How an industrial engineering leader releases software 3x faster with Xray

Learn how to release software faster with Xray - Native Quality Management
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About the company

The company is an industrial engineering group with customers in over 100 countries served by 50,000 employees. Over the past decades, the company has established itself as a global leader in the industrial and mechanical engineering industry. 

Their portfolio covers commodity solutions for residential and commercial buildings for modern, highly customized solutions for state-of-the-art skyscrapers. In addition, their products also consist of escalators and moving walks, passenger boarding bridges, stair, and platform lifts.

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The challenge

Prior to Xray, the company used Excel sheets to manage their testing, had no automation process and lacked reporting capabilities. They shared Excel files between different time zones and locations which was a big risk, and if someone shared data incorrectly, it would mess up the files. This legacy approach was risky and not easily scalable.  

They worked closely with Demicon, an Atlassian Solution Partner to help them implement a proper test management solution. Hartwig Kosbab, a senior consultant at Demicon says that the idea to choose Xray was simple. 

“The process of deciding to use Xray was not just a specific one, but a global one, where every project can benefit from it. Xray has a really good advantage of having tests as Jira issues which other apps do not have. Plus the Test Repository in Xray made it an easy choice. Many companies first look at Zephyr, but Zephyr is not well integrated into Jira. With Xray, we were able to use Python scripts to automatically transfer the Excel files to Jira issues and therefore to Xray.” 

Use Case

After they made Xray available in the customer’s ecosystem, teams within the company started adapting the tool for their specific needs.

The team that had the most benefits from adopting Xray was involved in the project that develops the software simulator that simulates different real-life scenarios (different building types, traffic types, passenger flows) and measures different KPIs, in order to validate the software in the elevators. 

Each time the latest source code is successfully built-in Bamboo, a new simulation result is generated. This information is then processed with a Python script and transferred into Jira into an Xray project using Jira and Xray’s REST APIs. The project is modeled into test executions for each build, and tests for each specific scenario, which are then linked with the development ticket and the build that generated the result. 

Therefore, transparency in the software development cycle was greatly improved. Developers now see directly in Jira whether KPIs have changed and which ticket or pull request caused the change. This way, they can react faster and avoid performance degradation on the client’s software. 

 

The Solution

Alexandra Holom, a Technical Atlassian Consultant at Demicon helped the customer set up a solution for their needs.

The idea of using Xray implemented was because it’s very flexible and has a good REST API to create all the tickets from Python scripts in Bamboo. Scenarios have specific parameters and with Xray, they are able to execute all of the different scenarios in a single test execution, as well as group them together and display them nicely. The customer also had complex reporting requirements, and since this is not a standard use case they opted to add the EazyBI integration to solve it.”

 

The customer did not consider any other apps since Xray was already implemented in the company. The best advantage is that the tests are Jira issues. Since Xray is fully integrated with Jira, most users from the company were already familiar with the Jira interface, making it a fast and smooth migration.

“The challenging part was breaking the old practices and using a new complete tool. Xray is really easy to work with due to the REST API, and the flexibility.” 
 
Alexandra Holom - Technical Atlassian Consultant  at DEMICON GmbH

 

The migration

All in all, the customer migrated 1500 Excel files with different tests in 3 weeks. They worked closely with Xray support, and all of their questions were answered within hours. Demicon assisted by implementing the migration script and setting up best practices. 

 

The benefits

1. Faster reporting 

With 4 specific releases and a lot of scenarios, it was very hard for the customer's team to check them all manually. Now the reporting is done automatically and easily created. They have set up scripts that automatically generate tickets in Xray and in Jira from Bamboo and with these, the teams can follow up the process.

This information serves primarily shows the developers if something went wrong. Now when the developers change the code they can see if the reported values remain the same and compliant with the project. These results can be seen over time and statistics of the reports built with EazyBI.

 

2. Global teams are connected through Xray

Since the customer is a global company, they have to deal with time zones. Sending Excel sheets through email was a painful experience but now with Xray, all of their test cases are in one place, making information easy to share and communicate in real-time across time zones.

Visibility into all of the testing within Jira saved them time and made them 3x more efficient at releasing software. With this solution, global teams work and collaborate together effortlessly. 

 

3. Improved agility and team collaboration

Switching to Xray improved their testing practice, making testing efforts organized and visible for everyone within the company. The development process is transparent and it’s easier to onboard new employees to the project.

Xray fully integrated the team in the Agile workflow, since everyone works in the same tool, has full visibility of the requirement status, and follows coverage using Kanban boards, scrum boards, and the backlog. Teams are now able to communicate easily with each other, make comments and share the Test cases and Test Runs.

Onboarding new teams is also a breeze if the team members are already familiar with the Jira interface since Xray is so tightly embedded.  

 

4. Faster process for releases

Xray has significantly sped up the process for rolling out releases for new markets and countries and the software in their products now has fixed release dates. The customer works across continents to make a release, starting with Europe, and then rolls-up test scenarios for China. 

By using Xray they were able to minimize a cluster of data in Excel documents. They can now scale the work more transparently and have the flexibility to adjust for someone that may come later in the project. 

“Xray is not hardcoded and we were not forced to use it in a specific way. Xray is a flexible tool that allows you to adapt to any workflow or lifecycle processes the company has and adapt to specific customer needs. Xray has no limitations.” 

Andreas Morgner - Senior Atlassian Technical Consultant at Demicon

 

A native test management solution helps provide mobility for the future 

With customers in over 100+ countries and over 50,000 employees, this leader in the industrial engineering industry keeps the world moving and provides mobility for the future.

With Xray, they've transformed their test management practice into a cohesive and centralized solution that brings global teams together for efficient, high-quality collaboration and impactful projects.   

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