Elabor8 helps client drive continuous performance testing

23 May 2023 Consultancy.com.au 3 min. read
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When a large Australian enterprise wanted to create a single, consolidated view of the flow of its products and services across the organisation, the company tapped Elabor8 for support.

The enterprise client – a retailer of machinery and other DIY items – has a large portfolio supporting over 2 million customers. To achieve its goal of transparency across its portfolio, the Enterprise Architecture function embarked on an transformation of the mobile application, centering around a new application design, a complete re-architecture of the backend platforms, and a reimagining of how data is managed across all systems.

The initiative required a coordinated approach to realise the benefits of the transformation throughout the whole enterprise.

Typical customer journey at the enterprise

The many different portfolio departments operated in isolation, each having their own culture, accountability and processes. This fragmented way of working led to a lack of strategic alignment, resulting in crippling performance bottlenecks being exposed too late in the development process.

Performance testing activities were handled by a separate team operating outside the project’s scope. This exacerbated the performance issues by creating lengthy delays, inconsistent results, and quality concerns.

The team from Elabor8 was engaged to help fix the performance problems through design, implementation and execution of a modern performance testing framework. The consultants worked with the delivery teams to uplift their capabilities, developing a culture of ownership for their performance testing activities.

The process

Engaging with stakeholders from the business, Elabor8 supported the design of customer journeys. By setting target baselines for each journey, and all underlying platforms, metrics for success were determined.

Leaning on Gherkin syntax (Given-When-Then) to describe the performance test parameters, Elabor8 built an automation framework for continuous performance testing against these baselines. This framework enabled the organisation to continuously validate performance, giving delivery teams the capability to drive better customer experiences through continuous improvement.

The framework enabled rapid identification of where bottlenecks were occurring, allowing for issues to be stack ranked to ensure effort was concentrated on the biggest customer impacts.

The results

Following successful roll-out, the joint project team delivered a number of notable improvements:

  • Increased team capabilities – Teams are able to take ownership of their performance testing needs and drive better decision-making based on accurate data.
  • Reduced performance testing cycle from weeks down to days – Issues are identified early in the development process, making them cheaper and easier to address.
  • Test creation reduced by 85% – Simplicity in design and execution enabled creation of new performance tests to be done in an hour, rather than a day.
  • Satisfied customers – by focussing on the customer experience and driving a cultural shift towards team accountability, customer complaints dramatically reduced, and more user activity observed on the platform.

Commenting on the engagement, Elabor8’s project manager said: “We introduced customer journeys into conversations with Enterprise Architecture and business stakeholders, and together we were able to define what success looked like through target baselines for each journey and all underlying platforms.”

“Building an automated framework to continually test against these baselines gave the organisation a vehicle to rapidly validate performance improvements, and drive an even greater customer experience through continuous improvement.”

“This innovative approach gave the business an accurate representation of how long customers were waiting for their platform to respond across their whole experience. Teams could then prioritise on greatest customer impact, leading to a new app that delivered a pleasant customer experience, easing stakeholder concerns.”

“Through visualisations and automation, the business now has an automated performance test framework to measure customer impact, make data-driven calls, and rapidly validate new features and ideas.”