an Enterprise Software, in a sense it can serve 5 to 5000 people working across multiple locations and facilitates collaboration with customers spread across the globe, while role based configurable access ensures security of information on need-to-know basis!

Hence, SoftALM® builds on the Methodology you prefer (Agile or Waterfall) to make the Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) process a collaborative one and provide you with data at your fingertips to make quick decisions!

SoftALM Model

Essential to SoftALM® model is the traditional ALM Model:

Plan Develop/Build Release

An end-to-end Agile ALM tool however must bring in Product Planning, Quality & Customer Support, in iterative cycles. This becomes the basis of SoftALM® model, the phases of which are explained below:

  1. Define Product: The SoftALM® Model begins with defining the product through building the Product Backlog through Features and Epics. SoftALM® leverages both User Stories and Requirements/Sub-requirement capabilities as part of Feature Hierarchy. SoftALM® combines business and architectural backlogs, along with the customer feedback to develop Product Roadmap.

  2. SoftALM: End-to-End Agile ALM Tool for Scaling Agile for Enteprises
  3. Plan program: While product vision is arrived at, Program Manager (PM) works with Product Owner (PO) and Release Leader (RL) to plan how to implement the Product Roadmap through a Program or a series of Projects or Releases. Thus program is further divided into logical releases with feature implementation to burn down the program backlog. A release comprises of Iterations/Sprints that are time-boxed tasks/events for incrementally achieving the objectives defined in the Sprint Goal.

  4. Develop Software: After the higher level plans are in place, Execution begins. The entire Software Development Team works to achieve the Sprint Goals within the time-box agreed upon. This is very collaborative phase as it involves working on Sprint Goals/Objectives and planning those Sprints.

  5. Verify Quality: While product vision is perfect, implementation introduced flaws. Hence the application is tested through acceptance criteria against user story or requirements by the quality analysts to ensure that the Release Implementation lives up to product vision, within the quality standards set up by the organization.

  6. Support Customer: A very important phase of the SoftALM® model is customer usage, support and interactions arising from it. Customer is involved to verify usability of software, report defects and feedback and provide feature requests. This step basically recognizes the need to include customer in the ALM models. The customer feedback is an essential element of the Product Backlog, which is a trigger to next release cycle. SoftALM® provides Customer Support module as integral part of ALM to address customers, for whom the product is developed!

  7. SoftALM® thus provides an end-to-end modular view of Agile ALM for the enterprise! These modules are also made for functional groups and roles, while providing for collaboration in specific functional modules through strategy discussions, report broadcasts, chatting, etc. The integrated view lets us see the challenges before they become challenges and therefore provide solutions to overcoming the development jams. Hence making software development easy and truly agile!

Scaled SoftALM Model

Agile has proven its success in relatively small teams of 5-10 people. Enterprises with large teams of 500-50000, looking to leverage agile, therefore need to scale agile methodology for their usage.


At JamBuster, we believe such that success of Agile is because of its small team that ensures all functions work on a user story together, leading to face-to-face communication that quickly resolves issues, brings out ideas and speeds up its implementation. Hence this small team is the soul of Agile and must be preserved by Enterprise to leverage Agile principles!


SoftALM® provides a flexible framework for scaling agile for enterprises that preserves such small scrum or agile team implementation. While a small company software team of 5-20 works on a one or more product, an enterprise software company works with multiple 50-500+ people teams, on product lines, each containing several software products. Hence, we realize while scaling Agile for enterprise, the scaling should be provided as hierarchy or grouping of user stories, not only Feature and Epic, but also through Product and Product line. Thus, to ensure the preserving of the agile team, methodology and spirit even in the enterprise context, the program backlog is fed through product backlog – which consists of business features, architectural features and customer feedback.


SoftALM®'s framework for scaled agile is explained below:


  1. Defining Business & Architectural Backlog: Traditionally a product is defined through features it will have. The specifics of features are defined through requirement. These features can be either Business needs or Architectural. Together these features are referred as the Backlog. The Product Owner and Enterprise Architect build the Business Backlog and Architectural Backlog respectively through Epics and Features. Epics are collection of the similar or related features. These both Backlogs combined with the Customer Backlog give rise to Product Backlog. The product backlog is periodically prioritized to create the Product Roadmap. SoftALM: Scaled model for ALM - Product definition
  2. Plan Program: The Product Roadmap brings out the need for a new program and thus program backlog gets defined. Project or program are containers to manage implementation activities to convert product vision into software. While traditionally a project has a single release, program contains multiple releases of the software. Thus planning a program consists of planning multiple software releases to achieve the product roadmap and estimating efforts required for the same. SoftALM: Scaled model for ALM - Program management
  3. The Release: Agile development stresses incremental, iterative approach to develop a quality application. As mentioned above, a program is divided into multiple releases. These releases could be for internal or commercial. Each release contains multiple iterations from a single or multiple scrum teams. Iteration planning involved an incremental release of the software. While waterfall projects have a separate quality phase, Agile development contains the acceptance quality testing within iteration itself with its Done concept. SoftALM: Scaled model for ALM - Release management
  4. Customer Feedback (Our Addition to Agile Model): One of the attractive features of Agile is to adapt to changing customer requirements. In SoftAgile™ and SoftALM®, we introduced Customer feedback (i.e. Customer backlog) as an essential phase. The ability to incorporate customer feedback was missed in the Agile models, that many of the best known agile project management tools still use. Thus, Customer feedback or the backlog becomes very important so as to aid the voice of the customer to reach agile software development teams. Customer provides inputs on the usability, reports defects and adds to features that can be incorporated in the next Release cycle. SoftALM: Scaled model for ALM - Customer Feedback
  5. The Agile Scaled for Enterprise Model: The below model shows how the 4 phases of the model are interconnected SoftALM: Scaled model for ALM - Overall Flow

SoftALM® provides agile methodology, integrated with enterprise capabilities to make it – a complete Enterprise Agile tool.

Agile For Enterprises

A generic Agile methodology can be represented as:

Plan Develop/Build Release


This iterative, incremental and interactive model is very effective, if you are working with a small team of 5-10 people with 20-50 user stories in backlog, and a spread sheet can help manage.


Consider applyingagile with a 100-1000 strong enterprise team, with 5000-50,000 user stories across multiple products and product lines, some of which share the user-stories. Throw in multiple team locations across the globe. Then again there are compliances required by industry-specific certifications. Requirement Traceability means having digital record of lifecycle of requirement. So How Do You Scale Agile For Enterprise Level?


SoftALM®, our Agile Project Management Tool, builds on Agile Methodology to scale Agile for Enterprise level (can also be referred to as a scaled agile framework) in the following 3 abstractions described below:

  1. As depicted in Figure. 1, SoftALM® provides a hierarchy that lets you manage a large number of User Stories through Epics, Features and Requirements.
    SoftALM: Scaling Agile for Enterprise - Product entities Example: Consider a product that have 500 User Stories. 500 User Stories can give rise to about 5000-10000 Requirements. These User Stories can be grouped in 20-50 Features and 5-10 Epics. This simple hierarchy provides the enterprise level capabilities to manage development of products through incremental user story iteration.
  2. SoftALM: Scaling Agile - User Story entitiesThe second abstraction of linking User Story with Acceptance Criteria which are serve as in fact as Test Cases. Since the User Story can be seen as set of requirements, and hence test cases (or acceptance criteria) can be even connected to the corresponding requirements, essentially requirement-test case traceability can be achieved. This helps to keep track of all changes that occur in a progressive agile environment which does not let you sweat compliance audits!
    Also depicted in the Figure. 2 alongside, Acceptance of User Story can be through Test Cases, based on defect severity and count.
  3. This particular abstraction is demonstrates the idea of ‘Continuous Delivery’. Continuous Delivery is the new mantra of software development firms. Continuous Delivery helps your software development team to stay ahead and always be ready for Releases to win and sustain the trust of customers in this fiercely competitive world.
    SoftALM: Scaling Agile - User Story Acceptance through Iterations
    SoftALM: Scaling Agile - Relationship between Iteration, Program and Release
    Figure. 3.2 shows the relation of Iteration with Release and of Release to Program. Program comprises of set of Releases required to achieve the Product Roadmap. Hence, set of Iterations leads to Releases for achieving Program Backlog. This provides for true Agile Continuous Delivery.
    SoftALM: Scaling Agile - Enterprise ALM Flow
    Figure. 4 above depicts the scaled agile methodology that works for enterprise team.
Agile ALM

To appreciate Agile ALM, we need to first revisit the traditional ALM concept: Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) is managing the lifecycle stages of a software application – namely ideation, development and maintenance. ALM brings the best practices and structure to the software development process so as to aid continuous delivery of high quality software.


Application Lifecycle Management typically includes managing project, planning requirements, software development, testing, changes, integration and release. A large number of ALM tools are available, concerning one or more of above areas. An area, missed by these applications and for that purpose by traditional ALM models is Customer part of the application lifecycle. Since Software Applications are built for customers, customer in some format is and needs to be a part of ALM. This omission of customer support or feedback part from ALM is addressed by SoftALM®, that provides agile lifecycle management


The SoftALM® builds a unique niche in ALM by incorporating Customer Feedback in the software development process. The ability to use Waterfall and Agile methodologies in software development is equally well supported by SoftALM®. Thus SoftALM® does not oblige the use of only one methodology, rather it helps in transformation from the old to new in a very gradual and easy way.


SoftALM® provides a unique integration of Agile Project with Application Lifecycle data from requirements, testing, defect fixing and change requests. Thus SoftALM® is truly an Agile ALM. Furthermore, SoftALM® leverages Agile for Enterprise integrated with ALM. This Agile ALM capabilities of SoftALM® can be represented as following diagrammatic representation

Agile ALM

The above Agile ALM model supports building a Program Backlog (combination of Business and Architectural Backlog) through Epics, Features and detailing Requirements or Stories. The Product Backlog, when prioritized gives rise to a Program on which the Agile or Scrum team can work together. Release Backlog consists of Features that the scrum team has to deliver during that release. In Agile, the release is built through a series of sprints, each of which provides the delivery of a shippable DONE increment. Each sprint has a cross-functional team that works collaboratively on the Sprint or Iteration Backlog, which can be in the form of User stories or Requirements. Customer feedback or requests can be incorporated in an iteration or sprint, as and when they arise. This helps you be truly agile as you can respond and adapt to change requests quickly.


Having all the Product and Program lifecycle analytics, be it product backlog status or product quality or sprint burn-downs on your fingertips is what SoftALM® can do for your team! Thus making your Application Lifecycle Management a transparent and seamless process while being Agile!

Resources

Take a look at the following documents to learn more about SoftALM® (The Agile ALM Tool):

SoftALMTM
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