Woman DevOps Green

Elevate Your Developer Experience with Atlassian's Compass

June 18, 2024
Bryan Robison

Organizations are beginning to recognize the importance of delivering an exceptional developer experience (DevEx). In fact, research from Gartner found that creating a high-quality developer experience has become a critical priority for C-suites.

Investing in intuitive DevOps platforms that facilitate collaboration, accelerate feedback loops, and streamline the software development process is key to keeping dev teams happy and productive. 

That’s why enterprises are turning to Atlassian’s Compass, as it provides a centralized place for teams to keep work flowing and tackle the challenges of software development. In this article, we dive into what Compass is, how the developer portal works, and how it can help your organization deliver an enhanced developer experience.

What is Atlassian Compass?

Having just launched in October 2023, Compass may still be new to you. Atlassian’s developer experience platform provides software development teams with a centralized place to track and visualize the health of their distributed software components. 

What truly distinguishes organizations that provide an excellent developer experience from those that don’t is their focus on well-structured processes and prioritizing their people. Compass unites teams with transparent, reliable technology that promotes a healthy DevOps culture, enhances reliability, and increases velocity.

What problems does Compass solve for software developers?

Unlike traditional monolithic applications, modern software is built from multiple, independently connected components and microservices, each managed by different teams with distinct tools, processes, and deadlines. This complex distributed system often leads to a phenomenon known as "software sprawl," where the lack of cohesion and visibility can drain productivity and stifle innovation.

Compass addresses this challenge by offering a central hub where engineering organizations can monitor, manage, and optimize their software components and microservices. If you have a lot of projects built on microservices, Compass provides visibility into the availability of those components and microservices and how they work together. By bringing teams together and providing them with the right insights, Compass empowers organizations to maintain high-quality standards and deliver exceptional value to customers.

How does Compass improve the software development process?

Compass operates through several core features designed to enhance the developer experience and streamline the software development process:

1. Unified Software Component Catalog

The cornerstone of Compass is its unified software component catalog, which acts as a developer portal providing a single-pane-of-glass view of everything they need to build and operate software. It consolidates all software components into a central repository, offering a clear and organized view of the entire software architecture. This eliminates the chaos of navigating multiple systems and helps teams quickly find the information they need.

atlassian compass software catalog

Image Source: Atlassian

2. Health Scorecards and DORA Metrics

To ensure that software components are healthy and functioning optimally, Compass includes health scorecards and DORA (DevOps Research and Assessment) metrics. These tools provide visibility and reporting across the entire architecture and team health. Health scorecards offer insights into the status and performance of each component, while DORA metrics measure critical aspects such as deployment frequency, lead time for changes, time to restore service, and change failure rate. Together, these metrics help teams identify areas for improvement and ensure that they meet high performance and reliability standards.

Atlassian Compass Scorecard

Image Source: Atlassian

3. Software Templates

Compass helps speed up and standardize component creation with customizable software templates. These templates adhere to organizational standards and best practices, ensuring consistency and quality across all components. By providing a structured approach to component development, templates reduce the time and effort required to create new software elements, allowing teams to focus on innovation and delivery.

Atlassian Compass Templates

Image Source: Atlassian

4. Extensibility

One of the standout features of Compass is its extensibility. The platform integrates data from over 20 different services and allows for further customization through Atlassian Forge, a development platform for building Atlassian apps. This means that organizations can tailor Compass to fit their unique needs, integrating it seamlessly with their existing tools and workflows.

Atlassian Compass Integration

Image Source: Atlassian

How Compass Enhances The Developer Experience

Compass is designed to address several key challenges that developers face in modern software development environments. Here’s how it helps organizations improve DevOps practices and deliver a better developer experience:

1. Reduced Context Switching 

Frequent context switching puts a major damper on productivity. Compass helps the development team reduce context switching by providing a unified interface where all necessary information and tools are easily accessible. This minimizes the time developers spend switching between different applications and platforms, allowing them to focus more on coding and problem-solving.

2. Standardized Tools and Processes

Inconsistent tool usage and processes can lead to confusion and inefficiency. Compass standardizes the tools and processes across teams, ensuring everyone is on the same page. This not only improves efficiency but also enhances collaboration and communication within and between teams.

3. Clear Ownership and Dependencies

Unclear ownership and dependencies can cause delays and errors in software development. Compass provides clear visibility into who owns each component and what dependencies exist between them. This transparency helps teams coordinate their efforts more effectively and avoid potential issues before they arise.

4. Improved Collaboration and Accelerated Feedback Loops

Effective collaboration and rapid feedback loops are essential components of a good DevEx. Compass fosters collaboration by bringing together all the necessary information and tools in one place. It also accelerates feedback loops by providing real-time insights and metrics, enabling teams to quickly identify and address issues.

Get Started with Compass

In today’s fast-paced tech world, the developer experience has become a core focus for companies. Not only does it keep employees engaged and sticking around, it’s an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to your bottom line.

If you are ready to invest in your organization’s developer experience, this webinar co-hosted with Atlassian is a great place to start. In addition to watching demos on how Compass works, you will learn how to leverage your tech stack to implement a game-changing DevEx strategy that improves both team and organizational outcomes.

Regardless of where you are in your DevOps journey, Praecipio can help you choose the right platform for your business. Count on our DevOps solutions to guide you when implementing continuous delivery and automation, and enhance collaboration between development and operations teams.

Reach out to our team to help you build a DevOps culture that harmonizes your people, processes, and tools.

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