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Enter the Expleo World and discover how Expleo is helping UK businesses accelerate digital change

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Context & challenge

With a 30-year track record, the Megane has proved to be one of Renault’s most prolific family cars. Over the last decade, our engineers have worked for the Renault Group, and are proud to become a trusted partner on their major projects worldwide. For example, we have assisted in the design, development and validation of vehicle IT modules for on-board computers, architecture assembly systems, electric systems and cable routing, as well as chassis parts and components.

 

When the Group wanted to complete the Megane range by adapting the standard model to an estate (station wagon), they lacked the internal expertise and processes for the design and industrialisation of this new vehicle. We were ready to help.

Solution & outcomes

 

Our main asset was our ability to provide project management and customer support for over 60 engineers, and supplier management for lean engineering.

 

Throughout our two-and-a-half-year collaboration, we drew on the skills of our international team, who could bring the necessary skills and experience to their respective Renault counterparts. Our French, Spanish and Romanian teams worked as one to provide the right balance between skills, cost and proximity. In total, this project mobilised 100 people within our group.

Complete control from A to Z

 

Our teams were commissioned to design the vehicle derivate with overall autonomy for the entire project – from styling freeze to manufacturing approval.

 

This included the following missions:

 

  • Selection of suppliers
  • Reception of parts
  • Support to the production plant in Spain for the adaptation of industrial resources

Production of the first models of the derived version of the Megane before the Renault factory took over the production in series.

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"Ultimately, Renault was able to improve its range, on time and on budget, without the need to recruit new staff or develop new processes in-house. "

Philippe Hidden, Global Account Manager

Anthony, Project and Programme Manager at Expleo, outlines what we’re doing to help make road safer.
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Sikandar, Automation Technical Lead at Expleo, explains how we’re helping our music industry clients harness technological change.

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Sinead, Senior Quality Assurance Analyst at Expleo, discusses how by streamlining basic processes, we’re helping to elevate theme park experiences for consumers.

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Context & challenge

In response to growing consumer demands for ubiquitous information and services through their mobile devices, a world-leading bank recognised the need to evolve from a traditional top-down waterfall project model into a fully agile organisation to accelerate the pace of IT change.

 

The leadership team acknowledged that the current 18-month lag between request and release for new products was unacceptable in the eyes of today’s digitally literate customers. By replacing legacy systems, IT could deliver new features and products at pace, with flexibility, and for lower costs – offering additional value to the customer. The bank also identified the importance of bringing its business and IT onto the same trajectory.

 

Since 2009, Expleo has worked alongside the client as a preferred partner for testing and quality assurance.

Solution & outcomes

 

Our experts created a multi-year initiative containing ‘tribes’, ‘squads’ and ‘guilds’ of employees to embed a number of IT disciplines, including, Agile, LEAN, SAFe, LeSS, DevOps and Management 3.0. With our quality-focused philosophy, we contributed to the early strategic planning stages of the transformation initiative.

 

We built close relationships with the client’s own workforce, which proved central to the success of its transformation towards agile. The change was both technical and cultural, which is a valuable point of differentiation when introducing a new way of working on an enterprise-wide scale. Expleo’s background in testing and quality assurance enabled our consultants to provide training and coaching enriched by their own hands-on experience in IT.

Approaching full velocity

 

The bank is currently on track to meet its target to deliver new features and products independently, and at full velocity, by the end of 2019. The client’s employees are now being encouraged to learn new skills and to make decisions that benefit their own work within the agile culture. In turn, this will improve productivity and employee satisfaction.

 

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Head of Business Analysis, Shivani, discusses the importance of consumer trust for financial services.

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Context & challenge

 

For our client, one of the leading European airport operators, ground-handling services are fundamental to their operations. The company’s Ground Service Unit handles a few hundred thousand aircraft per year, a performance that requires speed, accuracy and efficiency as well as state-of-the-art technology. Their reputation of being one of the “fastest” hubs in Europe can be attributed mainly to the excellent work of their Ground Service Unit which more than 100 national and international airlines rely on.

 

Previously, all handling processes were documented on paper only. Therefore, all involved stakeholders struggled with countless unclear documentation, along with a high workload. The digital transformation from a paper documented, to a software-based mobile information system for the loading service had to ensure a real-time evaluation of all necessary data and transparency for all involved parties.

 

The implementation made it necessary to set up a cross-company quality plan including 3rd party quality assurance measures providing a future proven, high quality solution, securing the airport operator’s investment. Quality is a key requirement when offering such superior service. High quality service is the airport’s Ground Service standard, and also the customer requirement Expleo had to meet.

Solution & Outcomes

 

The airport operator recognised Expleo as the trusted, autonomous, strategic and independent quality partner to oversee and manage the quality aspects of the complex in-house development including 3rd party deliverables. We provided a tailored consulting team to ensure a high quality standard from accompanying business planning activities to acceptance testing by implementing quality assurance measures with all relevant stakeholders, bridging various requirements and interests.

 

The Expleo consulting service ensured a successfully concluded project with emphasis on highest quality providing in-depth operational and processual knowledge and included the following deliverables:

 

  • Drawing up the business plan hand-in-hand with the airport operator
  • Ensuring a high quality requirement baseline through business analysis, adapting iterative techniques
  • Consulting the client through the project management life-cycle on all quality related subjects
  • Providing process expertise and ensuring risk-based unit/integration testing
  • Benefits for the customer
  • Successful transformation from paper-documented to a software-based ground-handling solution
  • Optimised and faster ground-handling process including electronic data processing
  • High quality data for customised online-evaluation to enable the customer to profit from an improved provision of information

 

Expleo has strong expertise in airport digital solutions. Using continuous quality assurance, our end-to-end approach accelerates change, ensuring business’ agility to deliver faster, better, cost-efficient outputs with greater certainty. As a trusted technology partner Expleo accompanies airport operators and their suppliers throughout the digital project life cycle – from initialisation to successful rollout.

 

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Discover Enso, our first nanosatellite, designed to measure solar activity and its impact on Earth.

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Context & challenge

 

Specsavers is a Partnership of nearly 2,000 locally-run businesses, committed to delivering high quality, affordable optical and hearing care in the communities they serve. It is the largest privately owned optical retailer in the world, operating across 10 countries.

 

Specsavers operates on a joint venture basis, with each store owned and operated by local partners, supported by key specialists in support offices, who provide a range of services, such as marketing, accounting, IT and wholesaling, among others.

 

Specsavers set about rationalising its entire corporate data management strategy by adopting a master data management (MDM) approach to data handling using Oracle’s Product Data Hub. They wanted to ensure that data from the Product Hub was available across all its countries. As many of Specsavers international operations operated different legacy systems, the team needed to ensure that the data flows between the new Product Data Hub and the legacy systems were both reliable and scalable to cope with expected volumes.

 

The first set of products to be migrated to the new MDM system were contact lenses, a category containing over 120,000 products. Data cleansing was a key issue and information in the new Oracle Product Hub had to be correct, as it would become the primary source for product data across all of Specsavers’ main operational systems.

Solution & outcomes

 

Expleo conducted testing and quality assurance for the MDM programme using its onshore and offshore teams in the UK and in India. The test team carried out system and large scale integration testing with multiple legacy systems. This ensured that a single version of product data could be created in the Product Data Hub, enabling distribution to, and use in, all the downstream legacy systems. The testing was of such calibre that zero functional defects leaked from system testing into User Acceptance Testing. Saving Specsavers the time, effort and cost that would have been involved in unnecessary rework. Both organisations worked closely to improve the quality of the application throughout the process.

 

Close collaboration played an important part in ensuring the programme’s success and Expleo tailored its offshore engagement approach to suit Specsavers’ preferred operating model. Technical experts and business analysts from Specsavers frequently worked alongside Expleo teams in India and the UK, ensuring the free flow of information between all parties.

Benefits for the Customer

 

The MDM programme delivered:

 

  • To budget and on time
  • Eighteen months after inception with no major defects discovered after the system went into production.
  • Fundamental change in the way that Specsavers managed its operational data, both in terms of IT systems and organisational change with new teams created as custodians of that data.

 

Although the level and rigour of testing was more intensive than might typically be conducted on a system of this complexity, this paid dividends in the quality of the system delivered to the live environment.

 

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"We worked hard on making this programme a collaborative venture, and the Expleo team went to some lengths to ensure that they were fully engaged and seen as an integral part of the programme team. Expleo assured, from a quality governance point of view, that we were rigorous and robust through the entire process – hence the high-quality outcome for the programme as a whole."

MDM programme Director, Specsavers

Daljit, Engagement Manager at Expleo, discusses how we’re enabling our clients to transform online shopping experiences for their customers.

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We recently partnered with the Data Communications Company (DCC) who are delivering the groundbreaking Ofgem led Switching Programme, a new service that will allow customers to change energy suppliers faster and more reliably.

 

Expleo will support the DCC in the design, build and test phase of the programme, as its Core Systems Assurance partner. It will be working with service providers and contractors to ensure systems are functioning, changes are delivered according to timelines, and risks are identified and mitigated.

The Switching Programme is a major transformation of the energy market which will centralise the existing switching capability. It involves aggregating data from 20 existing service providers, each of whom will need to adapt their current solution. Ultimately, the programme will facilitate market competition, invigorate significant efficiency benefits for energy suppliers and, most importantly, encourage savings for consumers.

 

To manage the complexity of assuring the programme, Expleo will use their Quality Intelligence Platform, part of their innovative AI and quality analytics offering. This will draw quality and performance data from the different service providers into a single dashboard, giving a real-time and predictive view of progress, quality, and velocity. Providing early sight of emerging risks, it will enable DCC and Ofgem to make faster and better-informed decisions, predict and respond to technical risks, and provide them with continuous confidence of the programme delivery.

 

UK Managing Director of Expleo said: “We are delighted to be awarded the Core Systems Assurance Contract for the Switching Programme. Our unique mix of technical assurance expertise and strategic programme and change capability will mean the programme delivers the required quality, functionality, and security to meet increasing customer expectations. Expleo is dedicated to helping DCC deliver reliable, next day switching for energy consumers.”

 

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"The Switching Programme has been a long time in the making and we’re extremely proud to be commencing the design, build and test phase with Expleo as our Core Systems Assurance Partner. This programme will improve how the energy market functions for consumers, providing faster more reliable switching. Expleo will support us in assuring the required improvements, which the programme is intended to deliver."

Richard, Programme Director of the Switching Programme for Data and Communications Company (DCC)

 

 

Chief Information Officer Philip Clayson is putting digital agility at the heart of the company’s strategic transformation plans for the future, following the recent acquisition of SSE Energy Services by OVO Energy.

 

OVO Energy was founded in 2009 and redesigned the energy experience to be fair, effortless, green and simple for all customers. Following the acquisition of SSE Energy Services, today OVO Energy and its Retail partners serve nearly 5 million customers, all striving to deliver more affordable clean energy for everyone.

 

SSE Energy Services has been supplying power to millions of UK homes for decades. The technology infrastructure within the company had been built and maintained with dependability and assurance at its core.

 

Clayson is now empowering the 1,000 strong IT team to adopt a learn-fast, fail-fast culture and mindset, while at the same time maintaining the performance and quality of their outputs. Key to achieving this has been extending the company’s partnership with Expleo. Through the adoption of Expleo’s automated testing solutions, SSE Energy Services can now bring new products to market faster, without sacrificing quality.

 

With customers’ digital engagement increasing and the introduction of smart metering within homes, SSE Energy Services knew it had to focus on digital agility and innovative product offerings.

 

In order to accelerate this direction, SSE Energy Services appointed Philip Clayson as CIO in August 2019, bringing experience of driving fast-paced digital transformation for companies including News Corporation, BT and TalkTalk.

 

SSE Energy Services formed a strategic partnership with Expleo, a leading technology and engineering consultancy. As the two companies previously worked closely together, SSE Energy Services had trust in Expleo’s expertise to help with a key part of the programme. This would help SSE Energy Services maintain performance and quality, but crucially boost agility, shortening product and system releases from several weeks to just a couple of days, by providing a pioneering approach to automation.

 

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"Every build has made massive improvements in our ability to respond to the market quickly and deliver products that customers want. This has made us massively more competitive than we’ve ever been."

Philip Clayson, CIO, SSE Energy Services

Context & challenge

 

In the fast-growing defence sector, government clients are demanding that suppliers embrace digital twinning technology, as a way of improving performance, reducing operating costs and ultimately extending the lifespan of critical assets. To support this change, the UK’s Ministry of Defence announced an incentivisation scheme to fast-track digital innovation in its supply chain.

 

From an engineering perspective, product lifecycle management (PLM) is at the heart of the digital twin, as that’s where all of the relevant digital product knowledge is stored. Engineering firms rely on ever-more sophisticated PLM tools to drive efficiencies in their design and delivery phases. With global competition increasing for contracts, PLM therefore is critical for accelerating speed to market.

 

The need to assure application quality through proactive Quality Assurance techniques has risen up the list of priorities, as manufacturers recognise the time-saving potential of accurate data migration and proactive management of costly defects in their PLM applications. Increased quality can help to de-risk the system and build confidence across the whole lifecycle.

 

Our client is one of the UK’s leading manufacturers in the defence sector. Over the last 10 years, they have partnered with a PLM tool supplier to drive productivity improvements, establish common processes and enhance global collaboration across the lifecycle of its submarine programme.

 

The PLM tool provides their Engineers with the critical digital capability to support the design and manufacturing process. The integrity of the application is therefore vital for quick decision making, improving transparency, and assuring the accuracy of critical business information across the manufacturing value chain.

 

As the firm upgrades to the next version of the tool, Expleo is providing testing and quality assurance services to achieve a smooth migration and also strengthen the testing environment moving forward. PLM test cases are typically complex due to the number of configurations and the level of customisation, as well as the need for integration with enterprise resource planning (ERP), CAD and other applications.

Solution & outcomes

 

With 15 years’ hands-on experience in this field – including privileged access to these PLM tools before they reach the open market – we were able to bring specialist expertise and focus the testing activity in the highest risk areas for maximum impact.

 

In particular, we have regulated the test schedule, improved reporting and analysis, and brought a consistent approach across the product lifecycle. We have set out clear defect standards to curb the back and forth between developers and testers, which can be caused by inaccurate or insufficient information.

 

Being an independent supplier is a benefit, as our people are experts in testing first, rather than development. As a result, we can offer honest, factual information for decision making.

We have helped to increase speed to market from nine to three months. In the highly pressurised defence sector, that speed to market is a source of competitive advantage. The half year also equates to considerable savings, as the client has lower overhead costs for other PLM subcontractors such as the infrastructure partner, tool vendor, programme and project managers, systems integrators and data migration specialists.

 

We were able to provide the client with a level of transparency they hadn’t experienced before. As such, the client’s PLM system has increased confidence at every phase. At the same time, we were able to help the systems integrator to be more effective, by using our testing intelligence to provide clarity on the scope of what they needed to deliver. This collaborative approach led to clearer communications between the systems integrator and the client.

 

Our close working relationship with the PLM tool provider means we can help the client to prepare more effectively for future version updates. We know where the major areas of change are likely to be, so we can help to future proof the current system.

 

As a result, the client has a stronger and more efficient PLM test plan in place, gaining the foresight to identify mitigating actions early and keep operations on track. They know they are testing the right high-risk areas, which means that any possible delays to go-live are reduced significantly.

 

At Expleo, we challenge the traditional time-quality-cost triangle that states you can’t improve one, without making sacrifices on the other two. By helping clients to do the right things at the right moments – and by reducing the number of defects that pass from one phase of production to the next – we believe that improved quality will save both time and cost.

 

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 Context & challenge

 

The strategic decision to become a totally digital organisation offers attractive opportunities in terms of revenue growth and cost saving. However, digital transformation also brings technological, strategic, operational, security and regulatory risks. In today’s highly competitive digital market, hard-won customer trust and confidence can be quickly lost.

 

In order to keep that inherited trust, your systems have to evolve rapidly and maintain the highest level of quality. Our client, one of the world’s largest insurance companies, serving over 80 million customers across 70 countries worldwide, therefore needed to implement a testing centre of excellence (TCoE) to guide, govern and navigate its organisation to assure quality at every stage of the transformation.

 

In particular, our client needed help in:

 

  • Developing an agile process where user story definitions were more consistent, complete and traceable
  • Achieving efficient and effective quality strategies to accelerate time to market and lower the cost of quality
  • Improving its quality leadership and innovation

Solution & outcomes

 

Expleo offers unmatched hands-on experience in implementing a TCoE, with a tried-and-tested step-by-step process that customises the right fit for a global client of this size.

 

The programme spanned many individual projects over several years, so our client needed a reliable supplier who would own the role from start to finish. Drawing on our continuous quality platform, quality management services, quality engineering and testing services, we were able to move our client to world-class status.

 

A key step was the transformation of their core software platform. Known simply as the CBS (company business system), this ran many of the daily operations across its many business units and across multiple countries. Our team provided quality assurance as legacy systems were replaced, existing services consolidated and brand new services were delivered to a highly competitive market.

 

We have partnered with the client for almost 10 years, maintaining a constant focus on evolving our services to support ongoing development initiatives to the CBS. By taking responsibility for programme quality, we helped them to achieve their vision of becoming a digital group.

 

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"We had complete control of the testing factory, taking the responsibility for critical testing out of our client’s hands completely."

Prachi, Digital QA Analyst at Expleo

Context & challenge

 

Creating a better service for passengers means much more than comfortable trains and buses that run on time. Removing the hassle-factor involved with ticketing, for example, can make a daily difference to the commuting experience. By improving smart infrastructure and digital technology to combine different systems, ticketing can progress from a basic necessity into a practical asset that adds value and improves the customer’s connectivity.

But the opposite is also true. A system that falters can result in severe delays, bad buzz and commuter anger. Transport companies need a solution that is tried and tested, before they go live.

Our brief

 

Our client wanted to introduce a new system that allowed passengers with general or half-fare season tickets greater ease and flexibility with their travel plans. Their aim was to enable loyal travellers to access as many services as possible, along the mobility chain, using a single card.

Their vision was for a uniform standard for displaying and checking electronic tickets.

Solution & outcomes

 

We have helped our client with quality assurance during the development of the system, particularly in the fields of test management, test engineering and test automation. By creating sustainable testware, we had the necessary conditions for near-shoring and offshoring the test activities during the system’s operating phase.

 

It needed to be implemented as a hybrid overall project, consisting of multiple subprojects, based on a variety of development and organisational models:

 

  • Scrum-based development teams for highly specialised and proprietary client/server systems
  • Development of financial systems based on SAP ECC and CRM using the waterfall model
  • Integrated project for purchasing inspection device hardware
  • External projects handled by service partners for card production and photo scanning
  • The central test team has been organised in accordance with this project structure.

For a complex, hybrid system, our solution included a number of approaches, including:

 

  • Agile organisation of the test team
  • Release management
  • Development of a suitable test model
  • Test environment planning
  • Reducing dependencies through visualisation
  • Systematisation of technical tests

 

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"The new system is being delivered on schedule, on budget and to the desired quality standard. We are delighted with the results."

Karsten, Client Engagement Senior Manager at Expleo

Expleo group is now a preferred supplier for SNCF Mobilités of technical consultancy services in the fields of “General and Multi-Domain Consulting” and “Embedded Computing and Electronics.” This dual role enables Expleo to provide consulting services for SNCF Mobilités’ engineering hubs, equipment departments, industrial technical centres and maintenance technical centres for all activities and businesses related to rolling stock. This includes mechanics, design, calculation, integrated logistic support, operational safety, quality management, design studies and changes to printed circuit boards, validation of test benches, obsolescence management and software studies.

 


Since 2018, Expleo had been a partner of SNCF Réseaux, an Épic*, which is responsible for the management, operation and development of the railway network.

 

Rail transportation is a key business sector within Expleo. With its specific knowledge and digital expertise, the group supports major industrial players, manufacturers and operators in the design and development of new mobility solutions. It is supported by a network of railway expertise and innovation hubs throughout France.

 

 

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"In the context of major mobility challenges and new client expectations, it is essential that our Group is able to count on partners who share our technological ambition. We therefore welcome the new prospects for collaboration opened up by the signing of this contract between SNCF and the Expleo Group."

Jonathan Bourcet, Expert Buyer Lead PI at SNCF