The Client

The client is a Fortune 500 organisation and one of the largest bank holding companies in the US with over three million customers.

The Challenge

Our client was in the process of rolling out a company-wide Agile transformation project, aimed at bringing best-practice development capability in-house in order to foster innovation, respond quicker to customer expectations and reduce time-to-market.

A majority of consumers engage with their bank most frequently on mobile, making banks’ consumer mobile application a key differentiator in the market, and a crucial target for transformation.

The client’s mobile application development was being outsourced to a third party, which limited their transparency of the software development process and gave them minimal control over their own software releases, making them less agile and responsive.

The company needed to own their ability to enhance the quality and time-to-market for improvements to their mobile offering to best compete.

They wanted to establish a software delivery engine in-house, using best-practice DevOps methods and tools from the outset, in order to regain control and deliver valuable improvements to market quicker and more frequently.

Due to their third party dependency, they had no in-house Continuous Integration/Delivery expertise. With no previous experience, establishing a best practice software delivery pipeline posed a considerable challenge. In addition, there was a further requirement for the creation a fully-automated mobile device testing lab, to test the software efficiently on different devices.

A complicating factor was the need to ensure compliance with US and UK governance and security standards in an industry with extremely high standards.

The client turned to Contino to introduce DevOps tools and processes as well as position their delivery teams for long-term success by giving them the skills and knowledge needed to sustain continuous improvement.

The Solution

Contino assembled a team of five experts who formed the core consulting team and technical leadership, with knowledge across the whole stack and specialisations in Chef, Continuous Integration, Continuous Delivery, mobile development and testing and mobile automation.

Our Contino consultants conducted an assessment of the client’s people, processes and technologies, identifying the challenges and opportunities and mapping out a plan for transformation.

The team decided to approach the project from two angles: firstly, building a best-practice software delivery pipeline and automated mobile device testing lab, and, secondly, training the incumbent delivery teams in the relevant processes and technologies to cement DevOps practices in the long term.

Contino constructed a CI/CD pipeline based on Jenkins for Java iOS and Android web applications running against a Git repository. Infrastructure was configuration managed using a Chef pipeline to quickly provision servers. Another automated pipeline was established through to production for their back-end application and a third pipeline was built for the mobile application on iOS and Android.

Our team built out on-demand environment provisioning capability hosted in Amazon Web Services and automated using Chef to give their development teams much quicker access to infrastructure. 

Contino consultants also worked with the client’s security team to bake their security and governance requirements into the automated testing and configuration management, ensuring that a high-level of compliance was built into the software delivery process itself.

Alongside the delivery pipelines, the Contino team set up a mobile device test lab, which could automatically test software on different mobile devices with different configurations, accelerating the software testing process.   

Throughout this process, our consultants trained the client’s delivery team in best practice configuration management with Chef, mobile automation testing and mobile testing frameworks, providing them with the skills and knowledge to practice DevOps and sustain a culture of continuous improvement.  

The Result

Where previously the bank had no in-house capability for delivering improvements to their own mobile application - making it much harder to rapidly respond to the demands of the marketplace - after working with Contino in-house automated mobile deployments to production took less than 60 minutes.

Once fully trained and upskilled, the delivery team was empowered to serve their own Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery needs by instantly requesting automated software delivery pipelines and having them up and running within minutes.

The time it took to provision servers was reduced from two weeks to one hour, enabling developers to quickly iterate on infrastructure and code designs and significantly reducing potential time-to-market for new releases.

Alongside these improvements, the fully-automated mobile device testing lab was established and the teams upskilled with the expertise to run thousands of tests daily, ensuring that any issues are identified as soon as possible, in keeping with DevOps best practice.

Finally, by baking security and governance concerns into the software delivery pipeline, compliance was guaranteed from the outset and risks were reduced, whilst maintaining high throughput.

From being entirely dependent on a third party, the client gained the in-house skills and tools required to establish control of their mobile app delivery pipeline and became empowered to respond more rapidly and precisely to consumer needs, whilst maintaining compliance with strict financial governance and security standards.

Key technologies: 

Chef, Jenkins, Nexus, Ansible, Calabash, Java, Objective C