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This post is from the XebiaLabs blog and has not been updated since the original publish date.

Last Updated Jun 28, 2017 — DevOps Expert

Real-time, Customizable Release Notifications in v7.0


You receive hundreds of emails daily. What do you do?

  • Ignore them. There are too many to sort through and it’s overwhelming.
  • Delete them or set an “auto-direct” rule in your inbox--and then never go back and check.
  • Skip those "plain-text,” hard-to-comprehend emails and instead concentrate on high priority ones.
  • Watch your spam folder fill up with emails that were not intended for you.
  • All of the above.
What if you could customize and configure the emails you and your team receive, based on events you need to know about? What if you could also customize the subject and body of emails to grab the attention of those who receive them? And what if you could communicate release status through your team’s chat software channels in real time, working in sync with their preferred way to stay in touch?

Great News--With XL Release 7.0, You Can!

XL Release 7.0 delivers flexible new Release Notification features that align with and complement users’ preferred tools and ways of working. Now everyone can see the right information, when they need it, how they need it, in the format that works best for them.

Improve Your Email Signal to Noise Ratio

Only send necessary emails to the right people--don’t spam everyone with possibly irrelevant updates on every activity. With the new Notification Settings screen, you have fine-grained control to send out notifications on task and release events and to specify which recipients should receive notifications. If you don’t want to send out notifications for certain events, you can even remove all recipients, so the event can be “ignored” altogether. The less email you send out, and the more relevant it is, the more people will pay attention.

Task Reminders

Never miss a deadline! XL Release comes with a “due soon” notification that alerts others that an ongoing task is reaching its due date. This feature serves as a gentle reminder that pulls people into the process, helps them be more proactive in completing their tasks, and prevents problems before they occur.

Easy-to-Read, Customizable Emails

Make your messages clearer so people quickly grasp the main points in your notifications. XL Release now lets you customize your email subjects and content and assign a high priority setting. You can now also use rich HTML formatting, along with supporting markdown, for the body of your emails, so the most important parts of your emails will visually stand out. No more getting lost in the weeds of Plain Text formatting!Release Notifications feature: XL Release lets you customize your email subjects and content and assign a high priority setting

New Watchers Feature for Real-time Updates

Keep stakeholders informed about the status of a release or the progress of specific tasks with our new Watchers feature. You can now assign “watchers” who will receive notifications about specified tasks. This feature is especially useful for providing real-time notifications about release progress to those who are not part of the global notification scheme but who would like to be updated about a task, such as management team members.Watchers feature is part of Release Notifications capabilities in XL Release 7.0

Escalation Notifications

Want to notify the release manager along with the task owner when a task is overdue? No problem! With the new escalation notification feature in XL Release, you can specify the recipients who should receive “task overdue” events, so delayed tasks can be automatically escalated to the right people to keep the release moving along. We know events that require escalation--as well as whom to escalate to--will vary greatly by team and organization. Escalation paths are fully customizable, so they can be most effective for your team.

ChatOps Release Updates

Now you can send release and task updates to your team using the channels that work best for them. Meet your team where they live--use XL Release to send notifications in Slack, HipChat and Pager Duty. You can send messages to a particular room, channel, or even a specific user. Your team can get the most important messages in real-time without checking email. We gave one of our customers a preview of XL Release's new Notification features and wanted to share his reaction:
These notification improvements will be tremendously helpful for our team. We want to strategically specify how often, who, and at what points people will be notified during a release, so our teams can work most efficiently. Too much email will be ignored, and too little won’t deliver crucial information. This fine-grained control will help us achieve the right balance.Tom Larrow, DevOps Automation Engineer at Key Bank
We look forward to hearing how these new notifications features help enhance your team’s productivity too! Check out XL Release 7.0 and leave us a comment…

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