Speaking from Home

Conferences, events and meetups are all things I enjoy. I have been an organizer, speaker & presenter, host and volunteer at many events. When 2020 started, I had big hopes and plans of travelling to speak at multiple international events and also had a few local Bangalore events lined up. But the world had to face a pandemic and everything came to a screeching halt.

As many of you, I was disheartened too. But I still hoped for things to get better, thinking we might get to some of the events at least. Things are different now. We now know that this lifestyle is here to stay. We have been working, learning, recruiting, networking and meeting remotely and might have to continue to do so for a while.

But where does this put the life of a ‘speaker’ – someone who enjoys speaking, being invited to attend and talk at events?

Well, I would like to highlight how I have been pleasantly surprised by the state of our events and their emergence from all the cancellations, losses and hearbreaks!

In the past 6 months, I have spoken at more events I would have normally! I have had the chance to connect with multiple events in various ways and all of them have shown me the resilience of our community.

TestBash Home 2020

It started with TestBash Home. Since TestBash Detroit was cancelled where I was to speak in April this year, I was invited to speak at the Testbash Home. It was a unique and fun event handled superbly by the MoT team. I have written in detail about the event and my experience here – https://testwithnishi.com/2020/05/07/my-experience-speaking-at-testbash-home/

TribalQonf , STeP-In Summit, Test Leadership Congress 2020

I was invited by Mahesh Chikane to speak at the TribalQonf which was a great opportunity. I presented about Adopting a Risk Based Test Approach and my talk was appreciated for which I am always #grateful !

My talk at TribalQonf

The event was organised well and I am glad to be a part of this superb round up video along with some awesome speakers!

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4 Exit Criteria your User Stories must have

Planning and developing new features at the fast pace of agile is a hard game. Knowing when you are really done and ready to deliver is even harder.

Having predetermined exit criteria helps you be able to make the decision that a feature is truly ready to ship. In my article published at TestRail Blog, I compiled a list of exit criteria you must add to your user story to make it easy to bring conformity and quality to all your features.

All Tasks Are Completed

This first one sounds obvious, but it may not be. I still see many teams struggling with getting their testing done within the sprint. Developers work on a user story and deem it done, while testers are left to play catch-up in the next sprint.

Put that practice to an end once and for all by making sure that no user story can be proclaimed done without having all tasks under it completed, including development tasks, testing tasks, design and review tasks, and any other tasks that were added to the user story at the beginning.

Ensuring all tasks are completed in a sprint also mandates that you begin thinking in depth about each user story and the tasks necessary for each activity to be completed, so that you do not miss out on anything at the end.

Tests Are Automated Whenever Possible

As our agile teams move toward continuous delivery and adopting DevOps, our testing also needs to be automated and made a part of our pipelines. Ensuring that test automation gets done within the sprint and is always up to pace with new features is essential.

By having test automation tasks be a part of a user story delivery, you can keep an eye out for opportunities to automate tests you are creating, allocate time to do that within the sprint, and have visibility of your automation percentages.

I have used the following exit criteria:

  • At a minimum, regression tests for the user story must be added to the automation suite
  • At least 50% of tests created for the user story must be automated
  • Automated regression must be run at least once within the sprint

Depending on what your automation goals are, decide on a meaningful standard to apply to all your user stories.

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Understanding Burnout Symptoms in Tech Workers

Work in the tech industry is very demanding. We pointed out before in our article entitled ‘Mental Health for People in Tech’ that this industry is characterized not only by long work hours, but also high stress and great pressure to perform well — all of which can adversely impact your mental health. Not only that, but they can also cause burnout, which is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a syndrome caused by chronic and unmanaged workplace stress. Sadly, we often fail to recognize when we are suffering from it.

That said, this article will help you identify burnout symptoms so you can understand this syndrome better for yourself and for those around you who might be experiencing it too.

The Symptoms

The following are some warning signs of burnout:

Irritability and indifference

Tech Republic notes in an article on burnout warning signs that being irritable and indifferent are telltale signs of burnout. Granted, getting irritated is a normal reaction — but if it happens more than usual or if you end up snapping at someone for the smallest reason, you’re likely burned out. The same holds true when both your attention to detail and job interest wane. This increasing detachment is one of the three dimensions of burnout, according to the WHO.

Exhaustion

It’s normal to feel tired at the end of your work shift, but if you feel drained just hours (or even minutes) after starting work, then you’re probably burned out. This energy depletion is yet another dimension of burnout, and it can be exacerbated by the long hours expected of you.

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Upcoming Talks and Events 2020

The year 2020 has started on a good note. I am excited to have been invited to speak at amazing events. Here is a list of my upcoming talks and events–

The details of each of these events and my talks can be found at their respective websites at->

Selenium Day : https://seleniumday.com/

DevopsCon Singapore: https://devopscon.io/singapore/program-singapore/

TestBash Detroit: https://www.ministryoftesting.com/events/testbash-detroit-2020

Looking forward to each of these!

*********UPDATE********

Things changes drastically as 2020 progressed.

Events have been postponsed / cancelled / moved online due to lockdowns due to COVID-19 Pandemic

You will find new details of the events , schedule and my talks in later posts.

**************************

Guest Talk at Qapitol QA

I was invited by Ajay Balamurugadas to present a guest talk at his organisation Qapitol QA for their enthusiastic test team. I spoke about Layers of Test Automation to design a robust test automation framework. The topic was well received and the testers in audience showed keen interest and had some good questions! It was a good experience visiting and meeting the team and presenting a short demo of Sahi Pro too!

The testers at Qapitol QA are surely an inquisitive lot with a dynamic attitude and quest for learning. They showed a lot of interest in Sahi Pro as a tool, and also about test automation in general. I like to encourage such talent and help them in any possible way. I wish to continue the relationship and see them again in future events.

The Value of Risk-Based Testing from an Agile ViewPoint

When I first heard about risk-based testing, I interpreted it as an approach that could help devise a targeted test strategy. Back then I was working with a product-based research and development team. We were following Scrum and were perpetually working with tight deadlines. These short sprints had lots to test and deliver, in addition to the cross-environment and non-functional testing aspects.

Learning about risk-based testing gave me a new approach to our testing challenges. I believed that analyzing the product as well as each sprint for the impending risk areas and then following them through during test design and development, execution and reporting would help us in time crunches.

But before I could think about adopting this new found approach into our test planning, I had a challenge at hand: to convince my team.

In my recent article published at Gurock’s blog site , I have written about my experience on exploring risk based testing and convincing my agile team about its importance and relevance using their own sprints’ case study.

Using the analysis of a sprint’s user stories, calculating Risk Priority Number (RPN) and the Extent of Testing defined, I was able to showcase in my own team’s case study, ways our testing could benefit and better itself by following risk based approach in a simplified manner.

Risk Priority Number

To read the complete article, Click Here–> 

In the article I talk about–

  • Tackling the Agile Challenges
  • Benchmarking Risks and a Focused Approach
  • Improving Test Process and Results

Do share your thoughts on Risk Based Testing!

Cheers

Nishi

 

 

 

Guest Talk @ ETMarlabs meetup for EUROSTAR 2017 #magicoftestinginindia

I was invited to present a guest talk at the meetup organised by ET Marlabs team for EUROSTAR 2017 on 9th Sep 2017- being the first of its kind in India and I gladly obliged! Presented a talk on Agile Manifesto and its learning for keen testers and answering our dilemmas in agile testing. The talk was very well received and brought out some great discussions with the participants. I was accompanied by another guest speaker Mr. Vinay Krishna who spoke about Behavior Driven Development BDD framework using Cucumber which was a very informative session too.

The team at ET Marlabs had also organised some great activities, testing relay game and quiz for the participants which brought out their testing minds and enthusiasm , which was well rewarded too! I would like to thank them for their kind invitation and would encourage them to organise and participate in more such community events!

Have a glimpse here –

http://highonblog.com/teamstar-2017-the-magic-of-testing-meetup-in-india/ 

My talk at the UNICOM World Quality Summit 2017, Bangalore

Hello Friends,

I was recently invited to speak at the World Quality Summit 2017 organised by UNICOM at The Leela Palace, Bangalore. The event saw attendees from many teams from Pune, Gurgaon and the city itself who participated in the Quality Olympiad. It was a good mix of audience and lots of interesting talks and discussions during the sessions.

I spoke on the Practical risks in Agile teams and Ways how testers can help build-in continuous quality in Agile projects.It was a great experience, met some great people and enthusiastic teams and got awarded the Thought leadership Certificate by UNICOM!

Check it out!

 

Cheers

Nishi