Stellar helps Toyota automatically test updates to its BI system using Continuous Integration
Stellar and Toyota New Zealand have collaborated for more than five years to build, maintain and upgrade Toyota’s enterprise data warehouse.
As the solution grew in size and complexity, changes to the system became harder to test, and risked putting an increased burden on the development team and business users. Also, with a mix of large and small projects all using the same data warehouse, there was an administrative overhead to maintain multiple streams of work. “Often you are using the same resource to get these projects built and tested,” says Michael Shepherd, responsible for Business Intelligence at Toyota.
“We’ve had timing issues, where we’ve been unable to meet deadlines with a project because we had to wait for something else to be tested first. Likewise there might be pressure to refresh the data, but we can’t until the business finish testing.” Michael Shepherd, Toyota.
Integration and Testing is the phase of the software development life cycle (SDLC) where the code for a new feature or fix is merged into the solution and tested, ready for deployment to production. If the new feature has taken weeks or even months to develop, with lots of changes to the code, then testing can be a long and difficult exercise. There can be clashes between the various changes, and bugs can be introduced (or old bugs re-emerge). Comprehensive testing is required to make sure the new code works, and the existing code still works as expected.
”We want to try and take this as a best practice for other areas of our business running on a variety of core systems. If we can be more efficient and quicker at getting enhancements deployed without errors, it will be a massive step forward, and enable us to focus on new projects rather than fixing the things we thought were fixed.”
Michael Shepherd, Toyota.