When a client decides to move from a monolith platform to microservice architecture, there’s both risk and reward. Microservices offer a range of possible benefits to our clients, but teams who have traditionally developed in monolith architecture may find the shift difficult—often knowing that there may be gaps in their approach, but not being entirely sure where those gaps are.
WillowTree supports our clients through the process of moving from monolith to microservices in a variety of ways — from fully designing and developing technical architecture to consulting on best practices that set a team up for growth and success.
Like any solution, microservices is not a silver bullet, so it’s important to look at your specific team, application, and business model in order to determine if implementing microservices is the right path.
Our clients often come to us in the process of implementing microservices, sometimes with code already in production. For teams experienced in monolith architecture, developing in microservices requires a drastic shift of mindset and a willingness to adapt to suit the new system.
In other words, teams may have growing pains in the short term that yield benefits in the long term.
One striking way in which we’ve supported teams as they learned to manage the increased operational complexity of microservices is through both manual and automated testing. In partnership with one of our eCommerce clients, we’ve helped their QA team build an exhaustive list of end-to-end test scenarios, and transition testing from manual to automated.
Robust testing plans are crucial to the success of microservices. As microservices provide frequently deployed independent services by different teams, interactions must be documented and verified via automated testing. At WillowTree, our Test Engineers work closely with the team who owns testing to develop testing plans and decide what kinds of tests to use whenever code is being designed or changed.
Automated end to end testing is an automation of manual “click-through” tests. While manual testing is incredibly useful for promoting learning during discovery and investigation of the system, repeatedly executed tests should be automated whenever possible to maximize efficiency.
Teams will want to define contracts for their microservices that communicate agreements for what interactions and data will be exchanged with other services. Contract testing provides a means to allow these contracts to be tested to ensure that when changes are made that the contracts are upheld.
Integration/service tests can be one of the most useful, important types of tests a team creates. Although these tests take many forms, test harnesses may offer particular value by affording engineers a customized API that allows them to write succinct, deduplicated, and easy to read tests against a single microservice.
Unit testing can help drive the design of each function and data structure as well as verify logic at a very granular level.
When approached properly and with expertise, microservices offer clients the invaluable opportunity to modernize and scale to meet the demands of business. Implemented properly, microservices can:
Let WillowTree help your team upgrade its operating system
Building a microservices based architecture is a team sport, and we’d much rather build with your team than for your team. Why?
Building microservices requires growth and change for a team—something much easier when you have a trusted expert able to offer feedback, coaching, and support. Our teams at WillowTree are built for these challenges and we’re equipped with people who understand how software teams learn, build, and grow. Get in touch today to take next steps!