Happy summer to you all! It’s hard to believe we are halfway through 2017.
Most of us are recalibrating our business plans for the remainder of 2017 and looking at taking some breathing space to recharge the batteries for the remainder of the year. Many businesses struggle to find the right QA approach to support the rapid increase in release cycles and the escalating number of new developments, technologies and interconnected systems delivered by the agile and DevOps approach.
Today testing is seen as an integrated component of the overall QA framework. IT reliant organisations continue to feel under pressure to deliver their changes to live environments as quickly as possible. Hence the growth in continuous integration and continuous delivery. Businesses now recognise an effective QA IT framework delivers real business results such as improved customer experience, revenue growth, faster deployment of changes to production environments and uninterrupted business operations.
Businesses have implemented some alternative solutions to the challenge of understanding where QA fits into their approaches. Creative solutions such as ‘test charters’ replacing test cases and developers moving into the QA role as the role of testers becomes more technical.
As a result, QA vacancies are remaining open for longer periods as the role becomes more technical and not so easy to fill. IT organisations also find themselves competing with each other not just in the commercial space, but also for the talent to drive their IT operations. It is clear the value of QA and the resources required to perform the QA function will continue to grow in importance as businesses continue to be driven by the need for increased speed of delivery. I find myself asking the question, who will represent the voice of QA in such a development driven environment? Is it effective to have the development manager also responsible for QA? In my 20 plus years experience, the mindset of developers and testers are completely different.
I believe the most important solution to overcome these challenges is to ensure that both development and QA remain independent functions and championed by a different manager. This ensures that both have an equal voice at the decision-making table. Businesses also run the risk of further increasing the gap between development and QA if they do not continue to invest in up-skilling testing teams, keeping abreast of new advances in QA tools and QA best practices. Failure to do so will only increase development and QA budgets as businesses struggle to adapt to new technologies.
At Celtic Testing, we believe in integrating QA early in our clients’ projects, shifting QA left. We use a technology, humanistic and intelligence led testing approach. This enables us to deliver value across cost, capability and competency. Businesses are able to increase speed without compromising safety.