Brian Rock, director of quality assurance at Spredfast, recently led a web seminar on how to test successfully in an agile environment. During the web seminar, Brian shared ten tips vital to being a successful agile tester. Here’s a peek at some of the tips he shared.
1. Understand product architecture – Simply put, this means you need to understand exactly how data flows through an application. This allows you to test the impact of sub-system component failures and to address potential security vulnerabilities. As a result, when defects are found, an agile tester will be able to help developers fix the issues quickly and thoroughly.
2. Understand business objects and context – Since testing should always align with customer context, an agile tester must understand how the end-user will interact with the product. If you focus on the applications and scenarios that provide value to the end-user, you will be able to dimensionalize your testing strategy. This means: If you can divide up a product based on the product architecture and customer context, you will be better equipped to test for potential issues that could negatively impact end users.
From the customer’s viewpoint an added benefit of dimensionalizing the product is that the tester will be able to tag defects with the affected business objects. That way when you begin to review your test sets, you will be able to recognize areas with higher instances of defects. This will allow you to address the issues in a more focused and effective way.
3. Test document requirements – Many agile organizations use some variant of Scrum or kanban, in which there is an element of work tackled by a team to ensure that all aspects function as intended. In order to do this, the team needs to create test scenarios. The acceptance criterion of these test scenarios often becomes a requirement repository over the long term. While some people view the written test scenario as a waste, Brian Rock contends that these test scenarios become very valuable to the agile tester for future automation, regression testing, and product analysis.
4. Know that change is constant – Perhaps this is a bit cliché, but a static product is a dead product. As an agile tester you should be able to give a quality assessment of the product at any stage in its lifecycle. If you are able to do this, you will be better equipped to handle the ever-changing landscape that is agile.
Find the other six tips on the uTest Software Testing Blog.
Jessica Fleet is a uTest community management associate. She spends her days working with uTest’s team of 60,000+ global testers—answering questions, encouraging interaction, promoting education, and generally cultivating the uTest community.