Polarion Enterprise Agile: Bridging the 'Speed vs. Compliance' Gap

By Editor

Today’s tough competition means that enterprise developers have to rapidly produce innovative software. Agile methods and approaches have a proven record of delivering better software at a faster pace. But… and it’s a big “but” in regulated industries, many enterprises must also meticulously document everything they do in order to demonstrate compliance with regulations and standards. The result is a Speed vs. Compliance gap. It’s a bit like having to drive a sports car with the parking brake half engaged. Let’s face it – when you have to be compliant, you’re never going to be agile in the same way as a business that doesn’t. But your competitors have the same problem. So anything you can do to become more agile can amount to a significant competitive advantage. And that’s where Polarion Software’s lifecycle management solutions can really help you deliver the goods.


Agile – Beyond the Methodology Most people think “methodology” when “agile” is mentioned. But agility goes well beyond the working process. For example, enterprise shops can gain a great deal of agility simply by managing things around their process more effectively.

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A huge burden in regulated environments is keeping track of who did what, or who changed what, when, and why. Using Polarion, that’s really the least of your worries because Polarion automatically and transparently maintains a forensic-level audit trail. Every change to a requirement, every passed or failed test case, every change to the code that fixed a defect, and more, is all tracked in the automated history. The information you need for auditors is easy to extract and display in printable, exportable “LiveReport” pages using visual widgets that enable even non-technical users to quickly build robust reports. Here’s what one of our aerospace industry customers told us about how easily they were able to handle an audit:

“The use of Polarion during the DO-178B audit was, simply stated, incredible. The Designated Engineering Representative (DER), Defense Department representative, and the two representatives from the prime contractor (software quality and software engineering) all remarked that Polarion was “impressive”. We were able to easily and quickly show that all changes to our software were tracked and reviewed and that our process was followed.”

That last sentence points to the benefits of Polarion’s automated workflow control that adapts to whatever process or methodology you use. It even supports FDA-compliant e-signatures for different actions. Once set up, your process: agile, waterfall, hybrid – is enforced transparently and painlessly. People simply cannot skip or forget steps. No errors, no time wasted backtracking. And there’s no need to train everyone to know the whole process – they just change the status of their assigned tasks and move on. Efficient. Agile. These few features alone deliver a significant agility boost. And it’s only the beginning. There’s much more, including things like:

  • Full Traceability from Request to Implementation: review the impact of planned or implemented change in single click.

  • Fast Start: Import your existing data from Microsoft® Word or Excel® to create your Product Backlog online, in minutes.

  • Collaboration in Hybrid Process Scenarios use Polarion’s exclusive Round-trip features to share and re-import data with external contributors.

It’s About Being as Agile as You Can Be If you have projects or teams in your company that can employ agile development methodologies like Scrum, Polarion can make them even more agile with ready-made, customizable templates for Scrum projects, complete with backlogs, sprint boards, and more.

Even if you must stick with non-agile methods like V-Model, etc. Polarion’s unified solution, with open APIs and other ways to leverage investment in your current automated testing, UML modeling and other tools, can provide significant productivity, efficiency, and information management boosts that result in a more agile enterprise overall. As usual, our customers say it better than we can:

“Using Polarion solutions, we are better able to handle the product development process end-to-end, including all documents needed in our complex and cross-linked development systems. Major benefits for us include the automated traceability, impact analysis and suspect link traces fully unified with change and version management. The biggest benefit for WaveLight is the ease of reuse (of artifacts such as Requirements) across different projects.” (Werner Motzet, WaveLight)

Here’s the bottom line: whatever the methodology, whatever constraints you face, Polarion can help you be as agile as you can be. In the Enterprise software development space, there’s a good chance that that can translate to being more agile than your competition.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at