What Is Version Control?

Version Control Software

What Is Version Control? | How It Works | Who Can Benefit from It? |
What to Look for in Version Control Software

Having a solid IT infrastructure is essential when it comes to facilitating the long-term success of your business. A large component of this includes implementing proper version control software, but not every entrepreneur understands what this involves.

So, what is version control? We’ve got the answers you’re looking for. Let’s explore everything you should keep in mind.

What Is Version Control?

Put simply, version control software is a system that allows you to seamlessly manage changes that have been made to different files. This is particularly useful for large organizations since the amount of documentation involved in running a company of this size can easily become overwhelming.

Companies that don’t implement a version control solution are forced to either manage changes by hand or find a viable alternative that may not be as effective.

How Does It Work?

Version control software provides different designers, developers, and other members of your company’s internal teams to collaborate on a particular project seamlessly. It’s not uncommon for projects with multiple participants to experience a large number of changes within a short period of time.

Occasionally, members of the same team will also be working from different time zones, which can add even more variables to the situation. In order to ensure that everybody has the most current code for the project, a version control system aims to streamline changes that have been made and make them easily accessible and organized to everyone involved.

Not only does this aid with file management, but it also drastically decreases the amount of time that it takes to complete a project. For companies that frequently deal with tight deadlines, this is an attribute that can’t be overlooked.

Who Can Benefit from It?

It should come as no surprise that any business that deals with development can highly benefit from implementing version control software. Since a version control system can facilitate how easily you compare files and monitor changes that have been made before implementing code, it has a place within any kind of development.

Separating projects into different versions is also an ideal way to ensure that you properly keep track of your production progress. This can also greatly aid quality assurance, as there won’t be any confusion about what build needs to be tested.

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What Should I Look for in Version Control Software?

Many entrepreneurs are apprehensive about implementing version control software as a result of not knowing what to look for. Different version control solutions come with attributes to satisfy different needs, so it can be difficult at first to choose the one that’s right for you.

Let’s take a brief look at what you should keep an eye out for.

Automation

Regardless of the type of development project you are working on, automation is a key part of the process. More specifically, you can automate both testing and deployment in order to save as much time as possible while allowing your team members to work on their core responsibilities.

You should search for a version control system that is able to handle millions of automated instances each day. Otherwise, you run the risk of encountering complications as your project begins to scale.

Collaborative Functionality

As previously mentioned, your development team may involve a large number of people that are located all across the globe. So, version control software that supports global access is essential to integrate.

Since even minor version differences can have a drastic impact on the project as a whole, keeping everyone up to speed should be one of your highest priorities. Fortunately, there are version control systems that exist specifically to handle this concern.

Of course, you should also ensure that you find a version control solution that integrates the proper amount of security. Proper access management and identity verification should never be overlooked, especially since the cybercrime industry is projected to be worth over $6 trillion by the end of 2021.

Find our more about Team Collaboration Tools and Strategy

Highly-Detailed Tracking

When tracking changes throughout the numerous versions of your files, you’ll need to have access to as much information as possible. This means you should be able to clearly see what team members made changes to the code, when it occurred, and why these changes were made.

Version control software logs all the changes that your team members have made along with the full extent of the accompanying data.

As you might expect, this is especially important in development projects that need to adhere to certain regulations or guidelines. Projects in the healthcare field, for example, must remain compliant with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) standards in order to avoid fines, penalties, and damage to the firm’s reputation.

Disaster Recovery

In the event that your development team loses access to the product code, they will be forced to either redo certain development obligations or wait until the solution is available. Unfortunately, neither of these are viable options since deadlines are constantly drawing closer.

Version control software that implements proper disaster recovery will pull code from a repository that is stored at a separate location. This essentially functions as a replica of the project code that can be used in the event that the original is no longer able to be accessed.

Properly Implementing Version Control Can Seem Difficult

But the above information will make the process far easier than you initially believe. Now that you know what version control is and what to look for in specialized software, you can make the most out of your internal processes, and hit productivity metrics like never before.

Ecrion’s customer communications management solution leverages a version control model that provides solid support for your team. Want to learn more about what we have to offer? Feel free to reach out to us or request a demo to try out our services!

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