There is no doubt that testing Centers of Excellence (CoEs) have transformed quality assurance for businesses around the globe. But times are changing and new pain points are emerging. Even the best CoEs are finding that traditional tools and tried-and-true frameworks simply aren’t keeping pace with modern-day application development.
The disconnect doesn’t mean it’s time for your CoE to be tossed aside. Far from it. Now is the time to make a few smart moves to address this changing landscape. When you do, you can broaden your CoE’s impact and ensure your relevance for years to come.
Let’s start by looking at five of the most prevalent challenges CoEs face today.
1. Technology shifts that impede sharing and reuse
Agile developers are adopting Open-Source technologies and toolsets to support the rapid-fire pace of their work. But most CoEs rely on proprietary platforms that simply aren’t built for Open-Source. As a result, each time QA testers encounter a new development project, they essentially have to reinvent the wheel – from the development environment to the performance testing center. They don’t have a good way to share components, scripts or plans, which creates costly inefficiencies.
2. Testing bottlenecks that lead to undetected performance issues
While it’s true testing has begun to shift left as Agile development teams adopt “early and often” testing practices, most still rely on their CoE for performance testing. But the pace and demand for test resources can be overwhelming, making it hard for CoE test teams to keep up. As a result, defects and performance issues often take a backseat and can go undetected, with poor-quality applications making their way to customers. Your company’s brand image and its bottom line can both suffer.
3. Costly delays in software delivery schedules
QA teams in the CoE lack visibility into the many Agile development projects underway across multiple lines of business, and that can cause trouble. There can be crucial production delays when the right resources aren’t assigned to the right projects at the right point in time. Time-to-market can be lengthened and costs can soar, resulting in some tough tensions between IT and a company’s lines of business, with CoEs in a constant state of flux to bridge the gap.
4. Lack of a QA framework for Agile development.
Agile development teams typically lack the comprehensive quality practices and standards found in a test CoE. Many even miss the simple things like documenting app requirements. As a result, quality issues can go undiscovered until well into the post-production phase, where fixes become more time-consuming and expensive. In addition, the lack of a QA framework impacts performance assurance testing for private cloud environments since Agile development teams lack access to extensible test resources through RESTful APIs.
5. Continuous improvement impeded.
In the absence of an Open-Source ready software test management platform, it is increasingly difficult for CoEs to support a continuous delivery model. Agile development teams themselves simply aren’t set up to perform regular performance assessments or to identify areas, where meaningful improvements can be made consistently. As a result, it is difficult to launch continuous quality improvement initiatives that help Agile development teams aim higher and perform at the top of their game.
It’s time for a paradigm shift.
To address today’s app development challenges and ensure the continued relevance of your CoE, it’s time to broaden your scope – not bury your head in the sand. By making a few simple but powerful moves, you can transform your organization into what we’re calling a Center of Developer Excellence (CoDE).
You’ll be able to resolve the proprietary versus Open-Source debate, eliminate bottlenecks, provide decentralized test coverage for Agile teams across the business, broker the appropriate test resources at the right time, integrate upstream and downstream workflows and processes, and ensure continuous improvements that benefit your development teams and their customers.
Stay tuned for our weekly blogs as we dive in and give you a step-by-step roadmap for the moves you need to make. In addition, tell us what you think about the disruptive forces faced by your test CoE by completing this simple survey. We will email you results of these findings once it is complete.
In the meantime, remember to register for this webinar with Forrester, on February 14 at 8am PST, where we will be talking more on what it means to federate the Test CoE!
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