Transmission successful: 4 steps for knowledge transfer between BizTalk Development and Operations teams

Posted by Ivar Sagemo

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The transmission of information from the IT development team to the operations team is an important step in ensuring a successful BizTalk deployment.

Whether the handoff is done in-house or from an external partner to your internal team, there needs to be a coordinated and cohesive effort to ensure your team is ready and able to work with your organization’s new platform.

Here are four steps to a seamless transfer of knowledge between BizTalk development and operations teams.


#1. A basic walkthrough

Before formally deploying BizTalk, developers need to create a simple application that’s deployed in these environments — development > test > staging > production. This walkthrough should help operations team members understand how to work with BizTalk from within Visual Studio, and how to perform functions ranging from creating artifacts on the administration console to using wizards to work with applications.

An intelligent monitoring solution is a valuable tool in this stage of the process, serving as a development team tool for providing updates and as an operations team tool for mapping progress.

#2. Hands-on training

Ideally, an instructor knowledgeable in the use of BizTalk from an operations perspective should lead your team through a multi-day training session that provides hands-on exposure to the new system. The training should include real-world examples of how the system works and what needs to be done if something goes wrong. Since administrators are often the ones given the “green light” for deployments, they want to control what's deployed and how it impacts the existing production.

The advantage of an intelligent monitoring solution during this process is that the same tool used during development is easily deployed with monitoring functionality when the BizTalk platform is handed over to operations.

 

#3. Documentation

With so many different interfaces involved in an integrated system like BizTalk, manual documentation is sure to encompass hundreds of pages of data and details. And after so much effort, all it takes is the introduction of one new application into BizTalk for documentation to be out of date. Factor in the costs of manpower for your IT pros to keep these user manuals up to date, and then multiply that by the hundreds of changes and introductions of business processes and integrations your organization undergoes each year.

Intelligent monitoring software updates automatically with each change to your environment by detecting any changes to the system integration. Behavioral changes are also detected based on machine learning, so that changes are measured against established norms that evolve along with your organization.

#4. Troubleshooting tryouts

Manually trying to discover the cause of the outage in an integrated system like BizTalk is one of the most challenging tasks for any IT professional. Not only do manual processes require the IT professional to leaf through pages of documentation and search internally for clues as to what’s gone wrong, he also must guess about which clients to talk to about their interfaces with your organization.

Application performance monitoring software updates automatically with each change to your environment by detecting any changes to the system integration. Behavioral changes are also detected based on machine learning, so that changes are measured against established norms that evolve along with your organization.

Your IT teams have enough going on during a BizTalk deployment without having to deal with unnecessary manual processes. Intelligent monitoring software automates the process and makes any BizTalk deployment a more efficient, cost-effective and coordinated effort.

 

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