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Roq Increases Speed of Delivery by 90% for UK’s Leading Pet Care Retailer

The Client 

The Client is the UK’s largest pet supplies retailer, with more than 370 stores and 6,000 employees. The company sells products including food, toys, bedding, medication, accessories and pets. The company also works with 405 veterinary surgeons who practice from its stores. 

For each new release of the Client’s POS software, as well as testing new functionality, their test team ran a full regression test over a period of two weeks. This was a time-boxed exercise, meaning that they rarely achieved full test coverage, and their testers were often reassigned to other urgent tasks during regression testing, further reducing test coverage. The test cases themselves were spreadsheet-based and very high-level, which meant that there was no real consistency in testing between each release. As a result of this, bugs were found in production which could have been picked up during esting, leading to a late defect turnaround with high defect resolution costs and potential reputational damage. 

Roq’s Solution  

Roq conducted a review of the client’s existing technical landscape, focusing on the clients four key areas: POS solution, integration platform (MS BizTalk), warehouse management and finance systems. As a priority, the Windows-based POS solution was chosen as the first application to automate. 

A bespoke Java-based test automation framework was developed by Roq using open-source tools including; Cucumber and Winium, which provided a behaviour-driven development (BDD) approach to test case scripting. The existing ambiguous test cases were rewritten by Roq and transformed into user stories and acceptance criteria in the form of Gherkin features and scenarios. 

The framework was then extended to support testing the application at a much lower level. Each test case that included a transaction performed checks against the backend SQL database so that transactions were sent to their JDA WMS & SAP Finance systems through the integration platform (MS BizTalk), which greatly extended the overall test coverage. 

Test execution was controlled through Jenkins CI and distributed over several machines, dependent on the functionality being tested. Test results were then reported back to Jenkins CI and presented to the end user through a central reporting dashboard, which was customised as per the Client’s business requirements.  This included database extracts, screenshots (taken at the point of failure) and detailed exception logs. 

The Outcome  

The Client was able to gain rapid feedback on any changes made on a critical system which the business relies heavily on to function. Roq measures their success by recognising where they have added real business value, and the key benefits to the Client from Roq’s involvement were as follows: 

  • A reduction in regression testing time by over 90% with the resultant cost saving as a result of the introduction of Roq’s automated solution, which reduced the initial two-week to c. 7 hours 

  • By dramatically increasing test coverage and adding consistency to the test process there was a significant reduction in defects entering production – improving end-user satisfaction and reducing the volume of calls to the Client’s Service Desk  

  • The solution eliminated the need for test data maintenance, saving the Client a great deal of time and money. This was achieved by adopting a data-driven approach, whereby data tables contained within feature files (tests) were dynamically populated at build-time with up-to-date test data from the underlying SQL database; and 

  • As part of the implementation, Roq added specific tests to test the customer-facing vacuum fluorescent display (VFD), which had not previously been in scope for manual testing. 

If you would like to discuss how we might be able to help you in a similar context, please get in touch at  


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