Posts tagged ‘agile’

By Emily Bache

Or: is Given-When-Then Compulsory?

In BDD you discover what software you should build through a collaborative process involving both software developers and business people. BDD also involves a lot of test automation and tools like Cucumber and SpecFlow. But what would happen if you used an Approval testing tool instead? Would that still be BDD?

Double-loop TDD diagram. Failing scenario -> passing scenario -> refactor and inner loop red->green->refactor

Figure 4 from “Discovery – Explore behaviour using examples” by Gaspar Nagy and Seb Rose

I’m a big fan of Behaviour Driven Development. I think it’s an excellent way for teams to gain a good understanding of what the end-user wants and how they will use the software. I like the emphasis on whole team collaboration and building shared understanding through examples. These examples can be turned into executable scenarios, also known as acceptance tests. They then become ‘living documentation’ that stays in sync with the system and helps everyone to collaborate over the lifetime of the software. 

I wrote an article about Double-Loop TDD a while back, and I was thinking about BDD again recently in the context of Approval testing. Are they compatible? The usual tools for automating scenarios as tests are SpecFlow and Cucumber which both use the Gherkin syntax. Test cases comprise ‘Given-When-Then’ steps written in natural language and backed up by automation code. My question is – could you use an Approval testing tool instead? 

I recently read a couple of books by Nagy and Rose. They are about BDD and specifically how to discover good examples and then formulate them into test cases. I thought the books did a good job of clearly explaining these aspects in a way that made them accessible to everyone, not just programmers. 

Nagy and Rose are planning a third book in the series which will be more technical and go into more detail on how to implement the automation. They say that you can use other test frameworks, but in their books they deal exclusively with the Gherkin format and Cucumber family of tools. What would happen if you used an Approval testing tool? Would it still be BDD or would we be doing something else? Let’s go into a little more detail about the key aspects of BDD: discovery, formulation, and automation.

Discovery

The discovery part of BDD is all about developers talking with business stakeholders about what software to build. Through a structured conversation you identify rules and examples and unanswered questions. You can use an ‘example mapping’ workshop for that discussion outlined in this blog post by Cucumber Co-founder, Matt Wynne.

Formulation

The formulation part of BDD is about turning those rules and examples of system behaviour into descriptive scenarios. Each scenario is made as intelligible as possible for business people, consistent with the other scenarios, and unambiguous about system behaviour. There’s a lot of skill involved in doing this!

Automation

The automation part of BDD is where you turn formulated scenarios into executable test cases. Even though the automation is done in a programming language, the focus is still on collaboration with the business stakeholders. Everyone is expected to be able to read and understand these executable scenarios even if they can’t read a programming language.  

Double-Loop TDD

The picture shown at the start of the article from Nagy and Rose’s Discovery BDD book emphasizes the double loop nature of the BDD automation cycle. The outer loop is about building the supporting code needed to make a formulated scenario executable. Test-Driven Development fits within it as the inner loop for implementing the system that fulfills the scenarios. In my experience the inner loop of unit tests goes round within minutes, whereas the outer loop can take hours or even days.  

Later in the book they have a more detailed diagram showing an example BDD process:


Figure 16  from “Discovery – Explore behaviour using examples” by Gaspar Nagy and Seb Rose

This diagram is more complex, so I’m not going to explain it in depth here (for a deep dive take a look at this blog post by Seb Rose, or of course read the book itself!). What I want to point out is that the ‘Develop’ and ‘Implement’ parts of this diagram are showing double-loop TDD again, with slightly more detail than before. For the purpose of comparing a BDD process, with and without Approval testing, I’ve redrawn the diagram to emphasize those parts:

How you formulate, automate, and implement with TDD will all be affected by an approval testing approach. I recently wrote an article ”How to develop new features with Approval Testing, Illustrated with the Lift Kata”. That article goes through a couple of scenarios, how I formulate them as sketches, then automate them with an approval testing tool. Based on the process described in that article I could draw it like this:

What’s different?

  • “Formulate” is called “Sketch” since the method of formulation is visual rather than ‘Given-When-Then’. The purpose is the same though.
  • “Automate” includes writing a Printer as well as the usual kind of ‘glue’ code to access functionality in your application. A Printer can print the state of the software system in a format that matches the Sketch. The printer code will also evolve as you work on the implementation.
  • “Implement” is a slightly modified TDD cycle. With approval tests you still work test-driven and you still refactor frequently, but other aspects may differ. You may improve the Printer and approve the output many times before being ready to show the golden master to others for review.
  • “Review” – this activity is supposed to ensure the executable scenario is suitable to use as living documentation, and that business people can read it. The difference here is that the artifact being reviewed is the Approved Golden Master output, not the sketch you made in the “Formulate” activity. It’s particularly important to make sure business people are involved here because the living documentation that will be kept is a different artifact from the scenario they co-created in the ‘discover’ activities.

But is this still BDD?

I’m happy to report that, yes, this is still BDD! I hope you can see the activities are not that different. Just as importantly, the BDD community is open and welcoming of diversity of practice. This article describes BDD practitioners as forming a ‘centered’ community rather than a bounded community. That means people are open to you varying the exact practices and processes of BDD so long as you uphold some common values. The really central part of BDD is the collaborative discovery process.

In this article I hope I’ve shown that using an approval testing approach upholds that collaborative discovery process. It modifies the way you do formulation, automation, and development, but in a way that retains the iterative, collaborative heart of BDD. For some kinds of system sketches and golden masters might prove to be easier for business people to understand than the more mainstream ‘Given-When-Then’ Gherkin format. In that case an approval testing tool might enable a better collaborative discovery process and propel you closer to the centre of BDD. 

Conclusions

BDD is about a lot more than test automation, and Gherkin is not the only syntax you can use for that part. Approval testing is perfectly compatible with BDD. I’m happy I can both claim to be a member of the BDD community and continue to choose a testing tool that fits the context I’m working in. 🙂 
If you’d like to learn more about Approval testing check out this video of me pair programming with Adrian Bolboaca.

How your team actually writes its code is very important if your organization is trying to build products in an Agile way. This post considers the risks associated with insufficiently Agile coding practices and explains how to identify them before they become major issues. 

Nearly every software organization has high ambitions for increasing their agility and yours is probably one of them. It’s common to bring in experienced coaches to help teams operate with more agility and to discover ways of delivering more value. But, if you’re working on software products, you’ll find it’s hard to realize some of the benefits of Agile without changing the behaviour of developers in the codebase. Too many coaching efforts place little or no emphasis there. 

Agile Coaching helps your business to become more successful by improving the way you plan and deliver software. Technical Agile Coaching specifically focuses on how people write code. How do you know if you need Technical Agile Coaching? Here are three signs.

You spend more time fixing bugs than building new features

Look at all the tasks you work on each week. Ask yourself how much time is being spent on innovative new features, and how much on fixing defects in existing features? For some teams the answer can be as little as 5% of time spent on proactive new work. Now ask yourself – how much more money would our organization make if we spent less time on fixes and more on delivering new features? 

Turning this situation around is about increasing the quality of your work so that fewer fixes are needed, resulting in more time for innovation. Often, the root cause of defects is technical debt and code that is hard to understand and change. 

You can mitigate against this by training your developers to build in quality from the start. Technical Agile Coaching helps teams to improve automated tests and reduce technical debt by demonstrating various techniques and practices for evolving design safely.

Delivery of new features is delayed, sometimes more than once

Are your new features around 80% done for long periods and then take forever to be actually ready for release? Often this is the biggest complaint from customers and other stakeholders. How much would it be worth to your organization for new functionality to be available reliably and on time? 

Late deliveries are often caused by developers not collaborating effectively in the code. To build a new feature they need to bring the whole team’s expertise to bear, and integrate their work seamlessly. Typically, the coding work is not divided up in a way that makes collaboration easy, and changes are not integrated until late in the process.

Technical Agile Coaching helps developers to deliver on time: reliable automated regression tests promote better collaboration with a shared view of the current status; teams learn to divide up the coding work and integrate changes far more frequently than the interval between external deliveries; developers learn to use their tools better and to communicate effectively within the team so they can complete tasks more reliably.

Developers complain the code is so bad they need to re-write the whole thing

Sometimes developers ask for a hiatus in new feature development for several months, even a year, so they can start over by rebuilding the same functionality using new tools and frameworks. This is a significant cost to your business, and a large risk. A more staged approach carries far less risk and allows you to build better functionality with much more manageable cost. 

Usually, an organization arrives in this situation after many years of accumulated technical debt. The technologies chosen originally become outdated and are not upgraded in a timely way. Developers make design decisions and then leave without fully documenting or otherwise transferring design knowledge to new team members. New features are added that were not anticipated in the original design. Gradually the code quality declines and it becomes harder and harder to work with.

Technical Agile Coaching helps developers gain better control over existing code, so they can continue working with it and building new features. Teams learn to migrate code to newer technologies in a series of smaller, less risky steps, adding new functionality as they go. Developers learn to pay off technical debt and to communicate better about design decisions.

Benefits of Technical Agile Coaching

Technical Agile Coaching helps developers to change the way they work, day to day, minute by minute, in their codebase. They learn to increase the quality of the code in their product and work more effectively as a team. The coach works closely with the developers while they are writing code to remind, reinforce, teach, and demonstrate Agile practices. With Technical Agile Coaching you should expect to see the following benefits:

  • Reductions in technical debt
  • Better automated regression tests
  • Improved communication between developers within the team
  • Smaller, safer changes integrated often and documented well
  • Improved effectiveness using team development tools and IDEs.

Technical Agile Coaching helps a team to improve how they write code, and begin to use more effective agile development practices together.

If you’re interested in getting some Technical Agile Coaching, please contact us at ProAgile. We have many coaches with a lot of experience in agile development and several with technical coaching expertise.

Three factors affecting your agility

Note: this post originally appeared here https://www.praqma.com/stories/coding-is-like-baking/

Let’s talk about cakes and baking. It’s similar to making software. No really! How quickly you can bake a fantastic cake depends on three main factors. Turns out, it’s the same three for software.

Note: This article was first published on Praqma’s blog

In essence, agility is about your ability to respond to change. I can gain a competitive advantage if I can update my software quickly when I see an opportunity in the market. As a software developer, I’m going to work together with other professionals to decide what new features to build at any one time. The important question is, when we’ve agreed on a particular change and realized the cost of delay is significant: how quickly can my team and I make this change?

How quickly can you make a change to your software?

Allow me to answer that question by comparing it with baking. How long does it take to bake a cake? As with software, I think there are three main factors.

The first factor is how complex a cake it is. How many layers? How many kinds of filling? How fancy will the decorations be? Similarly, changes to a piece of software vary in how big and complex they are, and that will affect how long they take.

The second factor is the skill of the baker(s). When you make fancy flowers out of sugar paste how convincing are they? Can you whip cream without it turning into butter? Do you know how to use a thermometer to get perfectly thick and creamy egg custard? If your skills are poor, you might need to throw out your first attempt and make a second batch of custard or cream or flowers, which obviously slows you down. Developing software is similar – skill, experience and knowledge of particular tools all come into play. If your code changes are poorly designed and fail the tests or the code review, that can similarly slow you down.

When baking, the next major factor for how long it will take is the kind of kitchen you’re going to work in. If I’m a contestant on a show like Bake-Off, I will have a sparkling clean workbench and all the gadgets and accessories I could possibly need. Dirty bowls and saucepans vanish as if by magic when the camera is turned the other way. Fantastic mouthwatering creations appear in a very short space of time.

In contrast, if I’m at home, I might need to clear a space on a worktop before I can start. I could waste valuable minutes hunting around for an electric whisk attachment in an overfull drawer. I might belatedly realize my cake tin is too small for the project I have planned or that I set the oven to the wrong temperature. Creating that amazing cake is not going to be as quick and smooth as it could be.

Time to Bake Cake Equation

The worst conditions for baking that I’ve experienced were probably in my shared student house at university. Not only were accessories like whisks and cake tins hard to come by, a huge pile of dirty dishes obscured the sink most of the time. After some weeks, we discovered one of the third years had decided his final exams were so important that he had started to leave all his washing up “for the first years to take care of”, as he put it. I hope you don’t have anyone like that on your team!

Unhappy Chef

In the same way, how long it will take you to build a feature will depend on the state of the environment you’re working in. For a software developer, that environment includes not only the build tools and programming language as you would expect, but also the state of the existing code. Is it clean and easy to understand? Is the current design amenable to the planned change? You might need to spend time cleaning up and fixing things before you can start.

There’s also the build and deployment pipeline the team has set up. Are the regression tests quick to execute and generally passing? Is the deployment automated? Can I observe logs and find bugs in production? If that infrastructure is well oiled and running smoothly, it will make a big difference for how soon my software change can be rolled out.

Time to Build Feature Equation

If you want to be really agile, you need to consider how to improve some or all of the factors in this equation. If you want to build complex, valuable features quickly, you need to make sure you have developers with the skills to build them. You also need to invest in the “kitchen” they are working in.

When I consult with different organizations, I often see problems with developer skill and poor development environments. Investment in both can lead to big gains in agility. You want the time to market for a new feature to be dominated by the essential complexity of that feature, not the accidental complexity that comes from poor code quality, testing and deployment automation. Coding is like baking. Working in a mess is not agile!

Note: this article was first published on Praqma’s website

Experiences Pairing with Llewellyn Falco

How does a Technical Agile Coach improve work in a development team? When Llewellyn Falco asked me to pair with him at a client I jumped at the chance to see how effective mob programming is for introducing technical agile practices.

Day one: head first into the mob

My first day as a visiting Technical Agile Coach begins with coding, in a mob. All the developers in the team and I enter our names into a mob timer. It will prompt us to switch roles every 5 minutes, so we will all take a turn at the keyboard. Llewellyn takes the facilitator role, sitting at the back. I find mob programming is great way to get to know a team and their codebase. After only a few minutes, I take the Driver role, which forces to very quickly pick up what’s going on. I need to understand both the current task, the IDE and the particular code we’re working on. The Navigator prompts me and the whole team helps me to find where to click and what to type.

Llewellyn has worked with this client on and off for half a year, and he was here all the previous week. This team has quite a bit of experience mob programming with him and a couple of other visiting coaches. Llewellyn gets involved facilitating the mob from time to time, usually to draw our attention to some improvement we could make in the code, or in the way we’re working together. When the team is stuck, or going in the wrong direction, he will step in and take the Navigator role for a while. That can happen when we’re doing a tricky refactoring, or if he spots we aren’t taking full advantage of our tools.

After 90 minutes the team has to go to their stand-up meeting. Usually we’d mob for about 2 hours with a team, but today we have a longer breathing space before the Learning Hour. Llewellyn and I take the chance to discuss the challenges this team is facing and how we can coach them more effectively when we meet them again tomorrow. Later this week he’s going to get me to take the Facilitator role and he’ll be in the mob instead. Next week he’ll fly home and leave me here for a week coaching by myself, so we’re already preparing for that handover.

2

The Learning Hour

The Learning Hour is a fixture in the calendar of everyone in the department. It’s one hour devoted to learning new techniques in software development, every day, led by Llewellyn or a visiting coach like me. Not everyone can make it every day, so the planned topics are circulated in advance with an indication of whether it’s a coding session or not. When it’s coding not as many managers/scrum masters/product owners turn up. Actually some of them do enjoy attending these more technical sessions to get a better insight into what challenges their developers are facing.

The lesson I’ve decided to begin with uses the Tennis Refactoring Kata, an exercise I’ve done many times with teams. I am hoping it will be fun and not too difficult, especially compared with the production code they are used to. The exercise has comprehensive unit tests that quickly fail if you make a mistake. The developers aren’t used to having that, and they soon find they like having fast feedback on the accuracy of their work.

Lunch dating

Lunch is next up, and it turns out I’m not eating with Llewellyn. He’s set me up to go out with one of the developers from a team I won’t otherwise be working with. It’s a very deliberate policy Llewellyn has to help me to get to know the wider organization outside of the teams I mob with. He’s found that daily one-on-one chats with key people preferably in a social setting, is an effective way of becoming well-connected in an organization. Today it also gives me an opportunity to offer some career advice to an ambitious developer in a similar position to where I was ten or so years ago.

After lunch Llewellyn introduces me to a second team that I’ll be mob programming with, then leaves me to it. He’s confident this team is working well together and it will be straightforward for me to facilitate without him. We get stuck straight in to some front-end development work, improving a new account creation form. My javascript is a little rusty, but I find that’s not really a problem – they know their tools. I just need to keep an eye on how the mob is running, and think a little outside the box. I spot that what they’re doing will likely break some of the automated GUI tests, so we have a chat about how to handle that.

In the meantime, Llewellyn is working with a different team who are new to him. He begins teaching them the basics of mob programming, and getting to know their specific challenges. A future visiting coach might get to work with them once they’re up to speed.

Managing up and down

At the end of the session, we take a short break together and discuss how things are going. We have a little slack in our schedule, and Llewellyn spots one of the senior managers having a coffee. He takes the chance to greet him and book a short meeting the following day. Llewellyn’s heard there are plans afoot to break apart some of the teams, and he wants to ask the boss to protect a particular team from that reorganization because they are really starting to gel and mob well together.

For the third mobbing session of the day Llewellyn and I are pair-coaching again. It’s similar to the first session. All the teams we’re working with are really struggling with code quality and lack of automated tests. Even if ostensibly we’re working on adding a feature, most of the time we’re addressing code smells and adding unit tests.

The last thing Llewellyn and I do before we leave for the day is send a very short email to the department managers – the people authorizing our invoices. We write one sentence about each mobbing session and the learning hour, summarizing what we’ve done. It makes our work more visible to the decision makers.

Moving in the right direction

I’m impressed with how much Llewellyn and the other visiting coaches have already achieved with these developers. Most people have a positive, curious outlook, and consider learning new skills to be a normal part of work. Llewellyn will often pause the mob timer, pull out his laptop, and spend five minutes showing some relevant presentation slides. Some of the developers here know certain refactorings so well I find myself learning techniques from the teams not just from Llewellyn.

3

Optimising for when we’re not there

That’s not to say there aren’t problems. The codebase is still large, badly structured, slow to build, and lacking automated tests in many areas. Many developers in the mobbing teams are relatively new to the company, and most have little previous experience of Test-Driven Development or refactoring techniques. However, their starting point isn’t what’s important, the crucial thing is that they are continuing to improve and learn. What we’re doing here is creating momentum in the right direction, teaching skills and strategies so people can continue to make things better when we’re no longer present.

4

The wider organisation is also just beginning to adopt Agile practices and DevOps, and it’s not working smoothly yet. Many teams are still sitting in cubicles. The test, build and deployment infrastructure relies too much on manually executed steps.

There are several other agile coaches here at the same time as Llewellyn and me who are more focussed on improving process and product management. Later in the week I attend a sprint demo where there is much talk of A/B testing and hypothesis-driven development. People seem really keen to understand their customer needs and to verify they are building the right thing. The thing is, the starting point is less important than the direction of travel.

After a week of pair-coaching I feel confident I can pick up and continue Llewellyn’s work with the development teams at this client. I’ve got to know the people, the particular challenges they face, and have a structure in place that will let me continue the changes Llewellyn is initiating. I’m actually quite surprised how smoothly the handover has gone.

Visiting Technical Agile Coach

Not many coaches are generous enough to invite visitors to pair with them. Llewellyn has a whole list of people he’s inviting to visit in 2018, and I feel lucky to be one of them. It seems to me that everyone’s a winner. Of course Llewellyn wants to show off and spread his coaching methods to the visitors, but also to learn from them and get their feedback on his work. At the same time the client gets the benefit of teaching & advice from many different visitors. They do have to pay two coaches rather than one during the week we overlap, but having such a smooth handover gives them the ability to get more weeks of coaching than Llewellyn could provide by himself. So far the client seems to feel it’s worth the additional expense.

Taking what I’ve learnt home with me

I plan to start recommending this style of Technical Agile Coaching to my clients back home in Sweden. For a start I really enjoy coding, mobbing and teaching all day, but more importantly it seems to be more effective than what I’ve been doing until now. For years I’ve used Coding Dojos to teach the theory and practice of TDD, but all too often the initiative fizzles out and the dojos stop happening when I’m no longer there.

I think this combination of daily mob programming sessions with a learning hour is particularly effective at teaching both theory and practice. The lunches, the presence of other agile coaches, and sending daily summary mails connects me better with the wider organization. This has been a really valuable two weeks for me. I feel pair-coaching with Llewellyn has taught me an effective way to introduce technical agile practices and change developer behaviour for the better.

5

This post was originally published on Praqma’s blog

A short story about Pre-tested Integration

the three

Continuous Integration and Code Review are strongly correlated with success. Many use Pull Requests for code review, but for co-located teams this can be an obstacle for CI. Is there a better way?

There are three developers on the (fictitious) team: Annika, Boris and Carol. Annika is a recent hire, fresh from university, Boris is the team lead, and Carol has been around the longest. Each of them is working on a different task. They all synchronized their work with their shared master branch when they arrived at the office today, and now it’s approaching morning coffee time. They have all made some changes in the code which they’d like to share with the rest of the team.

Annika is working on a local branch called ‘red’. She checks it’s up-to-date with master and pushes it to a remote branch named ‘ready/red’. It’s similar for Boris and Carol. They are on blue and orange branches respectively and push their changes to ready/blue and ready/orange.

the three

The Build Server is set up so that it detects new branches on the Version Control Server that follow a naming convention. Any branch beginning with ‘ready/’ is scheduled for integration, and only one of these integration builds runs at a time. The Build Server delegates builds to one or more agents,and since the ready-job agent is idle, it picks up the ‘ready/red’ change straight away and leaves the other two ready-branch builds in the queue.

build servers

The build job has several steps. First, the agent merges the ready-branch into a local copy of the master branch. Annika’s changes get a simple fast-forward. The agent performs a full build, static analysis, code style check, and unit test. Everything goes well, so the agent pushes the merge result up to the Version Control Server and posts a message on the team message board.

Things start out similarly for Boris’ ready/blue branch. The build agent takes a copy of master from the git server and merges in the ready-branch. This isn’t a fast-forward merge, since there is a new commit in master for the ‘red’ changes, but it’s still ok. So long as the agent can do the merge without finding any conflicts the build can continue.

The agent then proceeds to the next build steps. Unfortunately, Boris hadn’t noticed that one of his changes caused a test failure. The team has previously agreed that the code in master should always pass the tests, so this means Boris’ changes shouldn’t be shared. The build agent sends a message to Boris telling him about the failed tests, discards its merged branch, and moves on. Carol’s ready/orange branch is up next. The build agent starts again with a fresh copy of the latest master taken from the git server. Carol’s changes also merge without difficulty and this time both build and tests pass. The build agent pushes the merge commit to the server and notifies the team.

build servers

Boris and Carol are having a cup of coffee while they wait for the build server to integrate their changes. Annika is chatting with the Product Owner about the new feature she plans to work on next, ‘cyan’. When they get back to their desks they see the messages from the build server.

Annika is happy to see her changes integrated successfully. She fetches the latest master from the remote git server. She’s now completed the work on the ‘red’ task, and her changes should undergo a code review. She marks the ‘red’ task as finished in the issue tracker and adds an agenda item to the team’s next scheduled code review meeting, which is later that week. Annika selects a new task to work on and checks out a local branch from master called ‘cyan’. Boris sees the message about his failed tests and realizes immediately what he missed. He’s a little embarrassed about his mistake, but happy his teammates are not affected. They may not even notice what’s happened. Boris takes the opportunity to merge the latest changes from master into his ‘blue’ branch. He is quickly able to address the problem with the tests and pushes an update to ready/blue. The build agent gets to work straight away.

Carol is not finished with the ‘orange’ task, but is happy to see her initial changes integrated successfully. She fetches master and merges it into ‘orange’ before continuing work there. She’s noticed a design change that would make her task easier. She plans the refactoring in steps so she can push small changes frequently as she completes the re-design. Sharing her changes with the team often will make it easier for everyone to avoid costly merges. Later that week, in the code review meeting, the team looks at Annika’s changes for the ‘red’ task. It represents a couple of days’ work. The code review tool presents a summary of all the commits involved and they discuss all the changes in the development of the ‘red’ feature.

Unfortunately, Boris and Carol are not happy with a part of the design Annika has made and the code formatting needs improving in places. The outcome of the meeting is that they agree to pair program with Annika on a refactoring of the design, and encourage her to initiate informal design discussions more often during development. The idea is that the more experienced developers, Boris and Carol, should help Annika to learn better design skills. The team finds the code-formatting issues a bit annoying since this kind of detail shouldn’t be in focus for a code review meeting. They create a task to improve the code-style checker in the pre-tested integration build to catch any similar code formatting problem in future.

Commentary

This development process is working really well for Annika, Boris and Carol, and pre-tested integration is a small but important piece. They are not using pull requests, but they have checks on what code is allowed into the master branch, and they have good code-review culture. Integration to master happens at a faster cadence than the flow of work-items. That’s important. Integration is less painful the more often you do it and you might not want to break your work items down to the same small granularity that would be best for code changes. You also don’t necessarily want to delay your integration by waiting for a teammate to review your pull request.

Strictly speaking, this process is not Trunk-Based development since there are more branches involved than just trunk, but so long as the integration is frequent in practice it’s indistinguishable. The benefit of this over Trunk-Based development is, of course, that Boris or any other developer can’t unwittingly break master for the rest of the team.

If you’re using Jenkins you can easily automate the integration process with our Pretested Integration plugin. It’s not difficult to implement this functionality yourself for other build servers. Whichever approach your team chooses, I recommend you settle on a process that results in frequent integration together with collaborative and constructive code-reviews.