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Retail – Saved $10M outsourcing SW dev

With Lighthouse, this retailer saved $10M+ while ensuring the quality of the work to be performed.

This retailer was looking for ways to reduce software acquisition costs, improve quality, and lower ongoing maintenance costs. Their software footprint included a large customized Automated Teller machine (ATM) network of 5,000 machines, a new custom Point of Sale (POS) system, a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, and numerous large custom applications.

When the retailer outsourced their multi-million-dollar custom POS project, they looked to Lighthouse for advice. Because of Lighthouse’s in-depth knowledge in sizing and managing large complex software projects, we were able to review the RFP, size the system, accurately estimate the system cost, and establish clear quality expectations of the work to be performed. As a result, Lighthouse helped the retailer negotiate the contract with the software development vendor, saving them over $10M while ensuring clear visibility of the quality of the work at numerous milestones throughout the project.

Lighthouse was then engaged to assess their software organization, make specific recommendations for improvement, and help implement quality, project management, contracting, requirements management, and testing processes from concept development throughout their entire acquisition and system maintenance lifecycle.

Visibility and Control
During this multi-year engagement, we implemented project management, quality assurance (QA) and quality control (QC) practices to ensure better systems that resulted in improved quality and predictability across all software projects. We mentored and taught them how to develop a “good” set of requirements (“good” meaning it meets all or part of the business need, is unambiguous, verifiable, etc.), establish quality metrics, perform gate checks at major milestones, and implement monthly health checks, all providing the visibility needed to implement necessary course corrections to keep their project on track.

 “To get what you expect, you must inspect.”
– Senior Information Systems Manager while practicing what he learned after consulting and training from Lighthouse

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PMIASQIEEESoftware Engineering InstituteInternational Software Testing Qualifications Board