Could you imagine being responsible for turning business requirements into “technical magic?” At Zurich Insurance Group, one of the world’s largest insurance companies, the software team does just that.
Solution Architect Gari Gono and his colleague Jason Catlin-Holmes, the Infrastructure & Environment Manager, were tasked with developing and managing a training environment for the company’s core application, which is used by nearly 3,500 employees.
To allow the application to integrate with multiple services like a messaging queue, SAP database, and even external services like Experian, it was built using a microservices architecture approach. While beneficial, this approach required the team to test the APIs that connect the core application to all the add-on services.
“Many third-party APIs are not built for testing,” Catlin-Holmes said. “You might actually damage their service. Making sure the APIs remain up and running is critical to our application.”
To take on the challenge of testing APIs without impacting the performance of the core application, the team turned to ServiceV Pro, a powerful and affordable API sandboxing and mocking tool that enables rapid testing and development.
“By virtualizing integrations using ServiceV Pro to send information back-and-forth automatically and in real time between processes—such as claims and payments—we virtualized the entire API journey,” Solution Architect Gari Gono remarked. “This dramatically reduce[d] the time and resource costs in identifying and fixing issues. Our training environment is now up 99.99% of the time, and if there’s an issue, it’s usually simple to identify and fix.”
Before turning to ServiceV Pro, the team had considered using stubbing, a manual process in which you have to run one test at a time, but decided against it because each test requires a lot of developer effort stubs are difficult to share.
“API service virtualization is like stubbing on steroids,” Caitlin-Holmes said. “ServiceV Pro provides a level of service autonomy, and once the service is developed, it can run on the server without any input from the original developer.”
ServiceV Pro has also significantly reduced the cost for setting up the training environment. Zurich uses SAP as the service oriented architecture (SOA) around finance, and FileNet SOA for content management, the test environment can cost up to $400K for both applications.
“Adding in the other integrations we might require, our test environment costs can run as high as $500K,” says Gono. “But the service virtualization capabilities provided by ServiceV Pro let us do this for a fraction of the cost.”
To find out if ServiceV Pro is right for your team, download a free trial.
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