Global Adoption of Helix Core Over SVN for Multinational Energy

Multinational Energy Company was founded in 1879 with approximately 65,000 employees. They embraced Helix Core to improve version management among a globally dispersed team of developers working on an e-procurement solution and collaborating across the US, Argentina, the Philippines, India and Europe.

Why they adopted Perforce Helix


Improved change management


Single source version control


Cohesive code collaboration

Coming from where this group was with our previous technology, we’ve improved ten-fold by adopting Perforce."

“We adopted Perforce for better change management, version control and collaboration among our developers.”


CVS and SVN Customization Challenges

Multinational Energy Company was suffering massive challenges in customizing its new e-procurement system. This global solution was deployed in over 70 different environments. Using CVS and Subversion (SVN) to manage all the custom code and configurations for the system was causing delays and outages. Maintaining Sarabanes-Oxley compliance was also another challenging factor.

There were several things to consider:

  • Unstructured code promotion workflows resulted in overwritten changes.
  • Developers were creating multiple branches causing limited visibility into processes or code statuses.
  • Inability to enforce access control or track changes.
  • Global teams experienced delays and extended sync times, slowing down development.
  • Merge features in CVS and SVN resulted in frequently broken builds and regressions.
  • Binaries and source code couldn’t be combined in a single repository, creating silos and unnecessary complexity.

“Promoted changes were constantly stomping out existing changes. We were manually promoting code outside of the source system. There was no conflict resolution and no merge process to incorporate changes. This was inefficient and costly.”


Why Make the Switch Off SVN?

“We adopted Perforce for better change management, version control, and collaboration among our developers.”

Perforce was first introduced to the company by its e-procurement software vendor, who also used Helix Core. The vendor chose Perforce because:

  • Ability to manage all binaries, artwork, multimedia files, code, configuration files, and markups in one place.
  • Built-in workflows for code promotion via streams.
  • No more SVN “code clobbering."
  • Visibility and review capabilities for changes made outside of Perforce’s workflow.
  • Fine-grained access control, audit trails, and an extensive change history.


Helix Core Bumps Up DevOps

Perforce streams improved the dev-test-ops pipeline with changes flowing up the stack. All changes made in Helix Core were sent from the depot right to the target server. Now Multinational Energy Company could stream paths and restrict what users could see or modify. Application rebuilds took around 30 minutes, which was a time saver for developers. The new production environments created using a single sync-down from the Helix Core server. These included all binaries and necessary configurations. The ability to implement end-to-end tracking brought rogue development in line. Perforce merge tools empowered development to better resolve conflicts.


Improved Compliancy Performance 

Adopting Helix Core resulted in significant productivity gains and improved tracking and visibility. This was a huge bonus when ensuring that the company’s purchases are Sarbanes-Oxley compliant. Streams have become key to production and support. The company is now able to rely on Perforce for effective application change management and server deployment. Compliance has improved because the company now has the flexibility to adapt to any future regulatory changes. “I like Perforce Streams for workflow,” said the Software Engineer. “It just makes sense.”

By consolidating all their code onto Helix Core, they have decreased administration costs. The stage is set for automated builds, continuous integration, and automated deployment. Now Multinational Energy Company can address and continue to improve varied development practices across their enterprise.