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TMF – July 2010 Getting the Best Results out of Test Support Functions Susan Windsor Tel: +44 (0) 7974 808604 Web: gerrardconsulting.com.

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Presentation on theme: "TMF – July 2010 Getting the Best Results out of Test Support Functions Susan Windsor Tel: +44 (0) 7974 808604 Web: gerrardconsulting.com."— Presentation transcript:

1 TMF – July 2010 Getting the Best Results out of Test Support Functions Susan Windsor Tel: +44 (0) Web: gerrardconsulting.com Slide 1Assurance with Intelligence

2 Where did this topic come from? After 15 + years of “Susan, help us find out what’s wrong with our testing!” – e.g. we spend a shed load of money on testing and still have major faults in production! Can guarantee issues include: – Test environments – Test data – Configuration management Testing is dependent upon these – but they are the poor relations of testing Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 2

3 Why focus on Test Support? On average 60% of major defects in production (as discovered in 5 years of causal analysis) are due to environment or data issues Investment in testing on process improvement may only address 40% of your problems Do your own causal analysis to plan your investment priority Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 3

4 What do we focus on? We expend the majority of our time on direct test activities such as: – Planning preparation and execution cycles – What techniques to use? – Structured and/or exploratory? – What test tools to use, if any? – Have we got the right people with the right skills in place to support testing? All very important of course, but Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 4

5 What about Environments Test Data Configuration Management Test Tools Support Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 5

6 Environments Always a problem! Aren’t they? Testers typically: – Define environment requirements late – Talk in non-technical terms – Don’t ensure they are understood – Moan when they don’t get what they want when they want Environment builders typically: – Also support production so this is 2 nd priority – Don’t ask questions to clarify the requirements – Assume that once the kit is in place, the environment is ready Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 6 Am I being harsh?

7 Test Data Why don’t we have a strategy for test data rather than assume the individual test phases will sort it out for themselves? Can we built it automatically? How representative does it need to be for each test phase? Do we have any privacy or security issues? Your experience? Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 7

8 Configuration Management Typically a weakness for most organisations So, how do we know what we’ve received when we start testing How much time is lost testing against incomplete releases? Do we track that? How do we control our own test assets Your experience? Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 8

9 Test Tools Support Within the project or organisation wide? How much time is lost “getting up to speed” with standards, templates, the tool itself? Do we capture lost time? Can you have a standard approach anyway? What’s in your plan for training/awareness? Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 9

10 In Summary Lets plan for the resources required to undertake Test Support functions, and where they will be located Lets pro-actively build relationships with environment providers now – so that when it really matters we already know how to communicate Lets capture lost time waiting for test support to be delivered Lets do causal analysis to identify (and evidence) our problem areas for investment Assurance with IntelligenceSlide 10


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