Vätterhem: “Without Reqtest, we would have missed requirements and been stuck with bugs”

When the real estate company Vätterhem needed to replace its critical business property system, they wanted quality assurance to permeate the entire project. However, halfway through, it became clear that they needed a better QA tool than Excel in order to validate their 200 requirements. With the help of Reqtest, they created a solid process that provided control of the project and became crucial in keeping budget and schedule.

Wanted control from start to finish

Vätterhem is a municipal real estate company in Jönköping, Sweden. The company has a turnover of 800 million and employs about 200 people. Out of these, 180 employees work daily in the company’s property system, the “heart” of the organization. When their previous system reached end of life’, it was time to implement a new. Due to the system’s importance, Vätterhem wanted to ensure that they had control over the project from start to finish. Their previous experiences was that too few resources were allocated internally for IT projects, and that the follow-up was lacking.

– We are good at managing construction projects, but not as good at system implementations. Historically, we have delegated a lot of responsibility to the supplier. Many times, we have started from one end, seen where it led, and then missed following up on the system requirements, says Vätterhem’s CIO, Johan Hageltorn.

Lacked a good overview

When the company started its system project in the spring of 2023, they wanted to work differently. Vätterhem did a thorough preparation where they examined main processes and methods. The work was condensed into 205 requirements, which were entered into Excel. In parallel, a system supplier was procured, and in the autumn of 2023, work began with a dedicated project manager, a project team and 20 people involved in testing the system according to the requirements.

– We quickly realized that the amount of requirements, tests, and testers would make the situation completely unmanageable in Excel. We would lose control. It was also practically impossible to follow up and get an overview of how the work was progressing, Johan explains.

Better overview and easier testing

Maria Holgersson has been the IT project manager for the implementation. She brought in Reqtest when she realized that they needed a tool that supported their new processes and methods. With the help of Reqtest, they took control over their acceptance tests and could verify that the system requirements were met.

– The most important help we’ve received from Reqtest is control of the progress and where we deviated; it really helped us managing the project. Because when we could clearly see the test cases and test runs, it became clearer where we got stuck and where the testers needed to focus to meet the schedule. That way, we have prioritized our time much better in the project, says Maria.

She highlights the EasyTest feature as a key ingredient for Vätterhem’s success in the testing phase. EasyTest is one of Reqtest’s many test features and includes a simplified interface for acceptance testing.

– EasyTest was super easy to teach, we had a brief overview where I showed the testers from the business how to do it, and then they started. It required very little prior knowledge to test, which enabled us to get many participants.

Better collaboration with the supplier

Another goal that Vätterhem had was better collaboration with its system supplier. To create consensus regarding the time schedule, activities, and approach.

– With Reqtest, we have been able to export various data to discuss with the supplier, such as how testing is progressing and which requirements are approved or not. We couldn’t have achieved that in any other way.

Internally, the tool support was a success. It also contributed to the feeling that the project was a joint effort, with strong involvement from the organization.

– Involving so many employees in the UAT in Reqtest has strengthened the entire company. The users were able to learn the new system before the official training and became strong ambassadors for the new system after the tests, says Johan.

Kept to schedule and budget

The implementation of the property system had a tight schedule, just over 6 months, and they managed to finish on time. The budget was also kept with a few additions, and the system changeover happened without affecting the tenants.

– I’m convinced that without Reqtest, we wouldn’t have been able to assure quality in a good way. We would have missed requirements and also been stuck with clear errors and bugs, Johan concludes.

Continued work in maintenance

The property system is now live, and although the implementation phase is over, the work continues. Vätterhem sees great benefits in continuing to use Reqtest for the challenges ahead.

– The goal is to work systematically with regression testing for new releases from the supplier, and then Reqtest will fit well with its test suites. We also plan to handle smaller upcoming improvement projects where requirements and testing occur in the quality assurance tool, Maria Holgersson explains.

Johan is satisfied with the choice of Reqtest, and when asked if he wishes he had done anything differently in the project, he says:

– We should have started using Reqtest earlier. Now we brought in the tool before the testing phase, but it would have been a fantastic tool even for the process of writing requirements. Deciding how to test the requirements early on would have made our requirements specification – and probably the whole project – even sharper, Johan finishes.

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