McKesson Shows Bringing Testing Tools on the Road Improves Speed to Market and Customer Satisfaction

Updated: June 16, 2010

Eaton: It's one thing that we can test within McKesson. It's another thing when you test out at the customer site, and that's a main driver of this new innovation that we're partnering up with HP.

When we build an application and sell that to our customers, they can take that application, bring it into their own ecosystem, into their own data center and install it onto their own hardware.

Controlled testing

The testing that we do in our labs is a little more controlled. We have access to HP and other vendors with their state-of-the-art equipment. We come up with our own set of standards, but when they go out to the site and get put in to those hospitals, we want to ensure that our applications act at the same speed and same performance at their site that we experience in our controlled environment.

We want to make sure that our solutions get out there as fast as possible, so that we can help those providers and those healthcare entities in giving the best patient care that they can. So, being able to test on their equipment is very important for us.

Just knowing how many different healthcare providers there are out there, you could imagine all the different hardware platforms, different infrastructures, and the needs or infrastructure items that they may have in their data centers.

After further investigation, it became apparent to us that we weren't able to replicate all those different environments in our data center. It's just too big of a task.

The next logical thing to do was to take the testing capabilities that we had and bring it all out on the road. We have these different services teams that go out to install software. We could go along with them and bring the powerful tools that we use with HP into those data centers and do the exact same testing that we did, and make sure that our applications were running as expected on their environments.

Another very important thing is using their data. The hospitals themselves will have copies of their production data sets that they keep control of. There are strict regulations. That kind of data cannot leave their premises. Being able to test using the large amount of data or the large volume of data that they will have onsite is very crucial to testing our applications.

The tool that we use primarily within McKesson is Performance Center, and Performance Center is an enterprise-based application. It's usually kept where we have multiple controllers, and we have multiple groups using those, but it resides within our network.
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