I recently had a couple of weeks with a few activities related to “Agile Testing”. “Agile Testing” for those not familiar with it is the name we give to the set of thinking guidelines, principles and practices that help run the testing aspects of product development/maintenance in a more effective way under an Agile delivery approach.
A question that came up while presenting the concepts today at a client was “What’s broken? Why do we need this?”. While my presentation covered some of the rationale the question made even more clear (not that I needed any convincing…) that the guided evolutionary approach to improvement is a winner. If they don’t yet feel the need/pain there is a lower chance they will do something about it.
The question comes up – why don’t they feel the pain? Or alternatively, maybe they feel the pain but don’t associate it with the need for “Agile Testing”.
So I wanted to briefly touch on a few questions/indications that you might need to pull ideas from “Agile Testing” as your next improvement step.
Some indications you might need to look at “Agile Testing”
You applied WIP Limits and testing is becoming a bottleneck. Not once or twice, but quite consistently.
You agreed to include test automation as part of the “Definition of Done” and you are seeing a queue building up meaning the automation is slowing the entire process down, creating significant slack for the people NOT doing automation.
You find a lot of defects which send you to rework technical design due to lack of mutual understanding of the functional requirements / stories, or you find yourself leaving things ugly since there is no time to do the rework – earning you some customer feedback that you are not really providing high quality deliverables.
You are not able to run a very granular flow – everyone claims smaller stories are not useful since the overhead to deliver them to testing and test them is so high. Let’s just keep using bigger items and deliver to testing not more than every 1-2 weeks.
People feel that the test automation approach you have now doesn’t cut it. The total cost of ownership / lifetime costs are very high, and even though people understand the need to have automated coverage in order to integrate often, they are very frustrated by the costs.
Testers are confused. Do they need to be automation specialists? Domain experts? Technical experts? Supermen? In this Agile Whole Team approach where there is flexibility and collective ownership – what is their unique value? what should they focus on?
My latest presentation touches on some of the reasoning why these issues come up when going Agile, as well as introduces how “Agile Testing” can help. For more about this you are welcome to join me at one of the upcoming Agile Testing workshopsAgileSparks runs in Israel and Europe. Contact us for more information.
I’m proud to be on the speaker roster for Scrum Gathering Atlanta this May. I will be talking about why I think Continuous Improvement is broken and share thoughts, tips and examples from the field of how to fix it:
Avoiding Stalled Improvement Programs – WHY Improvement is broken and HOW to make Continuous Improvement more appealing to Management? Yuval Yeret WHY do many change programs take off with great energies only to stall mid-flight when they run out of management attention/interest fuel? Something is broken in the way the improvement cycles scale in the organization. We will recall WHY Continuous Improvement across the organization is critical to sustainable agility and HOW to make it stick using Focus and Integration into the management routine, as well as WHAT you can do tomorrow in your organization to drive towards a more healthy improvement program.
I’m excited to be talking in an international Scrum conference for the first time. As most blog followers know I’m known more as a Kanban practitioner/thinker, but am trying to bring the two worlds together. One of the ways I’ve been trying to do that is to introduce people familiar with Scrum to the Kanban Method so they can add it to their arsenal rather than be afraid of it.
AgileSparks decided to take the opportunity that I’m already in Atlanta with lots of people coming to the Scrum gathering as well as several clients of ours who have big offices in the area, and we are opening our Kanban Training on the 10-11 of May just after the Scrum Gathering ends. This training includes a ScrumBan case study as well as comparison of Scrum and Kanban and some tips how to leverage the best of both. It is also an Accredited Kanban Training as part of the Lean Kanban University Accredited Kanban Program.
Whether you are visiting Atlanta for the Scrum Gathering or local to the area and interested about this new evolutionary approach to improving how technology maintenance/development organizations deliver value, I invite you to join me on May 10-11 for an exciting two days filled with fresh ideas, exercises, and many actionable practices you can try back in the office the day after. Check out the workshop information page and let us know if you’re interested.
I’ll be running our first Accredited Kanban Training workshop on March 21-22 in Herzelyia, Israel. This is our highly-praised Kanban training which has been fine-tuned in the last months to align with the LKU Standard Curriculum. As a student in the class this means you are getting a high quality Kanban Curriculum aligned with the leaders of the community, from an accredited trainer recognized in the community…
I decided to get back to Prezi as an alternative to Powerpoint. Its capabilities seem to be a good match for my kind of materials – Visuals of boards, charts, etc. where you want to zoom in on details, show flows, etc.
A specific opportunity is coming up that is making that even a better idea, so I finally took the plunge 2 years after my last real use of Prezi I dove in again. So much fun, spiked with a few frustrations on missing features. But being a Lean coach, and someone talking about Lean Startups, I can recognize effective MVP (Minimum Viable Product) when I see it. The iPad viewer app is one… (don’t expect it show PDFs just yet 😉