Selecting a CM/ALM Tool That Will Add Value to All Users

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In his CM: the Next Generation series, Joe Farah gives us a glimpse into the trends that CM experts will need to tackle and master based upon industry trends and future technology challenges.

29. Dynamic management dashboard capability, customizable: 4G CM/ALM dashboards are dynamic so that they can traverse products, builds, releases, streams or any other potentially dynamic selection criteria (i.e., without having to re-launch the dashboard). In this sense, it is possible to navigate through project or product status across releases, or to navigate through a list of build comparisons. Dashboards are easily customized to have exactly the information desired by the role or by the activity being performed.

30. Electronic authorizations: Electronic authorizations, including signing of reviews or documents, is supported across the entire suite of ALM applications.

31. Warm-stand-by disaster recovery: The 4G CM/ALM tool supports warm standby disaster recovery so that a disk crash, an explosion or a natural disaster does not impede the work of clients. A manual or automated redirection of the client/server connection leaves the client with the ability to continue his/her work without any loss of progress or context.

32. Checkpoint/recovery capability: The 4G CM/ALM tool allows relatively small checkpoints to be created and used as consistent recovery points. Ideally, transactions created after the checkpoint can be applied automatically to the checkpoint after recovery if desired.

33. Ultra high reliability and availability: Data availability is available 99.95% of the time, with a down time of less than 4 hours per year.

34. ITAR data segregation: Both Physical and Logical data segregation is supported so that a common set of data can be shared with proper regard to which data is visible to which users.

35. Recovery from malicious/subtle data corruption: The 4G CM/ALM tool supports identification of and full recovery from data sabatoge or subtle data corruption, with minimal loss of data or effort.

36. Proven longevity of the tool on projects (12+ years): The 4G CM/ALM tools have proven its longevity with at least a dozen years operation on projects of a significant size and constant activity.

37. Extensive report formats (XML, Spreadsheet, HTML, Text, etc.): Reporting capabilities are extensive to support intranets, data export and various other reporting needs.

38. Interactive browsers (hyperdata, tree-browse, form browse, etc): The 4G CM/ALM tool includes a variety of history, tree, hyperdata and form-based browsers to interactively navigate the wealth of data.

39. Executive Summary and Interactive Drill-down Capabilities: Interactive abilities include drill-down capabilities on charts, graphs, summary displays down to the finest details.

40. Security-file access logging: The CM/ALM tool supports the option of full file access logging so that it is possible to identify both who has modified and who has accessed a file managed within the tool.

41. Pre-populated role-based information tabs and/or dashboards: The 4G CM/ALM tools starts up with a configurable set of pre-populated role-based information sets, each a single click away. This allows instant access to the most frequently used summaries and information displays without having to request the information.

About the author

Joe Farah's picture Joe Farah

Joe Farah is the President and CEO of Neuma Technology and is a regular contributor to the CM Journal. Prior to co-founding Neuma in 1990 and directing the development of CM+, Joe was Director of Software Architecture and Technology at Mitel, and in the 1970s a Development Manager at Nortel (Bell-Northern Research) where he developed the Program Library System (PLS) still heavily in use by Nortel's largest projects. A software developer since the late 1960s, Joe holds a B.A.Sc. degree in Engineering Science from the University of Toronto. You can contact Joe at farah@neuma.com

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