US Foods is the 2nd largest food distribution company with over 250,000 customers. It’s customer base consists of restaurants and institutional cafeterias ranging in size from fortune 500 corporations to small “mom and pop” restaurants. Key to developing this market-share is an advanced e-commerce platform that allows customers of all sizes to place orders for food delivery and view the pricing for its entire catalog of over 350,000 items. The ability to leverage this platform was one of the key reasons Sysco chose to acquire them. A merger will be complete in late 2014.
US Foods made the strategic decision to convert to an Agile development model with an eye toward increasing efficiencies. This conversion was going to be faced with significant challenges as US Foods has over 25,000 employees and a large consulting base in over 60 locations worldwide. The e-commerce platform alone had large development organizations in Chicago and Dallas as well as a large offshore team in India. It became clear that implementing an extensive ALM tools platform was going to be necessary to allow all of these diverse teams to work together.
Maven Wave implemented a suite of ALM tools with robust cross-tool integration. We partnered with US Foods staff in a phased rollout of the various products. We utilized Maven Wave’s Agile process to allow for extensive contributions from the customer and to give them visibility into the value that was being added to their development process. The major milestones of the product rollout consisted of:
- Converting the software release process from a manual process involving emailing software artifacts from developer workstations to a robust continuous integration process that not only built the code, but provided for automated testing, environment deployment, and code quality checks.
- Implementing a code review application and process that allowed for greater visibility into software changes before they went into a QA or production environment.
- Implementing an artifact repository which centrally managed and version controlled all build artifacts and their dependent libraries.
- Extending the overall solution to several applications on the enterprise including the main e-commerce platform, the mobile e-commerce applications for Android and IPhone, and several internal applications across a variety of platforms.
- Software deployments were cut from 4+ hours to 5 minutes
- Bugs found in QA were reduced by 30-40%
- Eliminated QA idle time due to broken builds amounting to saving 32+ hours of time per QA staff member for each broken build
- Code quality metrics gave greater visibility to the overall development process to US Foods management