Agile and DevOps have brought in efficiency and speed and along with that newer challenges to enforce Quality Assurance.
Software development cycles are now shorter and this poses new challenges to QA teams who must somehow keep up with this velocity. The benefit to a QA organization is demonstrating a shift left, higher productivity, agility and adaptability to improving the story line of the product.
QA in the DevOps Era:
DevOps primarily focuses on collaboration through effective communication between various organisational units that function as silos. For QA and development teams the boundaries between them are eliminated and that helps in improving knowledge sharing and a reduction in the duplication of efforts. The QA process now focuses on elimination of defects and not just finding them.
Early testing – One of the main objectives of testing in DevOps is early detection of defects in the development cycle. This entails very early testing into the project life cycle. The testing can begin from first code developed even if the feature is not complete. The need to create self-improving user stories which are independent to other functions or features being developed.
Test coverage – In DevOps, the focus is to deliver software quickly through continuous integration and deployment. Also, due to rapidly changing requirements, it is possible to miss testing of critical areas of the product. This requires a detailed view and mapping of requirements vis a vis test functions. A QA test management tool can help collaborate better and manage this challenge.
Facilitation of quality – A close interaction between QA team and functional experts as well as product owners to understand the product storyline that matches the outcome that is in sync with the business needs. QA Teams will find themselves isolated and unproductive if they are not involved from initial stages of development. The early involvement makes them real facilitators of quality.
Building verification – DevOps encourages frequent builds and there are more chances of code breaking in existing features, it is not always advisable to go for manual testing. Automation helps to carry out such tests to bring efficiency and avoid duplicity.
DevOps key principles like test first, free communication and collaboration can enable QA teams help quality curve shift left and deliver a quality product faster. Here, testing is a continuous process and it supports in incorporating continuous feedback to enable better quality. If the challenges discussed above are addressed, then QA in DevOps can play a critical role in accelerating development and release schedules.
And to discuss more let’s ‘Team Up’ at our booth at Atlassian Summit 2016 at San Jose convention center from 11 – 13 October 2016.