Automated deployment tools and processes enable development teams to deploy software to testing and production environments at a push of a button. Indeed, automation is essential for reducing risks during deployments, usually due to human errors. On the other hand, automation is also critical for getting feedback on the quality of the software (through testing).
In this article, we’ll discuss how automated deployment applications and tools can streamline development teams’ workflows, improve product quality, and speed up releases.
But, before we get there, let’s touch on the basics of deployment automation, first.
What is deployment automation?
Simply put, deployment automation refers to a software deployment approach that allows development teams to accelerate their product release cycles, by automating build processes, testing and workflows. This approach makes deployments repeatable and reliable, across the entire application lifecycle.
The problem with manual tasks
Development teams’ workflows directly affect deployment — and time-to-market — timelines. Each workflow includes several monotonous — but necessary — manual tasks. At the same time, manual tasks are time-consuming and leave a lot of room for human error. To make matters worse, Dev teams use several different tools to complete a task. Yet, the more manual tasks and tools are being used across a company, the easier it is for unexpected mistakes to happen.
So, how can Dev teams work more efficiently — and faster? The answer is simple enough: By using automated deployment tools. That’s how Dev teams can streamline their software delivery workflows, and save a lot of time for themselves; and, a lot of money for companies.
Why use automated deployment tools?
Teams need to adapt to the increasing speed at which software is being developed today. To that end, they need the right tools, processes, practices, and systems — not to mention, company culture, too — to gain a competitive edge. Automated deployment tools, on their part, are essential to propelling a team’s speed at delivering new features; and, creating a fully automated DevOps pipeline. In effect, automation tools simplify the deployment process, by introducing a new, uninterrupted flow, throughout the application lifecycle.
Benefits, at a glance
There is no doubt about the value that automated deployment tools bring to modern businesses. However, some benefits stand out; for instance, using such tools you can:
- Run faster — and more efficient — deployments
- Streamline the DevOps process
- Accelerate release cycles
- Optimize the CI/CD process
- Get immediate feedback
- Minimize human error
- Encourage Agile practices
- Promote standardization
- Improve Ops efficiency
- Enhance team collaboration
- Increase productivity
- Boost innovation
Popular automated deployment tools and apps
Nowadays, there are many automated deployment tools that vendors offer as low-code — or no-code — solutions. Consequently, teams don’t need extensive programming knowledge to use them.
Instead, these tools — usually distributed under the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model — are easy-to-use, cost-effective applications. More often than not, they come with built-in capabilities, offering features that allow users to automate deployment workflows with little, or no need to write code.
Thankfully, there are many deployment automation tools out there to choose from, based on each team’s — and business’s — goals. To help you get started, here is a list of the most noteworthy ones:
- Docker swarm
- AWS CodeDeploy
- Google Cloud Deploy
- Azure DevOps Services
- Puppet Enterprise
- Chef Automate
Automating workflows with automated deployment tools
When it comes to software deployment, automated deployment tools can make a world of difference in saving time, minimizing the risk of human error, and simplifying complicated processes. As a result, Dev teams can release new features and applications more quickly and more frequently. In addition, they can automate their workflows, improve the quality of their code, and work toward new, innovative projects.
At the end of the day, for businesses that are ready to upgrade their software deployment model, automated deployment tools offer everything they need, to grow overall efficiency and scale up.