Distributed Agile Testing: Yes, You Can

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When agile development first gained popularity, agile meant collocated teams, including testers, programmers, analysts, and customers who were expected to perform many functions. As agile methods have spread and expanded, many organizations with globally-distributed teams are facing challenges with their agile deployment. Having worked with many such teams, Janet Gregory has observed ways that testers in agile teams can be very productive while delivering a high-quality software product and working well with the rest of the team. In this interactive session, Janet shares her experiences and offers opportunities for all participants to discuss their specific issues and potential solutions. Whether your distributed team is scattered across time zones, has individuals working remotely from home, or is part of an offshore outsourced project, you’ll take away methods and tools to help develop open communication, deal with cultural differences, and share data and information across the miles.

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Distributed Agile Testing: Yes, You Can

  1. 1. TP PM Tutorial 4/30/13 1:00PM Distributed Agile Testing: Yes, You Can Presented by: Janet Gregory DragonFire, Inc. Brought to you by: 340 Corporate Way, Suite 300, Orange Park, FL 32073 888-268-8770 ∙ 904-278-0524 ∙ sqeinfo@sqe.com ∙ www.sqe.com
  2. 2. Janet Gregory Agile testing coach and practitioner Janet Gregory (@janetgregoryca) is the coauthor of Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams and a contributor to 97 Things Every Programmer Should Know. Janet specializes in showing agile teams how testers can add value in areas beyond critiquing the product. For the past ten years, she has been working with teams to transition to agile development. Janet teaches agile testing courses and tutorials worldwide, contributes articles to leading publications, and enjoys sharing her experiences at conferences and user group meetings worldwide. Find more information at janetgregory.ca or visit her blog.
  3. 3. 13/03/2013 StarEast 2013 Orlando, Florida Janet Gregory, DragonFire Inc. Copyright 2013 With input from Lisa Crispin 1 Twitter: @janetgregoryca janet@agiletester.ca www.janetgregory.ca My experience comes … As a tester, working on co-located agile teams, several distributed teams Coached interviewed distributed teams world wide Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 2 1
  4. 4. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 3 Let’s learn a bit about your experiences - Different cities, same time zone (or 1 hr. apart) Time zones more than 3 hrs difference More than 7 hrs difference More than one continent More than 3 remote teams Others? Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 4 2
  5. 5. 13/03/2013 What are your issues with distributed teams? Don’t forget to consider testing issues… Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 15 - 20 minutes to capture issues Then debrief & share 6 3
  6. 6. 13/03/2013 • • • • Cost savings Mergers & acquisitions Remote availability Lack of expertise in-house 7 • Able to hire the ‘right’ people ◦ Independent of where they live • Leverage time zones to your advantage ◦ Shorten feedback cycle • More diversity Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 8 4
  7. 7. 13/03/2013 • Extra communication efforts • Time zone differences • Dependencies • Less productive Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 9 Instead of saying NO, or being the gatekeeper Be the information provider so business can make the decisions Questions… on limitations / benefits? Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 10 5
  8. 8. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 11 Distributed teams means cultural issues. Many teams just don’t take it into consideration. 12 6
  9. 9. 13/03/2013 Norms & values History, habits Language Interactions Infrastructure challenges Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 13 • Accents • English as a second language • Attitudes – assertive vs. reserved / humble • Saving face 14 7
  10. 10. 13/03/2013 Infrastructure Challenges What we think of as “normal”, may not be for everyone 15 It’s relatively simple for a co-located team to adapt to agile, make the values’ their own, and follow the principles. Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 16 8
  11. 11. 13/03/2013 • Lack of trust • Lack of face time • Splitting work between teams • Collaboration / Communication 17 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 18 9
  12. 12. 13/03/2013 • Give the benefit of the doubt to team members • Think constantly of distributed teams members • Extend help to others Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 19 Get entire team in one place ◦ At the start of the project ◦ Regular intervals (if possible) • At a minimum, individuals spend time in other locations Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 20 10
  13. 13. 13/03/2013 • Divide up work • Use time zones to your advantage • What are some ways to do this? Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 21 Instead of saying NO, or being the gatekeeper Be the information provider so business can make the decisions Questions… cultural & team challenges? Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 22 11
  14. 14. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 23 • Collaboration means ... ◦ Working together to find solutions, etc. • Communication means ... sharing ◦ Ideas, information, decisions, solutions, etc. ◦ Understand the media ◦ Know the audience Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 24 12
  15. 15. 13/03/2013 • Set up communication channels so all team members have access to ◦ decisions made ◦ planning sessions ◦ meeting notes • Lowest common denominator for communication Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 25 • Common orientation • Off –shore teams • Acquired teams • New remote team members Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 26 13
  16. 16. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. Let’s talk about tools & practices for communication & collaboration 27 28 14
  17. 17. 13/03/2013 • Email ◦ Broadcast, individual, follow-up on conversations • Photos – task boards, smart boards • Videos Remember ..... • Emails do not show emotions and can be misinterpreted Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 29 • Telephone • Chat rooms • Wiki • Collaborative automation tools • Mind-mapping tools • Remote pairing: VPN, Skype, instant messaging, desktop sharing Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 30 15
  18. 18. 13/03/2013 • Use video whenever possible ◦ Skype, Google phone, teleconferencing • Put faces on stories and tasks ◦ Physical task boards ◦ On-line systems ◦ Use avatars Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 31 • Dedicated laptop on wheels • Good headsets • Good microphones 32 16
  19. 19. 13/03/2013 Anybody have any other suggestions / stories to share about tools they’ve used successfully? 33 Instead of saying NO, or being the gatekeeper Be the information provider so business can make the decisions Questions… on Tools? Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 34 17
  20. 20. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 35 • Tests provide feedback • Tests show desired behaviour • Developers think about testability • Testers think about the big picture • Multiple skill sets mean better solution 36 18
  21. 21. 13/03/2013 • Keep the feedback cycle short • Remove dependencies early Note: Feature teams are preferable with all team members co-located 37 Picture by Augusta Evangelisti, based on diagram from Elisabeth Hendrickson 38 19
  22. 22. 13/03/2013 How is testing affected when you have feature teams vs. component teams? Generate some ideas about how to split work between teams so that collaboration can happen. Let’s share Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 39 The story: As Amazon marketing manager, I want to offer free delivery options, so that customers will buy multiple items at once. Acceptance: Orders of 5 or more books get free delivery Discuss at your tables, and come up with various examples that might make the story more clear. 40 20
  23. 23. 13/03/2013 The story: As Amazon marketing manager, I want to offer free delivery options, so that customers will buy multiple items at once. Acceptance: Orders of 5 or more books get free delivery Now, exchange the examples with another table. • Do you think that this might work with a remote team? • Would it help clarify what was wanted? 41 • Power of 3 • Pairing • Question • Draw pictures • Repeat verbal conversations in writing 42 21
  24. 24. 13/03/2013 • Continuous integration • Integrate testing and coding • Use common tools ◦ Version control ◦ Test frameworks ◦ Defect tracking Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. Consider operations / maintenance teams for support of tests, code 43 • Share information • Share awareness of dependencies • Keep everyone “in the loop” • Same vision • Same goal 44 22
  25. 25. 13/03/2013 Instead of saying NO, or being the gatekeeper Be the information provider so business can make the decisions Questions… on Key Practices? Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 45 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 46 23
  26. 26. 13/03/2013 • The right support ◦ For self-organizing teams ◦ Extra positions for liaison • Foster a learning culture ◦ Tolerate mistakes ◦ Personal safety • Give time to experiment, to try 47 • Schedules ◦ Overlapping times ◦ Meetings ◦ Share the pain • Use retrospectives ◦ Identify problem areas ◦ Experiment with solutions Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 48 24
  27. 27. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. • Pick one of the challenges from the first exercise • What experiments might you try? • User flip charts, markers, sticky notes... • Prepare to share top experiment with the group Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 25
  28. 28. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. Instead of saying NO, or being the gatekeeper Be the information provider so business can make the decisions Questions… on adapting? Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 52 26
  29. 29. 13/03/2013 Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 53 • Whole team • Small chunks of work • Use your diverse skills • Respect culture: yours and others • Give teams time to experiment, learn • Maintain discipline • Avoid silos – geographical or functional Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 54 27
  30. 30. 13/03/2013 Think of new ways to collaborate and communicate Remote team member 55 Collaborate to innovate or Innovate to collaborate Use retrospectives to improve!! Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 56 28
  31. 31. 13/03/2013 Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams By Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory www.agiletester.ca Contact info www.janetgregory.ca http://janetgregory.blogspot.com/ Email: janet@agiletester.ca Twitter: janetgregoryca Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 57 • Practices for Scaling Lean & Agile Development: Large, Multisite and Offshore Product Development with Large-Scale Scrum, Craig Larman and Bas Vodde, Addison-Wesley, 2010 • Agile Software Development in the Large: Diving into the Deep, Jutta Eckstein, Dorset House, 2004 • Fearless Change: Patterns for introducing new ideas, Linda Rising and Mary Lynn Manns • Agile-testing@yahoogroups.com • Pictures taken on safari in Kenya and Tanzania with Nature Encounters Tours, British Columbia Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 58 29
  32. 32. 13/03/2013 • www.lisacrispin.com • Rothman Consulting Group, Inc. Vol 9, #5: Building Trust in any Team • Version One - State of Agile Development Survey: http://www.versionone.com/pdf/7th-Annual-State-of-AgileDevelopment-Survey.pdf • http://leadingsoftwaretestinginanagileworld.blogspot.co.uk/2 011/03/distributed-agile-test-teams-making-it.html Copyright 2013 DragonFire Inc. 59 30

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