SZTAKI switched to Easy Redmine to gain a professional support toolset
SZTAKI is a research institute in Hungary that used very limiting Redmine plugins. Soon, there was a need for a single tool that everyone in the company can work with. SZTAKI needed a solution that brings top-level support tools and issues tracking in one single place. That is why they chose Easy Redmine which helped them increase efficiency and service quality.
Before switching to Easy Redmine
SZTAKI was using Redmine 4.02 with Redmine UP plugins Helpdesk and CRM. But they were missing professional project management support tools and a mobile-based user interface.
A closely related company to SZTAKI has already been using Easy Redmine for project management. There was a practice in using the software, and the management was inclined to introduce a familiar system as well. The top challenges were to have an effective collaboration and the ability to create custom workflows for specific types of tasks.
Expectations to meet
- Full-featured project management for higher efficiency
- Digitalize the company's filing process (using Easy Redmine workflow-based approach)
- Migration and reorganization of Service Desk processes, gain extended features (email-based communication over Easy Redmine issues)
- Professional project management supporting toolset
- On-premise operation
- SAML SSO support
- Available public API for automation purposes
- Integration GitLab
During the implementation, the classic consultation model was pushed into the background, as SZTAKI already had a Redmine-based practice and a team composed of technical experts, many of whom are familiar with problem-tracking and process-based approaches. Support was needed only for very specific problems, typically undocumented functions.
The most challenging tasks:
- The on-premise installation process – There were many interactions with the technical support, and workarounds were to be done.
- SAML/SSO login process – It had to be patched because the out-of-the-box solution doesn’t implement the whole standard, just a part of it
- User provision (related to SSO) and migration issues – A physical implementation (scripting/coding) process
SZTAKI had its settings from the previous Redmine installation and they managed to translate these to the new Easy Redmine environment.
The client chose the server solution based on local regulations and internal security requirements. The server was installed by SZTAKI technical staff on their own. As mentioned above, Easy Redmine's technical staff supported mainly the ad-hoc problems.
Since Redmine and Easy Redmine are quite different, SZTAKI translated all their trackers and workflows to the new system and created the necessary projects, trackers, states, and a small number of issues as a manual migration. Besides that, the mass issue migration was performed by an automatic API2API migration.
The client also managed to create a provisioning system that creates users from SZTAKI central identity management system in Easy Redmine with API calls, so that the users can log in via SSO.
During the implementation of the digitalized filing process, a custom solution was also implemented by SZTAKI for being able to generate unique serial numbers. Support activity was on demand during the whole process.
During the digitalized filing system implementation we trained the key users. This was a consultation-like training. We educated them by going through the thematic blocks. Then we moved to use cases and answered all questions.
SZTAKI created a dev/sandbox environment for themselves with access to our support. Testing of specific settings and the first implementation of trackers and workflows happened here (manual migration testing), including the implementation and testing of custom solutions, like user provisioning and API2API migration. The training was performed in a production environment before the migration and going live.
And the results?
The implementation of Easy Redmine brought:
- The ability to report all HelpDesk problems to a central system and track them without forgetting anything.
- The possibility of defining one place for each project managed by SZTAKI and using the project management tools.
- With the ability to create custom workflows, it is now possible to digitize business processes that were previously managed manually.
- The possibility to track strategic or regulatory objectives with custom workflows, in a verifiable way, by storing all historical activities of trusted, authenticated, and authorized users.
The most used functions
- Issue tracking by HelpDesk: Doing the tasks according to the implemented workflow, recording events by writing comments as short memos, using these memos, and closed issues as a knowledge base.
- Gantt diagram: Roadmap, planning, and scheduling by using sliders of start date and due date intervals, and making dependencies between issues.
- Timesheet: Tracking time on issues by project members, following their monthly timesheet, and reporting timesheet analytics to external partners and the management.
Who is SZTAKI
SZTAKI is a research institute in Hungary, governed by the Eötvös Loránd Research Network. The name is an acronym of the Hungarian name of the institute, while its full English name is Institute for Computer Science and Control.
The Institute was founded in 1964. Its staff consists of more than 300 full-time employees, more than 200 with university diplomas, and more than 70 with scientific degrees.
The fundamental task of the Institute is to perform basic and application-oriented research in an interdisciplinary setting in the fields of computer science, engineering, information technology, intelligent systems, process control, wide-area networking, and multimedia.
Contract-based target research, development, training, and expert support for domestic and foreign industrial, governmental, and other partners are important activities at the Institute.