Tietoevry Banking Essentials delivers scalable and modular Banking as a Service solutions and leading software that supports some of the world’s largest financial institutions. Its core banking platform (first launched in 1981) provides the foundation for millions of transactions, amounting to billions of dollars in transfers between people, platforms and institutions every day.
As the financial services industry and international banking landscape evolved, the core banking platform evolved alongside them. But over time, following numerous revisions and enhancements, the platform had become costly and complex to maintain. The Tietoevry team decided that it was time for a significant transformation, and devised the Next Generation (NX) Core project — a major modernization and development initiative that would ensure a robust, sustainable and flexible future for the solution.
As the team scoped and began executing the early stages of the project, it became clear that, to successfully complete a modernization of this scale, they would require more than just new technology and code. The organization also had to evolve how its core banking development teams and stakeholders worked. That’s when Tietoevry first engaged with Thoughtworks.
In close collaboration, Tietoevry Banking and Thoughtworks established a delivery approach for the core renewal project, adopting a mix of agile and DevOps practices. Together, we transformed an in-flight project of over 200 people across three countries and four time zones, organizing team structures and management practices to align with agile principles. On the technical front, we also supported the re-factoring of the solution architecture, while implementing continuous delivery with automated testing.
The adoption of those practices led to some big changes for the Tietoevry team. They quickly evolved from following a strict waterfall methodology to operating as a truly agile organization. Non-value-adding tasks were eliminated, teams were restructured in line with modern development best practices and the organization embraced continuous delivery, helping teams push smaller deployments into production frequently.
Across the core renewal project, Thoughtworks appreciated and addressed the complexity of a modernization project of this scale — simultaneously paying attention to the fine details and helping us implement our big ideas.
In just over two years, the changes, new processes and new workflows adopted by the team drove significant improvements across the four industry-defined key metrics, taking the project a long way toward being a ‘high performer’. Lead time to deploy fell from 60 days to just five. Mean time to restore was cut from weeks, or even months, to just 16 hours. And deployment frequency grew from one huge production deployment in eight years, to more than 100 successful deployments in just two years.
But perhaps the biggest improvement of all has been in how Tietoevry Banking Essentials’ teams work day-to-day. Today, the project’s teams are structured to maximize collaboration, with leaders focused on helping everyone deliver their best, rather than on coordinating disparate groups. New ‘task forces’ work across teams and competency areas, breaking down the barriers between development, testing and implementation. And the bottlenecks that held delivery up previously have been removed.
Greater responsibility and closer collaboration between the tech teams has led us to develop better solutions. When we saw the value and improvements of the agile practices that Thoughtworks implemented, the change had a positive effect on the whole organization.
Together, Tietoevry and Thoughtworks haven’t just accelerated the successful delivery of its NX Core platform, we’ve built a culture that will help both the platform and the team behind it deliver maximum value for decades to come.
Thoughtworks brought an intimate knowledge of how a good, agile software development project should be operated, and were able to use their knowledge to guide and help transform the core renewal project. They did this with constant enthusiasm and energy and were a very positive force for the project.