Triaged Tester

Shared services within Test Factory solution

Shared services within Test Factory solution

Abstract:

Solution developed with technology and specialist expertise on functional and non-functional testing to deliver truly integrated application lifecycle management solution for almost all domains paired with skills in automation to provide a flexible delivery model of quality services is quite a challenge. By establishing shared services methodology, one can support testing of applications across the enterprise, sharing test environments, leveraging existing investments and maintaining high quality whilst reducing costs. This type of shared services approach can be delivered within the Test Factory solution.

Keywords

Test Factory, Shared services, ROI, Agile, Process model , Adapted Process model, Commercial proposal, Testing Management development, Test planning, Test design, Test execution, Configuration management , Measurement and analysis, Test report

Introduction

With changes in the efficiency in which business software is developed, such as RAD tools, code generators, and agile methods, it has been noted by many organizations, that Software Delivery and Testing is now more costly and time consuming than actual Software Development. Yet as the paradigm for software development has changed rapidly, the traditional model of hiring full time testing staff, to use expensive enterprise testing tools that require expensive infrastructure to work in the same facility as the business stakeholders has not changed.

Application testing however, for many firms is still a mundane style of work. This with high and low cyclical work requirements, firms are still hiring full time staff towards the medium workload and relying on staffing or unmanaged QA consulting firms to supply talented and experienced help for the peak periods. Often during the low periods resources are let go and suffer low productivity from the full time staff. There is however a better way to get productivity from the testing staff 100% of the time – Shared services within the test factory solution.

Process model of a test factory

To build this model a careful consideration of the best practices is made and the different reference models used to improve the testing process are utilized. If one wants to define a good process model the need to know the specific goals and practices related to testing is imperative. In this regard, analysis of all testing activities and outsourcing testing needs to be in order to identify and establish the set of processes. Moreover, an in depth studies of all the artifacts related to both the project and testing is employed to determine the process inputs and outputs. In the process, a set of testing processes that can be grouped in three categories emerges: Management, Technical and Support. First category contains the processes of Testing Requirement Development, Testing Planning, Testing Design. Second Testing Execution and Testing Report and in the third section a set of support processes have been defined, such as: Quality Assurance, Control and Monitoring, Configuration Management, and Measurement and Analysis.

 Each process is defined briefly, including inputs and outputs

Process area Input Output Description
Testing Requirement Development Analysis Document, Requirement Document, the contract between org and the test factory setup Feasibility study and project scope is developed. From there, testing requirements are captured and managed
Testing Planning Analysis Document, Testing Requirement Document Test Plan Test Plan is developed and maintained. This also documents the testing strategy & risks involved.
Testing Design Analysis Document, Design Document, Testing Requirement Document, Test Plan Test Plan, Test Design Specification, Test Case Specification, Test Procedure Specification Establish the necessary information to execute testing effectively and efficiently.
Testing Execution Test Work Package Result Reporting To prepare and execute tests. This process comprises three different processes: Verification Tests, Validation Test and Acceptance Test.
Verification Tests Artifacts to be tested Result Reporting To perform the testing verification activities and to review the artifacts or work product that we receive through inspections, walkthroughs and technical reviews.
Validation Tests Project Documentation and Testing Documentation Result Reporting To execute the testing validation activities to check the system.
Acceptance Tests Requirement Document and Testing Documentation Result Reporting To execute the acceptance tests to check that the system meets the client’s needs.
Testing Report Result Reporting Result Summary Reporting To analyze and evaluate the results obtained and to prepare a brief report which includes the most important results
Quality Assurance Test Work Package Result Audit Reporting To verify that the activities, defined in the current process, have been carried out.
Control and Monitoring Test Plan, Result Monitoring Reporting Result Monitoring Reporting To control and monitor the state of the project. Elements such as schedule, costs, resources, milestones, commitments, risks are taken into account.
Configuration Management Any element involved in the project Information about the change To carry out the configuration and change management and change. Changes in the configuration items on any baseline must follow a formal process of change, which assesses its impact to accept or reject the change
Measurement and analysis Project and Process Specifications Measurement Reporting To control the processes implemented in the organization. Different indictors are defined to allow the measurement and analysis of the information collected.

Proposed model

Test factory is the solution to the industry’s requirement of an enterprise level testing organization. It is a centralized testing group that will serve specific, named software applications for a given customer. It will help in streamlining the testing process and eliminate the risk and uncertainity involved in adhoc testing. Taking advantage of the proven methodologies, prebuilt content and templates, the time to value is accelerated. It is operated on the basis of pre-agreed SLA’s . This shared model helps to optimize the overall team size without impacting the quality of the testing, and will also optimize the overall cost by sharing infrastucture and tools across different applications  teams. Once the test factory is up and running, the services are delivered as per plan and provides additional services such as maintainence , automated script development in a cost effective model

 Benefits

  • Improved efficiency: getting the right skills at the right time. It also helps in maximizing test coverage and depth of testing.
  • Successful project delivery: predictability in timelines simplifies planning and reduces costs. It all starts with quality model. This also doubles as an independent verification and validation service.
  • Standardization of quality Assurance policy: skills transfer , industry best practices and project accelerators
  • Instant time to value: flexible level of resources to support peaks by establishing a software test lifecycle parallel to the development one. Reusable test case repository coupled with strong reporting framework enhances the time to production

Conclusion

There are different ways of testing in organizations – one is having test factories. Research is looking at test factories as a solution to reduce cost and improve software reliability. Only pay for your enterprise testing tools when you are using them. Use facilities that are close to the Business Application owners for input, but leverage low-cost suburban rates. Consolidate all of the testing for a group of firms into a single facility with pre-installed tools (both Enterprise and public domain specialty tools) to improve productivity. Have testing staff that are pre-trained in using the enterprise tools, and also have them up to speed on Testing Best Practices and a common Business Risk Based methodology. This whitepaper elucidates that the process model defines the processes that are required to manage a testing activity, including the definition of deliverables and visibility mechanisms required to manage a testing centric project

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