If you're spinning your wheels trying to forecast all the possible ways your agile QA process can collapse as your organization grows and product(s) become more complex -- cool it. It's impossible to come up with every conceivable thing that could lead to product quality failure.
However, it's still essential to find show-stopping bugs before they reach customers. So what do successful fast-growing teams have in common as they scale their QA process, and how do they avoid creating a bloated, time-consuming and expensive strategy?
CIO of Rainforest, Derek Choy, and Sr. Professional Services Consultant at Rainforest, Jeff Pindea, hosted a webinar where they discussed common pitfalls teams experience as they scale their agile QA processes. These are the 4 common pitfalls successful teams avoid during their company's growth.
This one is super important -- it's worth highlighting. Automated tests should be a part of your QA scaling strategy. Not all of it.
While most teams will find it challenging to scale without any test automation, too much will slow you down and become expensive: keep in-mind automation requires developer resources to script and maintain tests.
The trick to test automation success is understanding when a test case is ready for automation and which test cases are best suited for manual testing. Striking the right balance leads teams to achieve scalable QA test automation success.
There's a notion that automation is the magic solution to scaling QA. Don't get me wrong -- it's a great tool for helping with QA scaling, but keep in mind that automated scripts require technical expertise to write and maintain, and automation isn't always a great fit for every type of test. -- Jeff Pineda
Why you are measuring something is much more important than what you are measuring.
Immature teams often focus on metrics that show how much a team is working, such as number of test cases written, rather than metrics that indicate product quality. Finding metrics that show product quality is key to QA process scaling success.
If you're one of the rare organizations that nailed QA in the early days, it's tempting to stick with it as the company grows. But staying the same while teams and products are evolving and changing is a sure-fire way to collapse your QA success. A QA process -- even a good one -- should adapt with your team as it scales.
Taking an ad-hoc approach to fixing bugs, and trying to fix issues that crop up, isn't a scalable way to do QA. Using a strategic approach to triage is much more effective. Understanding where your team's time is being spent and optimizing for the highest-impact fixes, will help them stay lean and effectively scale processes for product quality success.
To learn more about common QA process scaling pitfalls listen on-demand to Common Pitfalls When Scaling Agile QA and How to Avoid Them. You can also download this free ebook, Agile QA at Scale: Software Testing Strategies for Enterprise Teams, for a closer look at how successful organizations like Google and Facebook have scaled QA effectively.