Our client hired a world class software vendor that didn’t quite deliver.

Client: Multi-National Insurance Company

Category: Quality, Program Management, Vendor

Our courses

An insurance company had embarked upon the demutualization process and building up new technologies more aligned to the 21st century.  Part of this shift was to consolidate its customer information from across multiple product lines to create a leading edge Operational Customer Information System.

Not having the technical skills in-house, the company hired a world-renowned software company to custom build this customer information system and it was agreed that the software would be delivered in 2 separate releases, aligned with the Test Strategy that ETHITEQUE developed.  In our Test Strategy, we had specified clear entry criteria to the Vendor Acceptance Test phase that the vendor signed off on.

Unfortunately, the client continued to make requirement changes and the vendor continued to accept these change requests, pushing their engineers to work around the clock to meet the first release deadline.  Part of the acceptance process was for ETHITEQUE to evaluate whether or not the vendor had met the entry criteria to the test.  Upon evaluation, we discovered that the vendor had not, in fact, met the entry criteria.  For the first time (but not the last) in our company’s history, we rejected the code and called for an audit.

Built sound test strategy and plan that captured issues long before testing began
Ensured that vendor delivered quality code to our mutual client
Saved our client money

The audit findings proved that the code was not ready for testing and that this world-class vendor had allowed its engineers to “stub” (fake out) parts of the Release 1 code to meet the deadline, hoping to catch up on the coding front and slip in more code as the testing phase continued.

Because the testing group had not been formally notified by the Vendor that the code was stubbed, its test results would not have been accurate, multiple test cycles would need to be added to the timeline, and the test phases would be extended well beyond the target implementation date.

The auditors highlighted that the issue was two-fold:  the insurance company had continuously changed (added to) its requirements and the vendor continued to accept these changes long past a reasonable time limit to accommodate them into their Release 1 code.

The program timelines were re-established and firm milestones were put in place to strengthen the vendor’s ability to deliver sound software. The adjustments between the vendor and our client were negotiated.