How Zalando serves more than 16 million customers with BPMN

Zalando is Europe‘s largest online fashion retailer, famous for its exclusive and extensive ranges of clothing, accessories and sports goods from global brands and private labels. Founded in Berlin in 2008, Zalando works with more than 1,500 manufacturers to serve more than 16 million customers across 15 European markets. 

Zalando has used Camunda Platform to execute its customer orders since 2014 — from creating accounting data, communication with payment service providers, holding articles in logistics centers, sending order confirmations, fraud checks, to communicating with its ERP system. 

Zalando introduced Camunda Platform to manage the complex logic behind processing orders. Its ‘take order’ process includes business logic, as well as numerous service integrations, such as the coupon service, stock service, payment service, partner service and integration with the logistics system and SAP. This process had initially been automated via a self-developed ‘process framework.’ But with process logic  spread across multiple systems, it was becoming impossible to understand the actual operation of this  strategically important core process.

Zalando was able to create a professionally documented ‘take order’ process that corresponds 100% to technical reality, by leveraging Camunda Platform. Most questions regarding the process can be instantly answered by a quick look at the BPMN diagram, and the team was able to develop test scenarios for all business transactions, as well as integration tests for end-to-end processes. 

Scalability and performance are critical for the successful execution of orders of more than 16 million active customers — asynchronous processing, for example, has to take place in less than 300ms. To achieve this, a high-availability runtime environment with frontend nodes for load balancing and backend nodes to perform jobs was put in place. 

For Zalando, a great customer experience is what sets the company apart from competitors. Its continuous improvement of order taking processes managed on Camunda Platform has been foundational to Zalando’s growth. Read more about how Camunda has helped power Zalando’s growth in our case study. 

Camunda at Zalando Case Study