What is most valuable?
A lot of the reporting is very valuable to us. We really need to control certain releases and milestones, and so on. Being able to report and get statistics on all of that stuff is one of the features we really like, especially now that they're expanding that as well. We like that.
How has it helped my organization?
Honestly, it keeps us more organized. We have a lot of products and we ship them pretty fast. CA Agile Central is great for us because we can categorize all these different things. It really gives our top-level leadership visibility into what we're doing so that they don't pound down our door every two seconds. They can actually go into CA Agile Central and figure things out for themselves. They can make better decisions without really needing us.
What needs improvement?
I use it a lot. I don’t really have any complaints. There are a lot of alternatives out there. They are also useful, but I have no complaints with CA Agile Central or with CA in general. I don't find myself saying, “I wish it did this,” or ”It's really killing me here”. It has been a good experience.
As a release manager, what they’re coming out with now in terms of release automation is going to be very valuable to me. I think that with CI (continuous integration), as much as it is expanding and taking over most software shops anyway, I think that's the way to go. I think they're doing it right. As a release manager, I'm happy. CA is coming out with a lot of CI-type things, which is good.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
It is stable. There are no issues there.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
It is scalable. There are no issues there.
How are customer service and technical support?
The customer support at CA is good; however, we haven’t had to use it, which is good. It's always there if we need it. That's also good. Technical Support
I don’t believe we’ve needed technical support. It has been pretty stable. It fits our needs for what we need so far.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
My company has been using CA Agile Central for as long as I’ve been there.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
I've been at other companies where they're using different tools, like JIRA and stuff like that; but CA Agile Central is fine. At one of those companies, we weren’t using JIRA all the time. It was really too convoluted for what we needed.; so we didn’t use them. Sometimes you needed to dig for certain things that were not necessarily laid out flat like CA Agile Central is. Even though, in JIRA, you can kind of organize them in different ways; but only if you use them. Like I said, CA Agile Central fits our needs pretty well.
What other advice do I have?
Our top reason for selecting an agile platform was needing to ship as fast as possible. Waterfall is good for new products coming out, but we have a lot of long-standing applications that have been out on the market for awhile. Getting releases together and shipping them as fast as possible is what we needed. It was kind of a no-brainer for us.
I would say our agile maturity is intermediate. We're still learning. There's so much you can do. Like I said, we are even coming out with new products, so we have to use waterfall sometimes; but we're still learning about it. We're trying to integrate as much as possible and tailor it to our company.
When we evaluate vendors, are most important criteria are the customer support, scalability, and availability. We've had problems in the past with some other vendors whose products’ availability was not what we needed. They would go down quite a bit, more times than you would think, honestly. That's a big deal for us, especially whenever we put so much into it. If a system goes down, the entire development department basically stops working. That's a big thing for us, especially as we keep putting more and more into CA Agile Central.
If a colleague of mine was evaluating this solution, I would advise them to keep it small. Simple is better.