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Case Study

Dell

Dell chooses NeoLoad for SAP load testing
40%
less time to design and create scripts
30%
maintenance time savings
image

Dell extends end-to-end load testing across SAP GUI

Streamlining load testing for SAP

As a NeoLoad user for many years, Dell was undeniably familiar with the product. Although the 35-year old information technology mogul has experienced its share of performance testing, its latest NeoLoad engagement – SAP application testing – is likely the greatest Dell performance testing success yet.

According to IDC, the total enterprise storage market revenues have eclipsed $25B. As the largest supplier, Dell accounts for over one-fifth of the total worldwide enterprise storage systems volume.

Ranbir Singh, Management Information Systems Director, describes SAP as the “backbone of the business,” accessed daily by 2,000 sales representatives, and managing the entire ordering flow. 35,000 orders per quarter are supported by the application. Performance is critical. Slow SAP processes or outages due to performance bottlenecks directly impact the business.

To provide customers and employees the best performance and user experience in production, the performance engineering team certifies every release. The group acts as a gatekeeper and has the power to stop any release that does not meet the expected level of performance. To certify SAP releases, the Dell performance engineering team needs to rely on strong expertise and a robust performance testing platform.

NeoLoad helps Dell streamline load testing for SAP, the “backbone of the business.”

Leaving legacy load testing behind

While using NeoLoad to load test the majority of their applications, Dell was also using a legacy load testing tool to test their critical SAP applications. Using multiple performance testing solutions in parallel seemed fine at first. However, as the application’s requirements evolved and it became increasingly important to the company’s bottom-line, the performance engineering team was looking for consistency and performance reliability. The Dell SAP implementation relies on two main nodules: the Java-based SAP Hybris application that was already being tested with NeoLoad and the SAP GA module. To consolidate through a single vendor, Dell also began using NeoLoad to test SAP GUI and validate their SAP GA module in production.

This move was, in part, driven by the looming SAP S/4HANA migration. They knew it would be critical for achieveing the faster, smarter, more agile, and innovative outcomes that the new platform promises.

Adding SAP GUI to their NeoLoad testing scope enables the Dell team to leverage the same velocity and productivity benefits for all their applications. This unique testing platform makes the organization more efficient and contributes to the overall improvement of the Dell performance engineering approach.

Apps under test

SAP Hybris

SAP GUI

The benefits of using NeoLoad for SAP testing

With performance testing standardization on a single platform, Dell can extend their NeoLoad-driven speed and efficiency gains to SAP GUI. After rounds of testing using NeoLoad, Singh and his team recognized the importance and impact of NeoLoad vs. their legacy SAP performance testing solution.

Let’s take a look at some of the elements by which the Dell quality engineering team will be evaluated in terms of speed, agility, and innovation, according to their seasoned director of IT. Currently, SAP testing at Dell represents ten performance tests per release, which amounts to 120 executions per year. The overall gain in efficiency applies to this volume of testing.

  • The overall efficiency of the testing tool:
    While the ramp-up period associated with NeoLoad was flat, the GUI was much easier to use. This resulted in efficiency gains during the early stages of execution.

  • Test design:
    Dell continues to work through load testing scenarios ranging from the simple to the complex. To date, a straightforward project takes upwards of 40% less time to design and create scripts. NeoLoad requires fewer functions than the legacy tool and makes it easier to work with transactions. Overall, NeoLoad helps them design tests faster.

  • Updating / maintaining an SAP test:
    NeoLoad’s maintenance utility was not only significantly easier to manage, but it also saved 30% time and effort compared to the existing established tool (including the User Path update function).
  • Test analysis:
    Analyzing test results with NeoLoad enables Dell to identify performance bottlenecks at the transaction level, providing more in-depth insight compared to the legacy visibility at the user level only. In addition to NeoLoad’s reporting facility, Dell leverages the integration between NeoLoad and Dynatrace to analyze the application under test even deeper.

  • Working in one place:
    Dell really values NeoLoad’s ability to provide all testing features in a single window. Scripting, test runtime, and analyses are done in the same UI, making the entire testing process faster and more efficient.

  • Working with the vendor:
    Singh cites the responsiveness and collaboration of the vendor’s support staff (something rarely experienced with their legacy partner) as a critical differentiator. As a result, he has the confidence that complex scenario execution will soon achieve similar success.

What’s next

Looking back on the experiences, the evaluation, and eventual consolidation through NeoLoad, Singh satisfyingly confirms, “We are much more efficient from an issue identification and reconciliation perspective – a feeling that we’re not accustomed to.” This is, no doubt, a good start for the Dell team as they build on the solid foundation that NeoLoad has helped develop.

The volume of SAP testing currently represents 120 tests per year. With the requirement to integrate Dell and EMC business flows, the scope of SAP will grow and become a major IT project for Dell, including SAP upgrades and new features deployment. The entire SAP architecture will be changed. SAP performance testing requirements will evolve in the same proportion. Dell is confident that the NeoLoad platform will help the team ensure that this vast project is deployed with confidence, providing the best user experience and the highest reliability.

A critical differentiator

Dell’s latest NeoLoad engagement – SAP application testing – is likely its greatest performance testing success yet. Ranbir Singh, Management Information Systems Director, cites the responsiveness and collaboration of the vendor’s support staff as a critical differentiator.