Testing Services Companies: Understanding Operational & Organizational Context
Like many others, you might have realized, from time to time, that you do not actually understand what tasks testers really can accomplish. Sometimes seasoned testers, having read books and articles about “conducting testing right”, shrug their shoulders, saying; “I cannot believe that these people are doing all these stupid things!” A famous computer scientist, on the issue of the understanding possible problem-based situations, wrote insightfully in “The Secrets of Consulting” that things are the way they are since they became that very way … At one time there were serious and sufficiently sound reasons for making decisions that now seem ridiculous. The scientist’s statement applies to all who first get involved in an existing activity with the intention of influencing, changing, or simply understanding how it works. Testing services companies are recruited by businesses of all sizes to help them to ensure that they develop marketable software applications.
So, if you have found yourself in a situation that seems to be rational or otherwise unreasonable what should be done to channelize your efforts in the right direction?
A context-discovery process
It is believed that the stages of this process take place in parallel and that each stage usually needs to be repeated several times. Outsourced testing is associated with reduced number of test cycles and lowered development costs.
- Understand the life cycle processes used within your company to design, maintain or deliver the system, including any planned or ongoing process improvement initiatives.
- Review all quality-related, test-related, testing documentation, data, metrics and measurements, including existing test plans, defect reporting databases, test systems, field failure data and so on. Understand who developed all these artifacts, why they did so, why they did it that way and what was going on in the company that led to those forces and decisions that had influence on the results.
- Discuss with other project participants what testing activities they are involved in and what they are going to do next, given that you are also a member of the testing team and therefore you are on the scene.
4. Identify your match-level stakeholders in the testing process. Have a word with them to understand the relationship with those who are running tests now, their expectations from the testing process, previous disappointments with the testing process, conflicts with persons who participate in testing, etc. Performance testing service is what you need to correct behavior of your software product and make it work as it should.