Wizards of the Coast adventures into automation
As the world’s largest publisher of adventure games, Wizards of the Coast is known for household names such as Magic: The Gathering and Dungeons and Dragons. Since 1990, the company has published collectible card games, board games and video games that are played by millions of fans of all ages.
Wizards of the Coast has multiple development teams that frequently request data for testing and integration of new functionalities. To help facilitate data distribution, the company uses a centralized data management team to process and execute requests from the development team. The data team is responsible for acquiring, cleansing, sub-setting and provisioning data for teams all over the organization. Failures in the process were common, because the existing process had to be completed manually. The process often took as long as 23 hours to complete and often delayed completion of testing. This, in turn, delayed the launch of new features and reduced productivity.
PK worked closely with the data management and development teams to develop a solution that improved reliability and reduced the amount of time from data request to delivery, while meeting the needs of the development and the data teams. A custom solution that integrates with the existing Wizards of the Coast storage platform was designed to automate a large portion of data acquisition and preparation. Activities that formerly took more than 100 steps to complete were either completely automated or reduced to involve minimal manual execution.
Using Agile methodology, PK then refined the solution so that it could deliver data and adapt to new demands at a rapid pace, reducing the time spent on provisioning data from 23 hours to less than 20 minutes. Third-party APIs were used to drive automation and consistency. Self-service capabilities were built into the new solution, allowing the development team to submit and monitor their data requests.
The result was a solution that helped Wizards of the Coast increase productivity, efficiency and the rate at which new features were tested and launched.
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