boo.com was known as the largest designer sports and leisure-wear e-commerce business online. By May 1999, boo.com had received close to £75 million worth of investment to establish itself as a pioneering global brand (the record highest valued Europe internet start-up). boo.com successfully delivered an e-commerce site in seven languages that offered 3D views of products, free delivery to the US and Europe, and a lifestyle e-magazine.
boo.com asked thequality.com to manage corporate-wide testing during the initial technical development stages. The scope of testing included the web site, the back-end e-commerce system, financial systems, supply chain management, and customer service systems. Due to boo's high profile there was tremendous pressure to launch the web site on time despite many design and business strategy issues. The brief to thequality.com was to provide creative/technical insight at senior management level and manage internal communication and testing requirements across several time zones in preparation for the launch.
A company-wide consultation process was initiated to prioritise critical requirements. thequality.com immediately identified the fact that a new intranet solution was required prior to site launch in order to manage internal communication and facilitate testing. thequality.com developed a prototype web-based testing application and introduced an intranet-based test methodology across the company, evangelising the practical potential of new media.
A small team of rapid development specialists were assembled to develop and maintain a suite of data entry and management information applications. thequality.com managed development activities, liasing with boo.com staff, helping departments to define their internal communication requirements, specify development requests, and train staff in the use of any web applications produced.
Other companies working on boo.com such as Oracle, Viant, Organic, Interworld, and Cap Gemini were briefed and co-ordinated by thequality.com.
A suite of testing applications, coined bootrack, was built on top of an Oracle database. These were developed under thequality.com's guidance to supply critical functionality that had not been catered for in the original system design.
The information collected in bootrack included:
· bug ticketing
· general issue tracking
· customer order and returns tracking
· test case documentation
· customer relationship management (CRM)
· CRM process documentation
· technical support ticketing
· marketing survey data
thequality.com used Macromedia Flash as a tool for process documentation. This enabled detailed organisational charts and process flow maps to be navigated in an easy to use interface, clicking through to real-time information in the database.
the end result
boo.com opened for business in November 1999. The intranet systems and processes delivered by thequality.com was used by over 400 staff in 7 offices world-wide to track issues and provide visibility to management.
|DISCLAIMER: this case study does not relate to the current boo.com (v 2.0) business which acquired the brand in late 2000.|
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