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The Tester is Dead, long live Testing - XebiCon 2015

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High resolution version can be found here: https://xebicon.nl/slides/edze-knol-jordann-gross.pdf
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Testers have been advocating for more attention to quality in the software development process for years, and luckily not without success. In the age of agile, quality has finally risen higher and higher on the agenda of teams and projects. So much more even that testing no longer seems to be a one-man-full-time job in these teams. Their job is done; they’ve made themselves obsolete. Game over, or isn’t it?

In this talk we are going to explore the evolution of testing and the way testers are adapting within a changing world. We use some models to explain this and it becomes clear that not only the testers, but every team member is undergoing this change.

We see testers in agile teams adapting themselves, learning new skills and expanding their tasks beyond the traditional testing grounds. Agile testers have finally become the ambassadors of quality!
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This was first presented at XebiCon 2015 at the Westergasfabriek in Amsterdam. XebiCon is the agile software development conference for IT professionals, with 8 tracks ranging from Microservices, Datacenter Automation, Test Automation, Internet of Things, Big Data, Continuous Delivery, Agile to Software Development.

Published in: Business

The Tester is Dead, long live Testing - XebiCon 2015

  1. 1. Software Development Done Right 1 The Tester is Dead long live Testing! Edze Knol Jordann Gross
  2. 2. 2 GAME OVER For years testers have advocated for more attention to quality, and not without success! Nowadays everyone is involved in testing. So much even, that testing (in the traditional sense) is hardly a fulltime job anymore. So... have we (testers) made ourselves obsolete, are we game over?
  3. 3. Tester 1.0 3 Before agile software development became mainstream, typically organisations had people work in separated silos. Roughly software development was define > build > test, where testing clearly comes after developing. Thus the Tester 1.0 is separated from the rest of the development team.
  4. 4. Tester 2.0 4 With the uprise of agile, people started working in teams instead of in silo's. It really brought quality and testing to the development process. The tester 2.0 became part of a multi-disciplinary agile development team.
  5. 5. Testing 3.0 5 In high performing agile teams with the right mindset, people tend to let go of strict roles and function profiles. People start picking up tasks beyond their initial scope, as long as it helps the product getting done. In Testing 3.0, the tester is no longer one person, but his tasks are split over the whole team. The tester has become an 'agnostic' engineer, who has a big focus on quality, but is certainly not limited to that alone.
  6. 6. 6 Tester 1.0 Old skool career path Test Test Test We will put it in a model to make it more clear, Old skool career path was pretty linear, you often started in a field of expertise and by grinding over the years, you became better and better at it, until you reached the final stages of your expertise. Looking at the environment and how you're facilitated, this was quite a natural path to take, society might even expect this from you. By the way, this doesn't only go for testing, all the traditional roles are undergoing this journey.
  7. 7. Tester 2.0 7 Test Test DevBA Test ArchUX Getting T-shaped Then agile came along and we started working in teams. We got introduced into other roles, some of which we might not had direct contact with before. This meant people could become T-shaped; they knew what their colleagues were doing and could accomodate their work to facilitate their teammates. This results in less documentation needed and much smaller hand-overs, if any.
  8. 8. 8 Agile Competentie Fractal model - Sid Dane UX BA Arch Dev Test Agile Competence Fractal Model Testing 3.0 If your team has the right mindset and your organisation can facilitate letting go of function profiles, then it can really become a high performing team. Where being T-shaped was about adjusting your work to facilitate your colleague, this is much more about picking up tasks outside of your main expertise. Developing your skills this way means you're much better at collaborating with others to get stuff done. Everybody on your team becoming an engineer with a focus area like this is acctually a very good thing!
  9. 9. 9Agile Competentie Fractal model - Sid Dane UX BA Arch D Test Team of Engineers Test UX Arch - Dev Arch BA Test U Dev Arch UX - - BA Here we see it scaled up with an example of a team. You can fill one in for your own team and replace the skills with the ones which are needed to get your product to production. As you can see this doesn't mean everyone becomes a jack-of-all-trades, but people really become cross-functional. This means they can work as a team to get the most important things done first. Also if one of these guys gets sick or goes on vacation, the team is still going strong, because responsibility of certain tasks can be picked up by the team as a whole.
  10. 10. 10Agile Competentie Fractal model - Sid Dane UX BA Arch D Test Team of Engineers Test UX Arch - Dev Arch BA Test U Dev Arch UX - - BA Also interesting to note is that this pretty compact team is really capable of getting an end-to-end solution out there. All the important skills are covered. For example if you look at Achitecture, enough guys know what they're doing in here. This team won't do absurd things or bring your business continuity in danger. They also know enough to be aware when they lack the knowledge themselves.
  11. 11. 11 Quality is a team value Testing is a team effort Agile quality mindset Reaching this high level of performance is only possible if your team has the right agile mindset. On the field of 'testing' this should be their mantra. Like explained before, comparable shifts are going in in other fields, like business or development.
  12. 12. 12 Here Edze brought the first two parts together by telling how his personal journey from a Tester 1.0 towards an Engineer involved in Testing 3.0 went.
  13. 13. Tester 1.0 13 Test Test Here Edze brought the first two parts together by telling how his personal journey from a Tester 1.0 towards an Engineer involved in Testing 3.0 went.
  14. 14. Tester 2.0 14 Test Test DevBAUX Here Edze brought the first two parts together by telling how his personal journey from a Tester 1.0 towards an Engineer involved in Testing 3.0 went.
  15. 15. Testing 3.0 15 Dev Infra UX BA Test Here Edze brought the first two parts together by telling how his personal journey from a Tester 1.0 towards an Engineer involved in Testing 3.0 went.
  16. 16. 16 For agile testers we see three main areas where their critical view and quality mindset can bring great value. Top left, the business area, where they focus on preparing the features. Top right, the technical area, where they drive the team on testing and checking the product. Bottom, the devops area, where they facilitate the way of working and speed of agile
  17. 17. 17 • Specification by Example - Gojko Adzic • User Story Mapping - Jeff Patton • The Cucumber Book - Matt Wynne & Aslak Hellesoy Business area The business area is about building the right stuff. These engineers focus on getting optimal business value out of the features and creating a common understanding. They use things like BDD, specification by example and can bring techniques like usability testing and A/B-testing to the table.
  18. 18. 18 • Agile Testing - Lisa Crispin & Janet Gregory • Test Driven Development - Kent Beck • Lessons Learned in Software Testing Technical area The technical area is about building the stuff right. These engineers drive the team to keep quality in mind and create awareness about the testing pyramid, which things should be automated and on which level. These use techniques like TDD and can bring performance, security, and other kinds of technical tests to the team.
  19. 19. 19 • Continuous Integration - Paul M. Duvall & others • The Phoenix Project - Gene Kim & others • Continuous Delivery - Jez Humble & Dave Farley DevOps area The devops area is about building the stuff right now. These engineers are facilitating delivering the product to production. Via deployment pipelines and other ways they make sure this happens in a consistent and predictive manner. That way they drive the team to do continuous integration and hopefully continuous delivery even.
  20. 20. 20 Growing towards one of these areas is not hard, but it requires commitment. You can start tomorrow; explore your own fractal or how you would like it to look like, be curious, pair up with your colleague, communicate a lot, help others and let them help you, share knowledge and experience, etc. These areas are just our view on a high level split, there are numerous sub-builds you can fit in.
  21. 21. Software Development Done Right CONTINUE? Insert c in This way we come to the conclusion the traditional tester is dead. It might not be yet in your organisation, but he's definately not here to stay for long. So even if he's not dead yet, he's dying fast. For years testers have tried to get quality higher on the agenda and it seems we've finally succeeded. Instead of being 'testers', they are now >
  22. 22. 22 "We've become the Ambassadors of Quality" VICTORY DANCE! THE AMBASSADORS OF QUALITY!!1!
  23. 23. Software Development Done Right Get started with your organisation jgross@xebia.com eknol@xebia.com
  24. 24. 24 Agile Competentie Fractal model - Sid Dane Secondary skill Tertiary skillPrimary skill Template Agile Competence Fractal

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