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Do You Need a Test Environment for Your Job Scheduler?

Test Environment for your Job Scheduler

Job schedulers are often implemented with a single operational environment for all scheduled jobs. For organizations using native scheduling tools, this usually occurs because maintaining separate test and production environments in those tools is a lot of work. Why take the time and effort to rebuild every job in production after testing it?

Unfortunately, putting your jobs straight into production comes with several risks, and causes you to lose flexibility and innovative potential.

Reasons to Implement a Job Scheduling Test Environment

Having a test environment is about more than testing the scripts that your jobs are running. You also need the opportunity to test full workflows, dependencies, timing, and error notifications. If you change a job or add a job to a workflow, it’s important to be able to see what might be affected downstream without doing any damage to your production environment.

Separating test from production is also essential for regulatory compliance. Auditors generally require a division of labor between development and operations, so you need to be able to limit and control who has access to your data and who has access to the production environment.

A test environment it makes it easier to carve out test data for specific application or database testing. If you keep your test database up-to-date with your production environment, you’ll always have a clear picture of what each job is doing, how much time it takes, and how any changes could impact that.

Your process for moving objects from one environment to the next should remain the same whether jobs are being executed on premise or in the cloud. With the emergence of DevOps, it is more critical than ever that there is an efficient way to move objects through development, testing, QA, and into production. Luckily, a modern automation solution can make all of your cross-platform DevOps processes quick and easy.

Tips for your Job Scheduling Test Environment

When setting up tests, you can set up empty jobs inside of a workflow to ensure the workflow logic you’ve created is correct. Alternatively, if you need to test logic and timing of a workflow but one of its jobs will not run in the test environment, you can replace it with a test job set up to run for the same amount of time that the real job would.

Make sure you test all the dependencies within a job or within a sequence to check if each job runs in the right order. Ensuring your dependencies and triggers are set up correctly will save you from having to implement work-arounds or make time-consuming changes in production. Checking on the logic of your jobs in a test environment also allows you to test failure recovery procedures on jobs without impacting production databases.

Job Scheduling Innovation and Optimization

Automating your processes without first optimizing your workflows can mean getting stuck with unnecessary or inefficient steps. If you are running a test environment, you can make sure each process is as efficient as possible before moving it into production.

You will never reach your maximum potential productivity without trying new ideas, including risky ones. Without a test environment, your ability to experiment and innovate is hindered. A test environment allows you to try out any new strategy that might help the business without causing damage to the production schedule.

JAMS Job Scheduler and Test Environments

In today’s business world, everything has to move quickly. That means that the job scheduler you use has to make it easy to export and import jobs to production without forcing you to rebuild objects such as calendars, file watches, parameters, and alerts.

The Copy Promotion functionality in JAMS makes it terrifically easy to move your jobs between environments in JAMS – you simply select the jobs, then click “Copy To”. The promotions are also automatically audited and stored in the JAMS Audit Trail, which means you can satisfy your auditors without any manual record-keeping.

If you’re looking for an automation solution that can facilitate a test environment with simple imports and exports and a detailed audit log, try JAMS for free.