The evolution of Cross ALM – Why have we decided to combine the SAP & Atlassian worlds?

Just recently we announced our new partnership with Atlassian. This means that we can now call ourselves official partners of both SAP and Atlassian. In light of this occasion, this article will tell you more about how we got started and what our company focuses on. 

We asked our CEO and founder, Ali Hamoudi, a few questions about his motivations and intentions in founding Cross ALM and summarized them in this article.

What was the motivation behind the founding of Cross ALM?

The main reason why Cross ALM, formerly Contiba, was founded, according to our CEO, was to create the next challenge for himself. Those who are acquainted with our company history, also know that Ali Hamoudi had worked as a freelancer for several years before founding Cross ALM. For him, it was a good opportunity to put his years of experience into a company. He was inspired by the idea of creating his own company, his own brand, through which he could pass on his services and added value to the customer. His motivation was to create a company that would be remembered by customers as a company that could develop complex solutions and solve complicated problems in the ALM area. Initially, the company focused mainly on what Ali Hamoudi had been working with for years. Topics like SAP Solution Manager, SAP landscapes and lifecycles as well as SAP software were the main area of focus. Since then, our team stil successfully consults and develops for numerous customers in the SAP area and Cross ALM is one of the most successful service providers in the area – this niche where not many venture.

 

Why did Contiba become Cross ALM?

When the decision for a new name was broached last year in the context of rebranding, the very first suggestion had been Cross ALM. The name stands for our services as an ALM (Application Lifecycle Managment) service provider. We are now no longer just specialized in SAP, but have shifted our focus to all ITIL-based processes and, of course, the Atlassian and SAP software. All our employees are ITIL certified and we are currently in the process of implementing corresponding Atlassian and SAP certifications for the respective members as well.

 

Since when have we been Atlassian experts and why?

Since the beginning of Contiba, we had chosen Jira as our project management tool. Back in 2015, we realized that we needed a flexible tool for small teams in order to be able to efficiently carry out project management in our internal departments as well as in customer projects. It was clear that Jira was the number one choice. Jira is easy to use for both IT and non-IT teams. Since then, we have used Jira for all HR, marketing and accounting purposes. In the course of the last years and constant exchange with our customers, we finally realized that quite a number of customers had the requirement to become more agile. This trend of increasing agility is nothing new and has clearly started to have more influence on SAP, especially in the past few years. We ourselves have been agile for years and know the benefits of agile strategies. Finally, we came to a point where we had to reinvent ourselves and decide where the journey would take us as a team and as a company. It quickly became clear to us that we wanted to add Atlassian products to our service and product portfolio.

 

Where did the basic idea for the Cross Connector Jira Solman come from?

According to Ali, the pivotal moment was back in 2018 during a conversation with a customer who jokingly asked if Jira could somehow be connected to Solman. After an increasing number of customers contacted us with the same requirements, we decided to start development. Many customers already knew that we were experts in interface programming.

During the early years of Contiba, now Cross ALM, various systems such as Service Now, OTLF, HP and many other of the most popular IT tools were connected to Solution Manager. It made all the more sense for us to work on new integrations with Jira, because after years of using it ourselves, we were able to put ourselves in the customer’s shoes. So we managed to create a new perfect tool that allowed the integration of Jira and Solman. Being professionals and technical experts in both Jira and SAP, we were able to use this to our advantage and thus put our knowledge of the last years into this solution. We know the software requirements inside out and therefore have many qualities built into our Cross Connector.

What are the future plans for the company?

According to Ali Hamoudi, the goal for the next few years is very clear: to place our connectors with as many customers as possible to help them bridge the gap between Jira and SAP Solution Manager. Ali also has another goal in mind- namely to build more bridges from Jira and Atlassian to SAP. There are numerous interfaces or gaps where it makes sense to connect the two software to increase the added value for customers. The goal is simply to accompany our customers on their ALM journey and support them with both technological and organizational changes. Broadly speaking, the company’s future plans can therefore be summarized in four pillars. First, there is the pillar of agility and the goal that we can help customers with agile change management. The second pillar is in the area of Atlassian, where we have set ourselves the goal of becoming a Platinum Partners – we are currently Silver Partners moving on to Gold. The third pillar relates to SAP, where we are of course constantly expanding our knowledge, and the last pillar involves the growth and optimization of our own products. The entire Cross ALM team whether it be marketing, accounting, consultants, developers or management are behind these pillars. We, working together as a team bear the responsibility and live agility on a daily basis.

 

Curious to learn more about our Cross Connector Jira/Solman?

Register for our webinar on “Agile S/4HANA migration with Jira & SAP Solution Manager” on September 22nd at 11 am and find out how our Jira / Solman cross-connector works. Based on a use case with the Berliner Stadtreinigung (BSR), Ali Hamoudi will show why it makes sense to combine the SAP Solution Manager with the agile Jira software.