BPER Services is responsible for the development and evolution of the BPER Group’s suite of applications. These provide business, banking, and back-end services and are tested according to an independent testing model that operates remotely from BPER Services’s IT plant. However, this was not always the case. “The strategic objective was to create this independent testing structure, to make it a real center of excellence when up and running so that it could provide support for the improvement of application quality, which underpins the levels of service that the unit must provide,” explains Massimo Genito, Head of Test Management, BPER Services. “There was also a change of role, in terms of how IT has evolved from providing a traditional supporting role for the business to becoming a business enabler on a multichannel basis.”
Furthermore, the Italian supervisor and regulatory authority makes it mandatory for banks to have a formal software quality control structure. This provided additional incentive to establish an independent testing center in Avellino.
“We started with open source products and tools and built the capabilities for the processes, roles and individual activities,” adds Massimo Genito. “However, this open source configuration had a few limitations: the tools were not integrated and they became stressed out as the volumes grew. In particular, in terms of automation, we were physically slow.
The organization was, therefore, exploring ways in which it could automate the functional testing of its application landscape, including mobile applications. BPER Services required a solution that could span the entire software development lifecycle and replace existing open source tools, such as Squash and Sahi.
At the same time, it wanted to provide visibility and control of the execution of single activities belonging to each system’s development life cycle phase.
Micro Focus demonstrated the value of its solutions during a proof of concept that was accurately defined and then delivered on the scope and requirements. The company has now deployed Micro Focus ALM/Quality Center: a unified platform for managing and automating activities, insight, and assets to deliver applications from requirements through development, testing, and readiness for delivery.
It has also implemented Micro Focus Unified Function Testing software to automate functional testing through an intuitive, visual user experience that ties manual testing, automated software testing, and framework-based testing together in one integrated development environment. Micro Focus Sprinter is being used to increase the efficiency of manual software testing activities and capture intelligent defect information for faster resolution by development teams, while Micro Focus Business Process Testing helps to move BPER Services from one-off manual testing and ad-hoc functional automated testing to an architected approach with a library of reusable test components. Finally, Micro Focus Mobile Center provides a single gateway that enables the company to redefine the mobile experience by delivering a predictable and repeatable mechanism for testing, monitoring, and improving mobile apps throughout its lifecycle.
The result is a standardized, collaborative platform that encourages best practice and reduces time to market for new services. Quality Assurance is more easily met and production defects have reduced dramatically. Furthermore, the automation of the test environment has decreased the need for cumbersome manual intervention, making the entire process more efficient.
“ALM/Quality Center gives us testing services for all three software development methods (waterfall, agile, and hybrid) with advantages in terms of speed, and especially with regards to automation,” continues Massimo Genito. “It also gives a very solid and reliable basis to integrate agile design activities starting from requirements and execution, incorporating them into the continuous integration cycle, which would have been much more complex and costly if we had not had access to an advanced tool such as ALM/Quality Center.”
By introducing a level of automation, the new ALM/Quality Center platform has doubled performance, enabling the team to bring new services to the business much more quickly while still complying with the relevant regulations.
“ALM/Quality Center provides significant advantages in terms of the speed of capture of the essential information as well as transposing the tester’s experience using accessory tools,” concludes Massimo Genito.