Worksoft expands in Canada to attract SAP users

Dallas, Tx.-based Worksoft, a testing solution provider for SAP applications, has announced its launching operations in Canada in order to better serve and expand on its local customer base.

Worksoft is best known for Worksoft Certify, whose chief selling point is that it automates and allows optimization testing for the deployment of SAP applications. The product can be adapted to each client’s configuration to provide validation for a company’s business processes.

“The timing was ideal because the traction we’re seeing right now from the customer base in Canada is ever-growing,” David Milette, Canadian general manager at Worksoft, said. “It was just becoming a challenge to cover everything out of the U.S. We wanted better support for our customer base in Canada and better capacity to expand that market share and grow.”

Milette said the Worksoft’s testing technology has already been well received by Canadian companies like Bell Canada, which is using the solution to functional test and validate its SAP applications.

As opposed to a code-based automation system, Certify stores the data so that it can be easily analyzed and interpreted without the need for strong technical skills.

“The only folks that understand what should happen when you go down a specific flow are the functional users or the business analysts,” Brian Anderson, director of product management at Worksoft, said. “And those are the exact guys that aren’t comfortable writing loops and different constructs within test scripts. So, the use of objects without any lines of code being generated means you can simply drag and drop what you want to test onto a palette.”

Milette, who served as Canadian presales manager at HP prior to joining Worksoft, said the different approach to testing and automation was the determining factor in his move.

“If automated testing was easy, everybody would be doing it right now and getting tremendous success, but the reality is that the market is maybe 10 to 15 per cent that are doing automated testing versus 80 to 85 per cent doing it manually,” Milette said. “The reason for that is the traditional approach to automated testing which has been based on code and scripting. Worksoft’s approach basically eliminates all need for creating custom scripts, code, loops and all that is compelling to customers.”

Warren Shiau, senior IT analyst at the Strategic Counsel, said Worksoft’s move to Canada could be a really good opportunity for the company in an important and growing market. He said the biggest issue enterprises face when deploying new applications is making sure they run smoothly, so a product which tests these business processes meets a strong need.

“This is where you’ll find market development – companies specifically targeting specific application suites to provide a higher level of functionality,” Shiau said. “So, a company like Worksoft is demonstrating that sort of market evolution.”

Shiau said that the Canadian market is open enough, and maybe even better suited, for smaller companies to compete with the likes of HP-Mercury in this space because enterprises are concerned with very specific functionality issues.

“With enterprises, it’s the issue of making sure things go into production smoothly,” Shiau said. “So, the functionality is specific enough that if an enterprise goes to evaluate a product they do it on a point-by-point basis. Worksoft’s product is one that would be useful to them because it has a very specific test functionality.”

IDS Scheer Canada, a BPM software provider, differs from Worksoft as it is involved with process design and optimization at the early stages of ERP development. Despite that, the company sees tremendous growth in the overall ERP market.

“We see a big growth in the ERP markets when companies are going from simply implementing toolsets like SAP and Oracle and getting them in place, to now optimizing their businesses using that,” Jason Mausberg, managing director at IDS Scheer Canada, said.

Mausberg said that a customer could use IDS Scheer’s ARIS tool to map out their business processes and strategies and then could use Worksoft’s testing tools to integrate it.

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