IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe - July/August 2018 - 27
enabled the bank to explore and
provide input into many IBM
Rabobank is piloting IBM
IGNITE, which uses artificial
intelligence (AI) to accurately
identify, classify and allocate
defects. The bank believes AI can
be used to generate more reliable
The bank has also partnered
with IBM to enhance Rational*
Integration Tester for performance
and stress tests. "The results are
impressive," van Beek notes.
Rabobank is performing 200
million service virtualization calls
each month for load and stress
testing purposes-a volume that
speaks to the tool's scalability.
Thanks to a recent IBM Design
Workshop, Rabobank has
identified a series of Rational
Team Concert Enterprise Edition
and UrbanCode* product
enhancements to get real
DevOps continuous integration
to the mainframe. The idea
is to reduce the number of
home-breed add-ons to the
product and enhance the outof-the-box support for IBM Z.
Similar improvement initiatives
are underway to expand the
InfoSphere* Information Server
and Rational Integration Tester.
Rabobank is gaining many
benefits by automating its
DevOps approach on IBM Z.
Quality issues are identified
much earlier in the process.
Delays due to deployment issues
have been reduced.
The four-part approach to
automation has cut Rabobank's
lead time for an end-to-end test
from a month to an average of
four hours. The bank runs 50
to 60 end-to-end performance
tests each month using a single
Performance tests run at 30
percent of production capacity,
giving the bank a sufficiently
reliable view of how the system
would run in production. "We've
been doing this for 18 months and
it's proven to yield very relevant
test results," van Beek says.
The bank has also gained
the ability to test only those
applications affected by a change.
For example, if there's a new
product that will affect just two
applications out of 12, the bank
can now limit the load and stress
test to those two applications.
This saves Rabobank time, as
the scope of the test is smaller
and there's less time spent in
Success doesn't just happen;
it's planned. Rabobank's
achievements are due to a very
strong vision, a belief in that
vision and steadfast support
from senior management. This
kind of change takes years.
The bank began the process in
2014 and work continues today.
"It's a process of continuous
improvement that has become
part of our way of working,"
van Beek says.
The DevOps initiative at
Rabobank greatly benefited
from the decision to build a new
system, which gave the bank a
new application landscape. The
decision validated the budget
needed to automate processes.
Looking ahead, Rabobank
expects to finish onboarding the
new IBM Z development teams
by the end of this year. The focus
will then move to extending
functionality of the bank's
deployment and test tools. The
bank is moving toward the cloud
and the benefits it will provide.
DevOps is an approach and an
attitude. Rabobank's experience
shows that very complex
operations running on IBM Z can
and will benefit from a DevOps
JULY/AUGUST 2018 // 27