Case Study/Aprimo

Aprimo Standardizes API Collaboration, Testing, and Governance on Postman

Aprimo Standardizes API Collaboration, Testing, and Governance on Postman

About

Aprimo provides technology solutions that enable brands to optimize their marketing campaign content, operations, and performance. Enterprise companies around the world use Aprimo to manage their end-to-end campaign process across multiple channels and media.

APIs are an integral part of the Aprimo platform. Customers use Aprimo APIs to pull data to manage digital assets, productivity, and project ROI. Aprimo also builds APIs to enable a range of third-party integrations, such as with Salesforce. By standardizing API collaboration, testing, and governance on the Postman API Platform, Aprimo has been able to scale API testing and improve quality.

Aprimo logo
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Industry

Software & Technology

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Use Cases

Automated Testing, Collaboration, Governance

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Key Features (Top 3)

Postman Collections, API Documentation, Collection Runner

Results

Aprimo achieved the following results using Postman.

Increased Productivity

Scaled Testing from 100s to 1000s of Requests

Reduced Testing Time by 83%

The Challenge

The Postman API Platform has been a preferred tool at Aprimo for many years. Back in 2014, Allen Reeves was a test engineer on the Professional Services team focused on client customizations. When he had to test a new API endpoint, a developer recommended that he try Postman. Allen found the platform easy to use, and it helped him get his job done quickly and efficiently.

As time went on, Allen began working with multiple teams in different parts of the world. At the end of his day in the US, he would attach the Postman Collection that he was working on to a Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) ticket or an email in order to share it with colleagues in Manilla or Beijing. The next morning, Allen would find the updated collection in his inbox. This manual, disjointed process inhibited collaboration and slowed everyone down.

The Solution

Allen convinced Aprimo senior management of the benefits of upgrading their Postman plan to support large-scale API collaboration. At that point, Allen and his colleagues began building out a comprehensive collaboration framework centered around Postman Collections and workspaces. To help scale and automate testing, the team refactored their set of API requests into individual collections that represented different functional areas of the application.

Single source of truth for API requests

Today, Aprimo has more than 30 Postman Collections shared across its multiple workspaces. Collections are also selectively shared with customers to help them understand how to pull data from, or write data to, the Aprimo platform by customer-facing teams. Each collection represents a single source of truth for a particular API, ensuring that everyone works from the same foundation. As a result, cross-team and customer collaboration has never been smoother.

With everyone using Postman, working across teams and time zones is so much easier. API collaboration has just gone through the roof.

Allen Reeves, Senior Test Engineer, Aprimo

Seamlessly scaling documentation processes

As the number of API collections grew, Postman helped Aprimo stay on top of documentation with no extra effort. Postman’s API documentation tool automatically generated clean, easy-to-follow documentation for each collection, keeping pace with updates as the collections evolved.

One of my favorite Postman features is the API documentation tool. We don’t have to worry about writing the docs—Postman automatically generates them for us.

Allen Reeves, Senior Test Engineer, Aprimo

Governance ensures quality control in a self-service model

With so many users, teams, and collections, Aprimo needed an easy way to share collections widely and still ensure the quality and integrity of each one. Fortunately, Postman’s flexibility enabled them to set up a governance structure that worked for the organization at large.

Once a team has created and tested their Postman Collection, they add it to a shared Postman workspace for internal peer review. A reviewer then makes sure that the collection meets Aprimo’s quality standards for documentation, configuration, environment variables, and more.

Once approved, write access to the collection is locked, and it gets promoted to a particular server based on its associated module or microservice. At that point, anyone in the company, from product owners to designers to developers, can access and run the collection.

The Outcome

Eight years after Allen’s first introduction to Postman, API collaboration at Aprimo is standardized on Postman. This ensures that everyone is working with the same API information contained within a Postman Collection that has been vetted for quality and completeness. Allen himself has become the internal Postman champion, and he regularly fields questions and supports Postman onboarding of fellow engineers.

Postman standardization has also enabled Aprimo to automate and scale API testing. Previously, QA engineers tested a few hundred requests per day. By refactoring requests into Postman Collections, they are now testing approximately 7,000 requests daily. What once took upwards of two hours to run these tests, now takes only 20 minutes.

Leveraging more of Postman in the future

The Aprimo team is looking into using Postman mock servers to test specific requests instead of hitting third-party servers with thousands of superfluous requests. This would allow them to send a request to a mock server and validate the response without having to connect to VSTS or production servers.

In addition, they are looking at ways to implement pull request functionality between Postman and VSTS. They want to export collections from Postman, import them into a repository, and then use Newman, Postman’s command-line collection runner, to trigger their automation scripts and run the collections in their VSTS pipeline. With this in place, Aprimo will be able to further scale their QA operations.

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