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Cvent transforms API discovery and quality with Postman Collections

Postmanaut working with Cvent A P I. Illustration.


Cvent's events platform serves professionals at each stage of the event management journey to help them plan, promote, and execute events of all kinds. Whether it's for an event organizer, venue manager, or supplier, Cvent provides tools that automate and simplify the end-to-end event management process.

Having served 4.9 million events worldwide since 1999, the technology powering Cvent has grown to thousands of microservices. With such a rich ecosystem of private, partner, and public APIs, the Postman API Platform is crucial in ensuring that the company's teams of software engineers can discover, explore, and integrate with the functionality they need.


Improved API discovery

More efficient cross-team collaboration

Stronger quality assurance through standardization

The Challenge

Since adopting a microservices architecture, Cvent's portfolio of private, partner, and public APIs has grown immensely. Combining that substantial growth with hundreds of software development teams in locations around the world meant that API discovery became almost impossible. Without a central source of API truth, engineers frequently recreated functionality already available elsewhere in the company.

Similarly, Cvent teams often developed their own processes, which made collaboration between teams less productive. Without a common API toolset across the company, onboarding both internal and partner developers took longer than was ideal. Having seen the benefits of the Postman API Platform in their own work, the company's engineering leadership recognized the platform as the ideal way to address their API discoverability and exploration challenges while maintaining speed and ease of development.

The Solution

With developers in multiple locations, and some teams having joined through acquisition, Cvent engineering leadership was cautious about imposing blanket requirements across the organization. Instead, they began by adopting the OpenAPI Specification as the standard for specifying existing partner APIs as well as all future APIs. The company also worked to improve discovery of existing APIs by incentivizing teams to refactor their specs to OpenAPI.

The larger part of that API discovery plan, though, was to develop a single place where developers could find, learn, and test the company's APIs. Although their original intent was to solve this problem by building an internal developer portal, they found that Postman Collections gave them the same benefits without the expense of an in-house solution.

Prior to Postman, a developer learning one of our APIs would need to spend time reading code to figure it out. Today, they can browse and experiment directly in Postman, meaning they are productive much sooner.

Brent Ryan, VP of Engineering, Cvent

In addition to improving Cvent's API discovery, the Postman platform has also acted as a focal point for standardizing Cvent's approach to API governance. Each new API enters a review process which starts with the development team building and submitting a Postman Collection. This helps to provide a common path for ensuring API quality, with engineers using the Postman Collection Runner to build and execute tests both manually and as part of their automated CI/CD pipelines.

The Outcome

Postman has enabled the Cvent team to collaborate more easily, deliver higher-quality APIs, and progress on their journey towards API-first development.

Postman solved Cvent's API discovery problem

With thousands of microservices and externally facing APIs, no single engineer could have hoped to know the full extent of the company's various APIs. Today, with Postman acting as one of the company's central registers, developers have a single place to browse and experiment with those APIs.

If I'm integrating with one of our thousands of microservices, Postman makes me more productive because it gives me everything I need immediately at my fingertips.

Brent Ryan, VP of Engineering, Cvent

Discovery isn't just a one-time thing, though. Postman Collections enable developers to keep track of which version of an OpenAPI spec relates to the published version of that API in a particular region, making it easier to reason about its behavior during ongoing integration work.

Collaboration is faster and smoother thanks to Postman

Postman streamlines how both internal and partner developers learn and onboard with Cvent's APIs. Not only do collections provide a low-friction way for engineers to interact with services but they also act as a prompt for standardization across teams.

With Postman, engineers now learn APIs by testing the endpoints directly in the Postman Collection, as well as reading and leaving comments that provide context. That asynchronous knowledge-sharing reduces the need for meetings and other productivity barriers. Quality engineers, in particular, have greater autonomy as they can learn, test, and leave feedback about an API where work on that API takes place and with minimal input from product engineers.

It isn't just in product engineering where Postman enables collaboration: downstream teams, such as sales engineers, are also able to explore and experiment with API capabilities when prototyping solutions for customers. Those customers can then use Postman to see their ideas and requirements implemented sooner in the development cycle. Such rapid product validation leads to APIs that match real-world needs and usage more precisely.

Improved governance makes it easier to take APIs public

One of the key benefits of using Postman is that there is no longer a quality gap between internally facing services and external APIs.

One example of how Postman enables this is drift detection. Both manual and automated processes use the Postman Collection to check that an API's outputs match what has been defined in its spec. Combined with integrating Postman tests into Cvent's CI/CD pipeline, engineers can build APIs with the confidence that those APIs can be used by their colleagues, by partners, or by the public. All it takes to make an API externally facing is flipping a switch in the spec.

The Postman platform has been a crucial element in enabling Cvent to manage their growth from hundreds to thousands of APIs. As their API portfolio expands, the company's engineering leaders see Postman continuing to play a growing role in how their teams build, collaborate, test, and deliver high-quality APIs.

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