Using your pipeline to enforce corporate rules

I just took part in a discussion about Continuous Delivery fundamentals at a conference. During the conversation different questions came up about security and compliance, with reactions varied from “well of course you have to do that” to anecdotes about shadow IT where corporate polices are ignored.

It wouldn’t have been appropriate for me to point this out in the conversation, but this is one area where the differences between a CI tool and a CD tool really stand out.

I talked about the ability to run things like security pipelines in parallel with other pipelines in a blog from a couple years ago ( ) but I may not have pointed out of one the most powerful options…

The folks responsible for designing and maintaining the security and compliance checks don’t have to be on the product team.

This diagram represents a single pipeline fanning out into two pipelines and then back into one. It’s important to note that these are not just parallel jobs, but entirely different pipelines.

It’s possible in GoCD to have the security / compliance pipeline be under the care of a dedicated team. As much as I’m a fan of cross functional teams, it’s not always reasonable to have all the knowledge you need on a product team. It’s also possible that you would want the work verified by another team for other reasons.

It’s this possibility of parallel pipelines that came to my mind first when I read the new “trust teams but verify” theme for the latest ThoughtWorks Radar. I think it’s a great way to make sure you’re following all the corporate rules (which are there for a good reason) without slowing down your development.

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