Expleo has announced details of its role in the development and launch of the HSE's Covid-19 contact tracing app.

The company was responsible for ensuring that the app was user-friendly, fast and reliable.

The app notifies users if they have been in close contact with someone with Covid-19, defining a close contact as someone who was within two-metres of a confirmed case for 15 minutes or more.

Expleo’s test team started work on the project on 17 March and since that date, carried out about 3,400 individual software tests before the app’s launch.

The work totalled 4,727 man hours - the equivalent of almost 591 working days.

A total of 26 Expleo employees were involved in the project, while a core team of 10 people led and oversaw testing.

To ensure that a user’s surroundings did not negatively impact the performance of the app, and to ensure the safety of the testers, testing was carried out in simulated environments with multiple devices.

Testing was later carried out on public transport to ensure that users only received notifications when appropriate.

Fran Thompson, Chief Information Officer of the HSE, said the app is an essential addition to the HSE's existing contact tracing work.

"For it to be effective, it needed to be easy to download and use, with highly responsive software that can cope with a very large user base. We chose Expleo due to their extensive experience in software testing and quality assurance. Their knowledge and commitment was invaluable in ensuring that the contact tracing app met all of the stringent targets and requirements we had set," he said.

Phil Codd, Managing Director for Ireland, Expleo, said the team was honoured to work on the project.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has had – and continues to have – a devastating impact on people and communities across Ireland. We therefore felt honoured that in recognition of our experience and expertise, we were invited by the HSE to join the fight against COVID-19 by carrying out software testing on one of the world's first contact tracing apps," he said.

"We are delighted to see such high volumes of people downloading it and hope that this will continue so that we can all work together to reduce the risk of Covid-19 infection for everyone," he added.