Advice From The Community

Read answers to top Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Suites questions. 431,081 professionals have gotten help from our community of experts.
Therese Divita
I work in the department of human services for the government. Would you use one or both ALM and JIRA to manage the SDLC and production support work? Thanks! I appreciate the help.
author avatarBrent Reed
Real User

For my public sector clients whom I work with, I like to include the concept of application lifecycle management. ALM should be defined for the people involved in the project, i.e. supplying the application, the business that requires the application and the support folks caring and maintaining the solution. Get them all on the same page, so to speak of what ALM means for them. Secondly, processes used to support SDLC+Operations, are part of the overall support and solution to ALM. These processes improved with a tool such as JIRA, (other mentioned int he comments). One example per this public sector client is that they are using new software as services in a "low code" design and architecture. They are already using JIRA and some other Atlassian products to manage the development of the new applications. Thus in my role as an agile enterprise architect, I am helping them define their ALM goals and support and achieve these goals with tools such as JIRA, the SaaS platform. The project includes the transition from heavy code on legacy platforms to a new lighter and business-centric approach. ALM+Tools+SDLC has opened up new capabilities such as automation, agile, and DevOps ways of working, however, the mindset and awareness of using ALM and tools like JIRA to improve their SDLC are vital as it also opens up an improved help desk, release management and other operational support work. Your question requires more context to say yes to JIRA; however, I absolutely support an ALM approach using a modern toolset that supports agility, automation, monitoring, release management, ticketing and troubleshooting. Each of these is essential services that form the value stream of the business concept to an application in production. Thus the lifecycle of the value of an application and solution.

author avatarAphiwatLeetavorn

It is depending on the case
If you using Agile as development framework
ALM octane is coverage in one single tool while JIRA need many integration [such as requirement: confluence, test: Zephyr, defect: core JIRA]

If you using Waterfall and focus on testing process, classic ALM is best suit on the solution

in other cases
1. if you don't want ot host the environment, JIRA and its integrations is better for on cloud.
2. if you have budget limit, may be JIRA is better choice. It's more cheaper

However, if you don't have budget constrain, ALM octane for Agile development and ALM classic for requirement and test management are the best choice.

author avatarLaurent

A real ALM does not require a ticket/activity tracking in addition. A real ALM includes all you need to manage the demand, your activities, your (agile) projets, your code, your continuous integration, your continuous testing, your validation, the traceability, the collaboration, etc.. If it does not provide all this, it is not complete. If it requires many plugins to work... well, evaluate carefully.

author avatarJean-Yves Allard

I would recommend Jira, not ALM. ALM is big, very hard to implement, costly and at the end of its life (hence being now supported by Micro Focus). If I were to start from scratch, I would pick a cloud solution like Azure DevOps or GitLab, even if you don't do cloud-based applications. These are the two we use ourselves.

We use both simply because historically our Java dev teams were all Git and our .Net dev teams were using MS Team Foundation Services (TFS). Our pipeline also integrates our own test platform Askida CT for all testing except unit tests. Jira remains our Agile comms tool because it has been integrated into our ERP for billing (we use the Tempo plug-in).

So when counseling our clients, the choice we recommend is based on what they already know, the expertise of their dev team and the technologies their products use.

My own preference is Azure because of the breadth of tools well-integrated services.

author avatarFredSchroeder

Neither – nor, to manage SDLC I prefer MS Project to have fully integrated toolbox incl. controlling EVM day by day, multiple(!!!) resources per task, dynamic cycles for agile sprints, all based on a unique vector-net-plan algorithm with force & back simulation, multiple critical chains, etc. etc. others are dreaming of.

author avatarLaurent

You can always use JIRA with an alternate tool. The point is whether it is efficient or not for you case. Though in my experience most integrated agile development tools replace Jira and are more efficient, especially when dealing with code (in addition to just managing activities and tasks). Steven proposed one; I propose to give a try to Tuleap.

author avatarDuane Edghill

Can you clarify what you mean by ALM? ALM typically stands for Agile Lifecycle Management and JIRA is one of many ALM tools on the market so I am not clear on what you are asking. You say your doing both software development and operations/production support so I assume you may be using Scrum and Kanban. In my experience JIRA is fine for small single team use and primarily for Scrum. You can use it for Kanban but if you are looking for the typical metrics we track with production/operations teams vs SDLC teams then JIRA may not be the right answer for your production teams. If you are just looking for the visibility offered by Kanban then JIRA may provide sufficient ability.

author avatarJavadTalebi
Real User

I would recommend both of them, JIRA for Agile/non-agile projects/requests tracking. and ALM for Testing/Staging and Production stages,

Ariel Lindenfeld
Let the community know what you think. Share your opinions now!
author avatarNitin Kaushik
Real User

Adaptability, scalability, seamless collaboration with external tools along with near native interface for requirement, design, test and ccm activities within the collaborative suite. Process governed along with level of simplicity covers ALM as suite.

author avatarDiego Caicedo Lescano
Real User

1. Easy of automation
2. Integration with functional and no functional solutions
3. Dashboards for governance

author avatarit_user358428 (Senior Developer/Business Intelligence Lead Architect at a tech services company with 51-200 employees)

The ability to version control all database artifacts, and the ability to perform CI-triggered, automated database artifact deployment.

author avatarJagadheesan Nallasamy
Real User

- Traceability
- Reliability
- Visibility
- Easy to trace the life cycle of defects
- Test Coverage
- Project Reports
- Plugins

author avatarRebecca Randad (Epsilon)

The most important thing is to understand the life cycle model in which you operate your projects and look for ALM tools that support workflow in that model without too much custom configuration.
Secondly, the ability to report progress out of the tool enables project managers to ease out on manual efforts collating information from various team members.

author avatarMilton Huston Jr. (CA Technologies)

Key points to note:
1. Visibility/Traceability of all artifacts traversing the application lifecycle
2. Ability to report against these artifacts; OOTB canned reports provide an excellent starting point
3. Integration is key to support automation of manual processes; the rest API should be available as well as ootb integration with popular solutions such as Jenkins and JIra.
4. Ease of use and configuration will go a long way to support adoption across the enterprise.

author avatarAnita Wall (IBM)

When evaluating ALM suites the following aspects are very important to
evaluate - broken down into 3 categories, Technical/Integrations/General
Product & Vendor. Evaluate the degree to which the ALM candidate satisfies
these criteria:


 Test case creation, organization & management

 Traceability between test assets (test cases, defects, automation)  and
requirements/use cases/user stories

 Customizable test case template

 Import of test cases

 Customization of test execution and test status workflows

 Test execution status capture (e.g., screen shots, automation status)

 Bi-modal support

 Multiple summary dashboards (e.g., requirements coverage, test case status, test
execution status)

 Multi-format printable, exportable reports (e.g., csv, XML, MS-Excel, MS-Word, etc.)

 Report filtering and Customizable reports


 Role-based security and permissions management

 Notifications/Alerts upon status change

 Ease of Use – tool installation, configuration and administration


Supported Client OSes – e.g., Windows, MacOS, Linux/Unix, Mobile OSes – and associated

Requirements tool integration

Defect Management tool integration

DevOps tool chain integrations (e.g., build & code versioning)

Support for Development IDE integration

Test Automation tool integration (for planning, triggered execution and status)

Enterprise network/SaaS hosting

Seamless integration points (requiring no plug-ins]

Product / Vendor

Licensed/Freeware/Open Source

Licensing structure

Support costs incl. 3rd Party maintenance requirements

Considered Best of Breed?

Technology lifecycle considerations: major/minor releases, security patches

Active user community?

Vendor reputation: Customer satisfaction and service level standards

Ease of Support including documentation

Vendor continuity

author avatarShachar Furman

I would recommend evaluating the following –

* User-friendliness and ease of use.
* What is the solution’s added-value over SAP pre-existing tools.
* The solution’s footprint on your systems.
* Ease of installation and configuration.
* Does the manufacturer also offers expertise in deciphering the results and how to best extract from them insights for SAP future use.

See more Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Suites questions »

What is Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Suites?

Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Suites make it possible for all the people and teams involved in developing, testing and deploying software applications to stay on top of the various processes. The application lifecycle is growing faster and more complex with the advent of agile development methodologies, cloud computing and continuous code integration. As apps get more interdependent and the pace of development of each component picks up, there is a reduction in time between the lifecycle stages of develop, test, deploy, modify and retire. As a result, teams need powerful tools to help keep track of what’s going on to keep everything running smoothly.

According to members of IT Central Station, ALM software needs to address both the technological intricacies of development and the organizational aspects of the development process. Users stress the importance of collaboration and communication among team members. They expect Application Lifecycle Management packages to support project management traceability, visibility and stability along with integration with development tools.  ALM should also be lightweight and platform agnostic.

ALM users on the site describe the importance of ALM facilitating integration with automation tools. This way, each team can set-up its own delivery pipeline to be run by team members with full visibility for everyone. All project stakeholders have to be able to trace project work, even if they are not on the dev team – or even in the IT department. The new DevOps paradigm means that IT Ops and line of business (LOB) stakeholders may need to instantly see where they are on a project and what is coming up next.

Testing is one of the most discussed uses of ALM on IT Central Station. ALM software suites can provide a centralized location for the testing life-cycle.  For testing, ALM users want dashboard integration of release tracking, a test case repository and defect tracking.  Users also expect ALM suites to enable customized reporting and versionable, robust backups. 

Find out what your peers are saying about Atlassian, Micro Focus, Microsoft and others in Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Suites. Updated: July 2020.
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