How IHG’s test management transformation opened the door to continuous test automation

Company overview

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) doesn’t fear change; they lead it. Recognizing that meeting travelers’ rapidly-changing expectations required the application development speed of a startup, the company prioritized digital transformation and shifted to Agile development. This was a massive shift involving 23,000 people in the global tech organization and 100+ delivery teams. The atmosphere was already charged with change, and their quality leaders knew it was time for more. They realized this was an opportunity to fundamentally rethink and re-envision their quality process to ensure that exceptional quality could be delivered as fast and cost-effectively as possible.

After exploring both developer and tester concerns with the existing process, the quality leaders developed a clear and compelling vision for a new quality approach—one that involved shifting from a Testing Center of Excellence to a Global Quality Engineering organization. Testers were embedded in the development teams, and the Quality Engineering group took the lead on defining quality practices and best-in-class standards to keep up with the company’s ever-changing app landscape. However, the company’s existing HP / Micro Focus QC toolset was a barrier to making this new vision a reality.



  • The global IT organization adopted Rally for requirements and defect management, but this system was not suitable for test case management
  • Since QC lacked integration into Rally (which the organization had just standardized on), they could not achieve requirements traceability
  • QC’s aged architecture didn’t support their globally-distributed Agile teams
  • QC tests were difficult to find and reuse; it was easier for testers to create a new test than find what they needed
  • Pressure to sunset QC before they were billed for another year of costly maintenance
  • 90% of the organization had transitioned from waterfall to 2-week Agile sprints—requiring testing to speed up significantly
  • QA had only days or hours to test each release; there was no time for test automation, and the team lacked the skills and tools for test automation
  • Testers were embedded in globally-distributed Agile teams and needed modern test management tools that facilitated planning and collaboration in their new way of working
  • Needed a test management tool that would integrate with multiple automation tools across the landscape


IHG determined that Tricentis qTest, which runs on AWS, was the ideal test management tool for the quality transformation they envisioned. Since it was tool- and technology-neutral, they were confident it would support their ongoing process optimization and modernization initiatives—now and in the future.

qTest is currently the central repository for all test management activities throughout the enterprise, including end-to-end tests, functional tests, regression tests, smoke tests, system integration tests, user acceptance tests, business process tests, exploratory tests, and all associated metrics. It provides the entire organization a “single source of truth” for quality—from the team level up to the line of business. It is integrated with many industry-leading Agile, automation, and pipeline tools to give IHG an enterprise view into all things testing. This enables different stakeholders to get fast, role-based access into what quality activities are planned, how they are progressing, and what defects are being discovered. With this insight, they have been able to identify issues much earlier, then address them when it’s significantly easier, faster, and less expensive to do so. Further increasing their efficiency, they’re now building out tests as reusable modules that can be mixed and matched to create sophisticated end-to-end tests.

“We’ve had testers move from traditional testing models into a continuous testing model—shifting left, ensuring that we focus on speed by getting the right feedback to the stakeholders at the right time, focusing on quality by improving our test coverage, and focusing on cost by increasing our productivity and efficiency.”

Tammie Davis, Director Global Quality Engineering at InterContinental Hotels Group

With all these efficiency gains, IHG’s teams can now complete rigorous testing within highly-compressed Agile cycles. They also found the time needed to achieve their ultimate quality goal: ramp up test automation in response to their next major change: DevOps adoption. They are currently using Tricentis Tosca to automate end-to-end tests across Salesforce, SOAP and REST APIs, Oracle forms applications, and Oracle and Teradata DB verifications. Next, they plan to optimize and scale practices such as test data management and service virtualization.
At IHG, innovation never sleeps.


  • Arrow IconIHG is one of the world’s leading hotel companies with nearly 6000 hotels globally

“We wanted to make sure that we thought boldly and innovatively. We really challenged our past ways of working to drive efficiency and faster growth”

Tammie Davis, Director Global Quality Engineering at InterContinental Hotels Group



  • Estimated 30% productivity improvement for testers through greater efficiency
  • Estimated 30% test automation increase
  • 50% reduction in effort spent on non-test execution tasks, equating to 25% cost savings
  • Enterprise testing optimization with standardized templates, repositories, and sharing
  • Created full software lifecycle traceability via seamless integration between Rally and qTest
  • Provided comprehensive, flexible access to quality metrics and test results — from sprint level views for team leads to quarterly release views for leadership
  • Risk-based testing provides increased confidence in releases
  • Stakeholders can easily review and comment on results
  • Testers and developers collaborate in real-time within their familiar working environments
  • Testers can log defects directly to Rally
  • Business users can record manual exploratory testing efforts, enabling transparency and future reuse
  • Continuous testing and quality gates are embedded throughout the CI/CD pipeline