New features every 6 weeks: what's included in our scheduled software updates
Your business never stands still -- so neither does our software. Remaining up to date with the latest technology keeps your business ahead of the pack by providing you with new or enhanced features and reducing potential security risks. In addition to these, they can also improve software performance, eliminate known bugs, offer better compatibility with different devices and remove outdated features taking up valuable hard drive space. It goes without saying that regular updates to your is software is critical to your business's success.
What is Enable's approach and how often is DealTrack updated?
Each DealTrack update is carefully constructed from a combination of invaluable client feedback, research on current market demands and technical recommendations from our experienced development team. This means we learn from any past problems, look ahead to future trends and make the most of the latest technological advancements.
Our clients find this a refreshing contrast to other software companies, with some releasing just one or two updates a year! This can lead to severe functionality limitations, poor performance, whilst also opening up the risk of security breaches and attacks that could potentially result in a significant loss to revenue, reputation and even customer base.
With this in mind, let's dive in and take a look at what's included in DealTrack's scheduled updates.
The result of the time spent gathering requirements for our updates means we can offer our clients the following:
What sort of things are normally included in DealTrack software updates?
Our updates often contain information on performance enhancements that have been made to DealTrack, such as improvements to our hosting infrastructure, or changes that make the software more responsive for users. In the April '19 update we drew attention to some improvements we've made to the scalability of our Microsoft Azure cloud platform, and some things we've done to make our deal approval functionality faster.
Brand new modules
In our February '19 update we introduced a brand new module called the watchlist. Last year we added a new cash module. In our product newsletters we share a full breakdown of the features available in the new module -- what it does, how it works and provides screenshots to give a preview of what the module looks like. As a general rule you will need to contact our Client Services team to extend your subscription to cover new modules.
From time to time we make improvements to existing features. Taking the December '18 update as an example, we introduced improvements to the reconciliation and forecasting modules. Changes of this kind should normally take effect in your instance of the product automatically. If the change requires additional configuration you will need to contact a member of the Client Services team to do this for you.
Alongside all the updates that represent a visual or functional change to DealTrack, there are also vital background enhancements which take place. These enhancements ensure that the code base itself is maintained to ensure complete piece of mind for both our end users and our Development team. In our November '18 update, we made a number of security improvements, such as adopting HTTP Strict Transport Security, updating third-party libraries and mitigating brute-force attacks. A few other examples include:
- Infrastructure improvements
- Server resource management
- Technical research tasks
- Future planning
With regular enhancements to existing functionality and powerful background performance improvements, all DealTrack users can benefit from each update. Each accompanying newsletter will explain every system element that has been updated. These newsletters are available to view within the product updates section of our help center. Our updates are designed to be as intuitive as possible, as such there are certain features that we only make available by request. This approach means that there are no surprises or unexpected features appearing without our client's prior knowledge.
How we use automation
As well as the time we spend on designing and building updates, our development team also ensures that the deployment runs as smoothly as possible. This is achieved by utilising a cutting-edge automated deployment tool called Octopus Deploy. Using automated deployments greatly reduces the risk of downtime during a deployment and helps decrease the time required to perform a release. Being an automated process, it is repeatable and reliable, mitigating the risk of potential human error involved in manual deployments.
Previewing new features
DealTrack needs to incorporate a number of important attributes. It must conform to the requirements defined in the functional specification, be secure, reliable, efficient, maintainable and provide a high standard of usability for end users. Despite each update being tested in-house in line with our development teams rigorous testing procedures, we also encourage clients to log into DealTrack for a sneak preview of new features.
Each update is first released to your UAT (user acceptance testing) environment, providing the perfect opportunity to try out the latest changes.
Approximately six weeks after an update is deployed to UAT it will then be deployed to your live environment. Our automated deployment technology means any disruption is kept to a complete minimum.
Keeping your software up to date is now even more critical than ever. Our development team are constantly adding new and improved features to the DealTrack product to ultimately make an improved and more secure experience for all of our clients. At Enable, we absorb all the strain involved in keeping DealTrack up to date with our iterative updates. This leaves you to focus on the day to day running of your business whilst we maintain the tools being used.