Enabling faster development through self-service platforms with governance

Saurav Samantray
3 min readApr 15, 2024

Gartner predicts that by 2026, 80% of software engineering organizations will establish platform teams as internal providers of reusable services, components, and tools for application delivery.

A strategic approach to empowering developers to build and deploy applications quickly while ensuring adherence to organisational policies, security standards, and compliance requirements.

Let’s look at some of the MUST have features of a good platform.

Automated Provisioning

Implement self-service platforms or portals where developers can provision resources such as virtual machines, containers, databases, or entire development environments on demand. Automation tools like Terraform, Ansible, or cloud-specific APIs can facilitate this.

Predefined Templates

Offer pre-configured templates or blueprints that developers can use as starting points for their projects. These templates should adhere to organizational standards, including security configurations, network settings, and best practices.

Policy Enforcement

Define and enforce policies to ensure that deployed resources comply with security and compliance requirements. This might involve using tools like AWS Config, Azure Policy, or Google Cloud Security Command Center to continuously monitor and enforce policies.

Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD)

Implement CI/CD pipelines to automate the build, test, and deployment processes. By integrating with version control systems (e.g., Git) and automated testing tools, developers can push code changes with confidence, knowing that the deployment pipeline will ensure quality and consistency.

Security and Compliance as Code

Embed security and compliance checks directly into the deployment pipeline using tools like infrastructure as code (IaC) frameworks or security scanning tools. This ensures that security measures are applied consistently throughout the development lifecycle.

Monitoring and Alerting

Provide developers with visibility into the performance and health of their applications through centralized monitoring and alerting systems. Tools like Prometheus, Grafana, or ELK stack can help developers track metrics, logs, and events relevant to their applications.

Self-Service Documentation and Training

Offer comprehensive documentation and training resources to help developers understand how to leverage self-service platforms effectively. This might include tutorials, guides, API documentation, and interactive learning materials.

Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)

Implement RBAC to control access to resources based on the roles and responsibilities of individual developers. This ensures that only authorized personnel can make changes to critical infrastructure components.

Approval Workflows

Implement approval workflows for resource provisioning requests that fall outside predefined limits or require additional scrutiny. This helps maintain control over resource allocation while allowing developers to request the resources they need without unnecessary delays.

Usage Visibility and Reporting

Provide developers with visibility into their resource usage and spending through real-time dashboards, reports, and analytics. This allows them to monitor their consumption patterns, optimize resource usage, and stay within budgetary constraints.