Robert Gormley, SWAT Solutions
The advent of the mobile world has placed product quality and customer satisfaction squarely on the shoulders of the company’s IT department because the speed and transparency of customer feedback in the world of social media means poorly designed or low quality software goes “viral” for all the wrong reasons. The response of the IT community to this challenge has been to rid itself of long-winded iterative software development methodologies like the Rational Unified Process (RUP) or Waterfall. In their place, dynamic, ever-evolving methodologies like Agile and Scrum have begun to dominate the landscape like a ferocious T-Rex because they offer more flexibility in the development process and expedite the time to market. While the adoption of a new development methodology can be difficult on all departments, the transition of the QA Department to Agile is laced with the harsh realities of having to overcome a change to their philosophic core and meeting the challenge of aggressive skill adaptions required for Agile.
Based on my experiences (from skeptical beginner to implementation leader) and supported by research, this paper points out 5 practical keys for making Agile QA more successful for those QA departments already engaged in Agile. These keys may not provide a Rosetta stone for perfect Agile QA but the unique perspectives derived from them may help other practitioners of Agile QA in their march to avoid extinction.