The Silicon Review
“Many of the largest global brands use our automation to accelerate innovation and ensure continuous quality and delivery across SAP landscapes.”
A growing number of enterprise IT organizations are embracing DevOps practices like increased collaboration, continuous delivery and automation. IDC predicts DevOps will continue to mature so quickly that by 2019, more than 60 percent of new apps will use “cloud-enabled continuous delivery and cloud-native application architectures to enable faster innovation and business agility.” So it’s no surprise that the ecosystem of software vendors offering tools to facilitate this new way of working continues to expand.
Basis Technologies has developed a range of DevOps solutions, with the common factor that they are all specifically engineered for use with SAP software (SAP is the world’s largest provider of Enterprise Application Software, counting 92% of the Forbes Global 2000 as clients). Basis Technologies’ automated DevOps and testing platform consists of two core products, ActiveControl - technology that gives companies the flexibility to deliver high quality change on demand, without risk of business disruption – and Testimony - the first Robotic Test Automation (RTA) solution for on-demand regression testing, without scripting or test maintenance. Other products that support faster software delivery and business transformation include SnapOps, Z Accelerators and Consolidator.
Martin Metcalf, Basis Technologies CEO, spoke exclusively to The Silicon Review. Below is an excerpt.
Why was the company set up? And how did you expand your company and its offerings over the years?
Basis Technologies was originally established in Melbourne, Australia, in 1997 and has been headquartered in London, UK, since 2003.
Automation has been in the company’s DNA since day one. One of our earliest products, Transport Express, was designed to massively reduce the cost and risk of delivering change into SAP systems by employing automation to make the process faster, safer and more transparent.
Since then, the product line-up has been expanded to support modern software development methodologies and the digital transformation of business. Basis Technologies now offers the only complete, automated DevOps and testing platform engineered specifically for SAP systems.
Transport Express still lies at the heart of the platform, albeit in a massively enhanced form known today as ActiveControl. It sits alongside our unique testing solution, Testimony, which employs a transformative new approach called Robotic Test Automation to fully automate the process of SAP regression testing.
How do you maintain your customers’ trust and loyalty?
Our automated DevOps and testing platform allows our customers to compete more effectively, shifting more quickly to market demands and delivering innovation with confidence as soon as it’s ready.
That translates into a range of tangible business benefits. For example, customers have been able to reduce the cost of SAP change by more than half, automate 95 percent of manual tasks, and deliver innovation 50x faster than with manual methods.
A key shift enabled by our products is the ability to align and integrate SAP delivery with other IT systems so that change can be delivered to the business more quickly. One major telecom provider we work with now automatically delivers multiple fully-integrated deployments each day across 15 IT systems, including SAP, equating to thousands of SAP changes across a two-week period. This is just one example where we have changed the way customers run their SAP systems.
In addition, DevOps automation can provide numerous less tangible benefits such as greater cross-team collaboration and cross-pollination of ideas, and an increase in team morale as individuals gain the space to work on more interesting, value-add tasks.
“Basis Technologies has demonstrated their deep technical understanding of SAP time and time again. They continue to deliver innovative products that support our business needs.” — Ed Alford, VP Business Application Services, BP
What are the factors that make your company stand out from the competition?
Naturally, we consider Basis Technologies to be among the best companies in many ways, but a few stand-out factors spring immediately to mind.
Uniqueness: Simply put, we provide the only complete, automated DevOps and testing platform engineered specifically for SAP systems.
Innovation: We’re constantly delivering new features and regularly introduce new products but more than that, our technology drives new ways of working in SAP through things like DevOps and Robotic Test Automation.
Technical expertise: We have a team of technical experts that are highly skilled and extremely experienced. That means we not only have the means to deliver innovation but also that we have the background to understand customer pain points within extremely complex SAP landscapes and workflows.
Customer value: Our products are easy to set up and deliver tangible value almost immediately. This is a huge benefit in any field, but stands out especially in the world of SAP where solutions are difficult to configure, cumbersome to use and slow to deliver value. What’s more, they allow our customers to work in ways that simply would not otherwise be possible.
Customer satisfaction: Our consistent 96 percent renewal rate really does speak for itself, but it’s a testament to the effort we dedicate to relationships and support as well as the development of products and technical features.
How do you and your company contribute to the competitive global IT platform at large?
Fundamentally, we are transforming the way our customers can run their SAP systems in an ever-more competitive business landscape.
By enabling DevOps application delivery processes in SAP, we bring much-needed agility to SAP systems. That allows our customers to maintain better competitive agility and respond more quickly to market opportunities while reducing costs and lowering risk.
For those reasons, many of the largest global brands use our automation to accelerate innovation and ensure continuous quality and delivery across SAP landscapes. “M&S treats Basis Technologies as a trusted strategic partner who provides an incredibly innovative tool set that has helped us to get the best from our SAP estate.” – Stephen Davidson, SAP Platform Manager, Marks & Spencer
What does the future hold for Basis Technologies?
The recent launch of Testimony was hugely significant as we not only introduced our first testing product but also because it’s a game-changing new approach – Robotic Test Automation – that solves the challenges of traditional testing methods, thereby accelerating innovation and avoiding business disruption.
We have a lot in the works right now. One exciting area is the extension of our DevOps delivery platform to automate and orchestrate SAP environments. We are collaborating with world leaders in cloud infrastructure management to build the most effective end-to-end DevOps for SAP cloud delivery solutions. The goal is to give complete autonomy to SAP application teams as they strive to support the greater demands on IT departments with on-demand systems for application development and testing . That’s just one area in which we are innovating. We also continue to develop both ActiveControl and Testimony so that they provide even more value to our customers.
“Testimony really is revolutionary. The results immediately challenged what we thought we knew about the impact of change in our systems. It has fundamentally altered the way we think about testing SAP software.” – Gavin Thornton, IT Senior Application SME – SAP, CBH Group
Martin Metcalf: A Brief Background
With over 30 years of experience in the IT market, Martin Metcalf was chosen to lead and build Basis Technologies into a world-class software business and establish global market leadership in automated DevOps and testing platforms, engineered for SAP.
Prior to Basis, Mr. Metcalf held a variety of senior leadership positions including at UK AIM-listed software businesses and within SAP, where he held the position of Regional Managing Director for the UK, Nordics and Africa.