The concept of zero-touch version control has gained popularity in recent years – particularly among developers. The approach promises a streamlined workflow, where check-ins and check-outs of applications are automated. On the surface, this might seem like a great idea, promising less administrative work and more freedom for developers. However, once you delve a little deeper you see that things aren’t quite as rosy as they appear. Let us show you.


The Illusion of Simplicity
Zero-touch version control promises simplicity and a reduced workload. Because of that, it’s hardly surprising that dev teams everywhere are clamoring to implement it or find solutions that offer the functionality. The problem is, as soon as you understand how it delivers this simplicity, the reality hits home. 

Essentially it allows multiple developers to work on the same application without having an awareness of each other’s modifications. That sentence alone should demonstrate the risk of overwriting or data loss. And as much as developers want an easier life, if they have to rework, or restore constantly then it’s actually quite the opposite.

Imagine a scenario where you have an outdated version of an application in your workflow. You make changes and integrate them back into the system. However, unknown to you, a colleague with an older version might upload their changes, inadvertently wiping out your modifications. Worse still, different applications with identical names could lead to overwrites, with the system failing to flag these critical conflicts.

All in, that leads to applications either being offline, which frustrates end users, or delivering unreliable data which if left unchecked can result in businesses making decisions on what they believe is the truth when the reality could be very different.

Quality Control: The Heart of Reliable BI Solutions

At PlatformManager, we believe in the importance of a structured process for both app development and bringing applications into production. This process involves rigorous steps: publishing to acceptance, reviewing changes, thorough testing, and workflow adherence – to name just a few. 

These steps ensure that database changes are implemented effectively and that business users are made aware of any changes before an application goes live.

Our goal is to enable the business user to work without interruption. Any disruption in their workflow can be costly for the company. The application needs to be trustworthy, and the only way to achieve this is through extensive quality control throughout the application’s lifecycle.

Without naming names, there are products out there that can restore a script in production – offering a roll-back feature – but this comes with uncertainties. There’s no guarantee that the data is still intact or that the application will function correctly post-rollback. These elements need to be thoroughly tested before any actions are taken.

Zero-touch version control might reduce work in the short term, but it substantially increases risk. Developer freedom, while appealing in theory, often translates to less security in practice. 

Fostering Collaboration Over Automation

At PlatformManager, we are committed to helping developers work together more effectively. We’ve built a platform that does exactly that – but it still needs broader controls around its use. No piece of software can live in a vacuum with a ‘set and forget’ function. Developers are part of a larger ecosystem where everyone plays a critical role, and a well-defined process is essential.

While zero-touch version control, as pushed by others in the industry, focuses on reducing the workload on Qlik Sense, we emphasize the importance of structured processes, quality control, and effective communication – as well as great tools for BI app development.

Don’t be sold on the myth of zero-touch, because it will probably come back to bite you in the long run.

Want to find a better way to manage your Qlik app development? We’ve worked with lots of players in BI so we offer advice as well as a brilliant platform for BI dev control – talk to us today.