What if your development tool landscape is mission critical

Software is everywhere…

It runs on laptops, tablets, smartphones and even on all kind of smart devices that we use throughout the day such as lighting, thermostats or home automation solutions.

For the product development companies where software is a significant part of the product offering, efficient delivery of software is key for success. The tooling landscape that is required for the development of software is a critical ingredient for this success. Unavailability of this landscape could have an immediate effect on the on-time delivery of the software. As an ALM expert and Atlassian Solution Partner, TMC comes in contact with a lot of companies that use or want to use the Atlassian products to support for example Change Management, Version Control, Build Management, Release Management and Artifact Management.

The Atlassian portfolio offers the option to deploy their applications based on the datacenter licenses. These licenses enable for a high available, fail-over, disaster recovery deployment of for example JIRA and Bitbucket.

It is our experience that the majority of companies investing in a new development tool landscape somehow don’t talk about an available and robust development tool landscape. The moment the conversation addresses the two on-premis alternatives: server and datacenter the license cost for the datacenter offering is almost always the very first reason to stop talking about it.

Why is this the case would you ask?

We started thinking about this and we can come up with a number of reasons:

  1. The server product is simply that good. It often provides a very high level of availability and stability. The company’s own technical support representatives tell us that they have little or no work in keeping the Atlassian tools up and running.
  2. The people we initially talk with often have little or no clear view on the impact and consequences of a system failure. What does it cost when all the developers have to stop working because JIRA is not available or Bitbucket or Bamboo (for example 2 hour outage for 100 users with an internal rate of $50 / hour = $ 10.000,-)? This does not even include the potential costs and reputation damage of a missed deadline.

Of course the license cost is not the only ingredient that determines the TCO for a datacenter deployment. But during our talks with different companies the discussion about the business case for a robust, stable and available solution almost never gets the attention it deserves. Even at those companies that have a high number of users depending on the availability of for example JIRA and Bitbucket, this is the case.

It is not our intention to force potential customers in purchasing datacenter licenses. We want to solve our customer’s problem regarding the development tool landscape, but we also want to prevent future problems before they arise. If the problem at hand is solved by a server deployment strategy and the customer is happy with the solution, we are happy too. But the fact that we often don’t get the chance to discuss the topic seems that the complete problem domain is not addressed objectively. The problem domain is often only viewed from a functional perspective. We want to trigger our customer to think about the consequences of an outage so that a decision to choose a server deployment instead of a datacenter deployment strategy becomes a well balanced decision.

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Please let us know if you enjoyed reading this blog or want to see more of this content in the near future. Feel free to reach out to us with any questions you might have regarding ALM or Atlassian tools. Our contact details can be found here. 

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