Lowe's Companies - Enterprise Development & Support

Lowe's Companies - Enterprise Development & Support

One of the world's largest home improvement stores - a company with more than 260,000 employees serving 15 million customers every week - turns to Quoin to support its in-store and ecommerce systems. Why? Because Quoin offers unparalleled commitment to software performance - not just on Day One, but over a decade of service.

Lowe's Companies - Enterprise Development & Support

One of the world's largest home improvement stores - a company with more than 260,000 employees serving 15 million customers every week - turns to Quoin to support its in-store and ecommerce systems. Why? Because Quoin offers unparalleled commitment to software performance - not just on Day One, but over a decade of service.
Lowe’s Companies Inc. has the resources to choose any technology company in the world to ensure its vital systems are usable, reliable, maintainable, scalable, and secure. The company continues to choose Quoin because we offer independent thinking and a commitment to quality that is rare in our industry. At Quoin, developers not only build great software; we anticipate and forestall problems others simply hope to avoid.

Recent accomplishments illustrate Quoin’s strengths in four key categories:

  • System optimization. Quoin conceived and implemented an approach for optimizing Lowe’s critical point-of-sale system modules that significantly boosted software performance. The work enabled Lowe’s to avoid a hardware upgrade for more than 1,600 stores, saving the business millions of dollars.
  • Security enhancement. When the Heartbleed vulnerability threatened the security of Lowe’s encrypted information, Quoin took the initiative to suggest and construct changes to protect the enterprise systems. Quoin routinely tracks security announcements to help Lowe’s stay ahead of the competition.
  • Code maintenance. While conducting a regular code review, Quoin identified and corrected a defect that eliminated 400-500 memory leaks—key system errors that could have led to computer crashes.
  • Process improvement. Quoin has improved the productivity of Lowe’s own IT staff, introducing such key processes as agile planning and requirements analysis, continuous integration practices, and CMMI/ITIL-based quality metrics to assess source code quality.

“With a lot of other vendors, you have to explicitly say, ‘Do this, this, or this.’ At Quoin, if you give us a broad statement—‘We need it to do this.’—we can figure out how to do it, do it well, and do it so that someone six months down the road will be able to understand and make changes to it,” says Jeff Samuels. A software engineer with more than 20 years of experience who works full time as a technical lead, Samuels is just one of more than a dozen onshore and offshore Quoin engineers dedicated to ongoing projects and full-time-equivalent assignments with Lowe’s.

Crisis Response Specialists

Quick to ramp up to meet any unexpected need, Quoin is also adept at ferreting out the small glitches that can cause major crises. That’s why Lowe’s called Quoin when managers discovered a software defect was losing the company hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of merchandise. Quoin swiftly investigated the problem, corrected the error, and stopped the bleeding.

Similarly, when a database provided by another vendor performed so poorly that stores were unable to function, Quoin was tasked with finding a solution—and succeeded within a week.

A strategic, specialized firm focused on software quality, performance, and robustness, Quoin takes a personal approach to supporting Lowe’s complex operations. Since our principals are deeply involved in every aspect of the business, Quoin is able to provide a high level of service that simply isn’t available elsewhere.

“Usually we get involved in a company to solve some disaster,” says Jean Pierre LeJacq, Quoin’s co-founder and chief technology officer. “If we stay in long enough, we try to prevent the next one.”

Ahead of the Competition

Quoin’s relationship with Lowe’s Companies began in 2004, when the hardware giant turned to us for object-oriented design, a cutting-edge approach that has since become the industry standard. Today Lowe’s continues to rely on Quoin to provide state-of-the-art support for all of its critical store systems—a rich set of software modules used by tens of thousands of people to handle receiving, warehousing, point-of-sales, kiosks, and self-check-out. Recent projects include:

  • Establishing a remote build system to enable hundreds of developers to work simultaneously without affecting each other;
  • Ensuring the security of financial data in compliance with the provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act;
  • Enabling Lowe’s management to effectively monitor store-level compliance with new labeling requirements demanded by California Weights and Measures; and
  • Securing the company’s health-care information to meet the demands of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.

Whether we’re implementing a logging framework for a point-of-sale system, reengineering the Lowes.com website, or working to integrate new, third-party hardware into Lowe’s existing systems, Quoin always makes the investment in quality because we prefer long-term client relationships. Our service at Lowe’s even extends to writing requests for proposals and evaluating deliverables from other vendors to ensure that all of the company’s technology meets the highest standards for performance.

As Quoin President Brad Kain says, “We have to be better than the other firms.” Many IT consultants can afford to skimp on quality because by the time the problems show up, the individuals are long gone. Quoin is not that kind of company. We fully expect to be around to benefit from getting the job done right the first time. As a result, Lowe’s and all of our clients reap the rewards—top-of-the-line software solutions.