Release Coordinator: A Day In The Life

Jul 13, 2014

A Release Coordinator typically is responsible for owning the planning and coordination of all phases and activities involved in the release of a system or system update into the production environment. Their role facilitates release meetings and develops the release recommendation and release deployment plan based on input from multiple stakeholders within various portfolio teams. They normally would identify priorities, conflicts, dependencies, and risks for the release. Perhaps more importantly, the Release Coordinator ensures that plans are in place to mitigate those risks.

A Release Coordinator confirms the release deployment plan is followed and that all release deliverables (usually in the form of Release Activities or entry/exit criterion) have been completed inline with the release dates and deadlines. Typically we would expect to see release notes, approvals, communications, contact lists and pre and post-release verification activities also managed by the Release Coordinator.

Primary Accountabilities

Release Planning (Accounting for some 45% of role)

  • Facilitates release planning meetings with key stakeholders to identify proper sequencing of release packages. Ensures that issues and risks are identified, understood, and dealt with in a manner that mitigates risk to scope and schedule.

  • Defines and documents the release recommendation for each release and/or change to production. Includes release scope, schedule, deliverables, and roll back plan. Reviews release recommendation with key stakeholders.

  • Oversees release decisions and processes in terms of the big picture/cross-departmental impacts.

  • Maintains release management schedule for specific (or assigned) system(s).

  • Documents and communicates all changes for a release in release notes which are published to both the internal team and the client.

  • Attends change management such as CABs and deployment planning meetings to collect data and information pertaining to the release.

Release Management (Accounting for some 40% of role)

  • Pursues IT and Project compliance with release acceptance criteria.

  • Provides outage information and fills out service level agreement blackout request.

  • Coordinates and schedules key change to production activities. This includes the tracking of all elements with team leads as the project moves through testing regions into production. Accommodates a flexible schedule as most releases occur outside of regular business hours.

  • Supports release execution by monitoring of each phase of the release. Validates the release as it progresses thru various release gates and test phases, alerts appropriate stakeholders of any errors or issues that need to be addressed.

  • Provides release coordination and communication during and after deployment.

  • Creates requests for change (RFC to production) and obtains appropriate approvals.

  • Facilitates emergency releases from production incident identification to incident closure after release.

  • Verifies capture of customer acceptance/signoff on deliverables.

Release Standards and Processes (Accounting for some 10% of role)

  • Identifies opportunities to make tactical improvements to the release management process.

  • Maintains documentation of all processes.

  • Creates release management standards to be followed. Educates external vendors on the release methodology and strategy.

  • Collects feedback from the users of release management standards and identifies the need to modify or retire a standard based on the feedback.

  • Integrates the release process with other IT processes including ITSM and Waterfall/Agile processes.

  • Works closely with Change and Configuration Management team of the ITSM Unit to stay current on all change, configuration and internal controls standards and processes.

Test Environment Coordination (Accounting for some 5% of role)

  • Strictly manages timing and coordination of test runs with competing projects and client stakeholders sharing pre-production test environments.

  • Manages overall non-production environment usage, configuration, and scheduling of the different test environments for each release.

To Read about a Release Managers Job Description, click here.

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