My experience as a Panel speaker @LeadDev webinar

I was invited by @LeadDev organisation to be a part of a webinar where we had a panel discussion on “Building a better testing culture“. I was elated to be a part of this great group pf panelists alongside Thayse Onofrio from Thoughtworks and Marcus Merrell from Saucelabs. We had a spirited and interesting discussion and shared some meaningful ideas on the topic. I would also like to thank our host Amanda Sopkin for her really on-the-nail questions and for directing the conversation, and our organiser Olivia Christian for inviting me and for her support throughout the event!

The webinar panel was live, lasted for 45 minutes and then we had some time for Q&A. There were some great questions and discussions over the LeadDev slack channel as well.

Here is a bit more insight into the event-

The world of software testing is changing under the pressure of ‘speed to market’. The pressure to quickly get products to market means we are starting to see a significant shift towards automated tests during development. This will likely cause socio-technical complexities for orgs and teams currently involved in testing.

In order to be successful through these changes, orgs will need to have a clear strategy and processes in place that will ensure testing is a vital part of the delivery process. In this new age of testing, how can engineering leaders prevent pitfalls such as friction between teams, a culture of blame, and outdated processes?

In this panel, we examined how shift affects traditional testing set-ups, covering what a healthy testing culture looks like and how to avoid the anti-patterns that lead to uncommunicative teams and project bottlenecks. We explored how engineering teams can best work together and how to encourage a shared vision of quality and the importance of efficient and effective tests.

Key takeaways

  • Define clear roles and responsibilities for quality and testing in your org 
  • Encourage QA to be seen as necessary, rather than inhibiting release times 
  • Understand which tests to automate, and which to not

About LeadDev

LeadDev is a community of software engineering leaders that come together to learn and get inspired on all things team, tech, process, and personal development. 

LeadDev has become an essential destination for anyone in tech and engineering who wants to scale themselves and create impact. They provide a range of content that includes articles, thematic content series, video talks and panel discussions, written and delivered by the best voices in engineering.You can register a free LeadDev.com account to gain access to our free engineering leadership content, free online events and our weekly email newsletter. 

10 Lessons When Moving from Waterfall to Agile

Many organizations take up the transition from waterfall to agile with the best intentions in mind. Like so many other companies, you might also be seeking to replace your traditional waterfall processes with agile in a quest to shorten the time-to-market and deliver high quality applications.

The road to agile, though, can be a rocky one! That’s why, in my latest refresh post for Ranorex blog, I have put together a few lessons and tips that will help you in succeeding in moving from waterfall to agile successfully!

The article was published at https://www.ranorex.com/blog/10-lessons-when-moving-from-waterfall-to-agile/

Here is a quick list of lessons we dive into-

1: Embrace the agile culture first

2: Adapt roles and responsibilities

3: Take a whole-team approach

4: Test early and often

5: Remember that agile is iterative

6: Encourage transparent communication

7: Make test automation your friend

8: Commit to early feedback and re-planning

9: Include the whole organization in the agile transformation

10: Adopt tools to enable team collaboration

Check out the complete article to read in detail about each of these learnings that can help you succeed in your agile transformation.

Cheers

Nishi

Read Along- ‘Agile Testing’ Chapter-3

“Cultural Challenges”

This chapter is dedicated to talking about organisational problems with agile adoption, mostly from a cultural point of view- how people perceive changes, how they work, giving up control and also taking charge. It is a very comprehensive description of many problems we see on a daily basis at our work and in teams struggling with agile transformation.

Points to remember and Quotable Quotes

  • Agile teams are best suites for organisations that allow independent thinking.
  • Fear is a powerful emotion, and if not addressed, it can jeopardize the transition into agile
  • Testers who don’t change their approach to testing have a hard time working closely with the rest of the development team
  • If the organisation culture is to push towards release without caring for quality, the teams will face an uphill battle in working in agile
  • Companies where testers assume the role of ‘Quality Police’ will also have a challenge since teams will not buy-into the idea of building quality in, as they are accustomed to badgering it in later.
  • If your organisation focuses on learning, it will encourage continuous process improvement and will likely adopt agile much more quickly.
  • Testers need time and training, like everyone else learning to work in agile
  • To help testers adjust, you may need to bring in an experienced agile testing coach to act as a mentor and a teacher.

Agile focuses on working at a sustainable pace, all the time. In contrast to the ‘fast and furious’ testing done at the end of release cycles in traditional projects (often amounting to overtime). In agile, if overtime is required, it is an exception, and that too for the whole team and not just the testers.

  • In agile, the relationship between the customer and the development team is more a partnership than a vendor-supplier relationship.
  • Even if an entire company adopts agile, some teams make the transition more successfully than others.

About Introducing Change-

“Expect and Accept Chaos as you implement Agile Processes.”

Find the areas of most pain, determine what practices will solve the problem so that you can get some immediate progress out of the chaos.

  • The critical success factor is whether the team takes ownership and has the ability to customise its approach
  • Celebrate success- Acknowledgement is important if you want a change to stick.
  • Rather than managing the team’s activities at a low level, managers of agile teams focus on removing obstacles so that team members can do their best work

“Agile development might seem fast-paced, but the change can seem glacial”

Beware of the Quality Police mentality— Be a collaborator, not an enforcer

The highlight of this chapter for me was reading the ‘Testers Bill of Rights’

I had not heard about this before , so reading this was pretty cool, and for sure fundamental to any tester’s life. Check it out-