To support its recent growth, Softplan needed one software development platform that supported the entire development process, helped remote workers collaborate, and reduced costs and time to market.
Working with IBM Business Partner OneForce, Softplan implemented IBM® Rational® Team Concert™ software along with the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) methodology.
50% decreasein time to market because of increased efficiency
35% reductionin software defects because software is validated throughout the development lifecycle
50% less timebetween product validation and the beginning of operations
Business challenge story
Supporting massive growth
Between 2010 and 2012, the Softplan Unit of Justice (UNJ), which specializes in developing management software for the Courts of Justice, Procuracy and Public Prosecutor’s Offices in Brazil, almost doubled in size. The company had 300 developers who worked in 12 systems, used two programming languages and were located in multiple cities. “At that moment, we had different management tools that didn’t give us a clear vision of the whole development process. Each one of those tools was implemented to meet different internal, external and client demands. They were fragmented and, to manage the diversity of solutions, we had high costs,” says Luis Fernando Fausto, Chief Operating Officer at Softplan.
To support its recent growth and reduce time to market, the company needed one software development platform that would support the entire software development process and provide traceability throughout the product lifecycle. Softplan began investigating solutions that would help it track the software development process from the time it received a customer request, to the analysis process, implementation and testing phases, and then to delivery and final validation. The company also wanted to better integrate its employees, creating a more collaborative environment to help increase operating efficiency and product quality.
Uniting disparate teams
Softplan chose IBM® Rational® Team Concert™ software because it could support the entire software development process and integrate with the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) methodology, which the company had recently adopted. “In parallel to looking for a software development platform, we were studying a new agile framework, and we chose to implement SAFe. SAFe supports synchronization of the software development process across different teams, and we knew we needed a tool to support it. We found that Rational Team Concert could easily integrate with SAFe,” explains Anderson Soffa, Technology Manager at Softplan.
IBM Business Partner OneForce helped Softplan model and begin implementing the Rational Team Concert software in January 2015. It took approximately three months, and the OneForce team used agile methods during the implementation. OneForce led the Softplan team through gathering requirements, modeling, conducting pilot experiments, collecting feedback and training the team.
Today, Softplan has a software development environment that supports 250 people in 16 teams working simultaneously. Besides having much greater visibility into the development process, employees can collaborate more effectively and stay more informed of status updates and changes. Employees know the current development status and what they need to do to achieve the team’s goal. The solution helps teams meet their deadlines and communicate more efficiently and effectively.
The Rational Team Concert software also provides the flexibility Softplan needs to keep up with changing requirements. “When we first got SAFe, we got version 2.0. Since then, we have updated to version 4.0. Rational Team Concert is very flexible and allows us to accommodate these types of changes in a quick and easy way,” says Júlio César Fausto, Agile Coach at Softplan. “In addition to updates to the version of SAFe, we need other changes on a regular basis, such as new reports or different ways to evaluate the agile team. We can get whatever we need by updating the tool. Everything can be customized.”
Achieving real results
After implementing Rational Team Concert software, Softplan achieved numerous benefits, including reduced costs, improved productivity and decreased software defects. “We increased our delivery capacity by 40 percent,” says Luis Fernando Fausto. “We also reduced the number of bugs by 35 percent because now software quality is verified constantly during the entire lifecycle. In the past, it was only verified at the end.”
In addition, time to market dropped by 50 percent and, explains Soffa, “We have also cut the time between the product validation and the beginning of operations in half. This huge reduction is because we have eliminated so many software defects.”
All of these changes significantly affected Softplan’s employees. “We find that our professionals are more satisfied with their work,” says Luis Fernando Fausto. “Before Rational Team Concert and SAFe, they had to deal with homemade tools with no integration among them.” Now that they have the new solution, productivity and collaboration have increased. “Adopting the new solution required a huge cultural change, and everybody embraced it,” says Luis Fernando Fausto. “And the change doesn’t only affect our team and our customers. The whole population depends on judiciary services. So the faster we deliver new technologies, the greater the benefits to the Brazilian people.”
Founded in 1990, Softplan is a software development company that specializes in management systems. It develops enterprise solutions for the construction industry, public administration, projects cofinanced by international agencies, transportation infrastructures and judiciary services. Based in Florianópolis, Brazil, the business has a presence throughout Latin America and the US and employs approximately 1,500 people.
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