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How to Tackle Quality and Agile at Scale

In past blogs we looked at testing tools for Atlassian like Xray and Zephyr. Our team at GLiNTECH also like QASymphony’s tool and invited the company to write about its benefits so that you are aware of them as an option as well. Here is the guest blog, by Kevin Dunne (VP, Business Development & Strategy at QASymphony) introducing our readers to QA Symphony.

Given today’s interconnected world, quality is of utmost importance to today’s leading enterprises, who are subject to intense scrutiny over bugs discovered in their various applications.  Additionally, the pressure to deliver software quickly increases as large enterprises stay competitive with smaller, more agile entrants to the market.  With the stakes higher than ever, customers are looking for a modern platform that can meet the testing needs of today’s agile enterprises.  Many customers find that today’s leading agile solutions (such as How to Tackle Quality and Agile at Scale) are focused on improving the daily experience of the developer, but there are not many that focus on the needs of the tester.

Within the market today, the solutions testers are forced to choose between are divided into three major categories:

  1. Legacy solutions: tools like HP Quality Center which are popular in the largest enterprises and include full functionality, but lack good agile workflow support and integration to popular agile development tools like JIRA
  2. Emerging point solutions: tools like Zephyr for JIRA or TestRail which support many of the smaller and mid-market agile teams but lack the robust features required by larger enterprises
  3. Excel and Open Source:  teams of all sizes are investing in building and customising their own tools to meet their internal needs, but to invest in an enterprise-ready custom solution will often sacrifice several developers that could refocus their effort on customer facing projects

At QASymphony, they have been aware of the lack of viable solutions that can meet the demands of agile at scale.  Since 2011, they have been focused on building the wealth of features required by the agile enterprises they work with a new approach focusing on major trends they see in this growing customer segment:

  1. Improved agile workflows: adapting previously siloed processes into a more integrated, iterative process that is based heavily in collaboration and transparency between teams

  2. Real-time Integration to agile ALM’s: centering popular agile development tools like JIRA as the system of record for all things agile planning, tying in our test management capabilities with a unique real time integration

  3. Best-of-Breed Automation: departing from the traditional vendor locked solutions that HP and other legacy vendors provide, opening up out-of-the-box integration to many popular best-of-breed and open source automation tools

  4. Complete Data Migration: moving from the most popular legacy systems like HP QC requires a complete, standardised migration solution encompassing all objects (requirements, test cases, test results, defects) as well as the linkages between them and customised fields and statuses

  5. Flexible Platform: providing solutions for teams across the enterprise practicing models from agile to DevOps with support for automated, manual, and exploratory testing with centralised reporting and analytics

    qTest Insights

    qTest eXplorer

  6. Best-in-Class Experience: ensuring top-level onboarding, customer support, and deployment options all as part of a single subscription that maximises return on investment and lowers the overall cost of ownership and unforeseen expenses

Though QASymphony firmly believes they have the modern platform that the agile enterprises demand, they do acknowledge that a complete transformation from an established platform to a new solution may be unrealistic.  In working with over 400 customers in the past 3 years, they have aligned their success towards three models of implementation and use:

  1. Complete replacement: for smaller enterprises or enterprises that have made a companywide decision to adopt agile and jettison older tools, they can replace their existing solution entirely and migrate the data completely
  2. Partial replacement: for larger enterprises that still have teams they added to their existing solution, they can provide a project by project partial migration and replacement.  Additionally, they can provide a live migration service that allows teams within the company to work within our solution alongside their existing solution, so data can flow back and forth between both as they validate the capabilities of the new system
  3. Complement without replacement: for the most complex enterprises that are not ready for migration at any scale, they can complement their existing solution with our unique qTest eXplorer offering.  This offering can allow teams to experiment and achieve many of the benefits of an agile transformation without needing to replace the core system responsible for their test case management.

Quality and solid test management continue to be the foundation of successful agile implementations.  As companies at scale adopt agile, they will face exponentially increasing pressures to deliver quality software with a decreasing number of solutions available to support their needs.  Enterprises should be aware that new solutions from QASymphony are available in several engagement models ranging from loose experimentation through complete migration and replacement.  You can take a free 14-day test drive at qasymphony.com