As developers, one of our chief challenges is releasing new, amazing functionality on time and at the pace demanded of our businesses’ increasingly accelerated development cycles. Our desire to meet these expectations has made our roles among the most stressful jobs in technology – with a CareerCast poll listing the positions of software engineers and computer programmers among the top 10 highest stress roles in the industry.
Does it have to be this way? I don’t think so. Combining our passion for development with a set of tools that eases some of hardest (or simply most tedious) parts of our roles can have us feeling as if we’re sitting cross-legged, floating on a cloud, typing away on our laptops in a state of perpetual Zen. That vision can be achieved when we float our efforts on the SuiteCloud Development Framework.
To ease the process associated with building and deploying new functionality in the cloud, last year, NetSuite introduced the SuiteCloud Development Framework (SDF), a one-stop shop for developers to build, test, deploy and publish applications without ever leaving the code. Developers have the source code of everything in the platform – including object, configuration and logic which allows them to take advantage of any revision control system they choose for version control and team development. And because it’s a decoupled environment, developers can build on SDF and deploy across any environment, complete with built-in validation controls and dependency management.
In turn, partners and customers alike can automate business processes via SuiteScript, build and package customizations via the UI, build and distribute SuiteApps, perform configuration tasks for implementing NetSuite environments, perform audit tasks or manage changes in NetSuite environments.
Since its launch, we’ve made some major improvements to make this platform a “developer’s heaven,” as I like to call it. Here’s some of what I think will be the most helpful improvements.
Direct deployment. Developers can directly deploy applications to development, sandbox or production accounts, greatly simplifying development and deployment practices for ISVs and customers. For instance, customers can deploy customizations en masse from the sandbox to the QA sandbox to obtain QA approval, and then use the exact same SDF project to deploy the same project code and objects to production.
Version control. Customers can check an entire project including custom objects like custom records, custom fields, and saved searches into a Code Repository to be under version control. This eases change management.
Collaborative cloud development. Developers can now collaborate in a separate dedicated development environment that makes it easier to manage customizations and application code, providing more familiarity, more control and more autonomy than ever. Development teams can also easily manage cloud source code with the same process and rigor that they use in other projects, increasing quality, compliance and control.
The ability to handle dependencies. Say, for instance, you install a bundle that referenced a field that already existed in your production instance and ended up with a new redundant custom field. With SuiteCloud Development Framework, you can reference an existing field or object without having it be duplicated.
Same if your project contains an object that requires the existence of another object, SDF can detected before the project or customization is deployed which bring a great degree of certainty to the deployment process.
With the right foundation, software development can drive business value, without driving the joy out of our work. Check out more information on the SuiteCloud Developer Network here and consider joining our LinkedIn group to connect with other NetSuite developers.