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Kristian Fischer - Put Test in the Drivers Seat

Kristian Fischer - Put Test in the Drivers Seat

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Published by: Andries Poepjes on Feb 26, 2012
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05/10/2015

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© PA Knowledge Limited 2008. Put Test in the Driver's Seat - EuroSTAR November 2008Page
1
 
Put Test in the Driver’s Seat –
Apply a Test ManagementDashboard
Kristian Fischer,Kristian.Fischer@PaConsulting.comPA Consulting GroupTuborg Boulevard 5DK-2900 HellerupDenmark EuroSTAR, November 2008
Abstract 
This article describes why test managers and testers have to change their attitudes andtransform themselves into winners, not victims. Furthermore, it explains how a simpleone page test management dashboard with a handful of selected KPIs enables testmanagers to predict delays and use tactics to avoid them. The dashboard also providesdaily progress information to enable stakeholders to make key decisions bringing the test
team to be where they want to be in the future……In the driver’s seat
.
 
© PA Knowledge Limited 2008. Put Test in the Driver's Seat - EuroSTAR November 2008Page
2
 
Put Test in the Driver’s Seat –
Apply a Test ManagementDashboard
Test managers are too often the victims rather than the victors. Traditionally they havebeen considered the black sheep of projects, who:Raise problems without providing solutionsFind issues which cause deadlines to uncontrollably slip to the right andAlways moan about not having enough time or enough (and clear) requirements.Unless we see a shift in attitude from a reactive recovery to a proactive deliverymentality, test managers will continue to be victims, and IT projects will continue to fail.So how do we create this test manager transition from self-pitying victims to victorssecuring project success in the future?
No more Mr. Black Sheep 
A test manager is not a test manager anymore.
The test manager’s respo
nsibilities aregrowing in numbers, and the test manager must now bridge the gap between IT and thebusiness, support requirements creation, secure alignment with business processes andthe solution, and secure that the final result meets the standards expected. In other words,the test manager needs to be able to embrace a wide variety of areas within the project
 – 
 areas which typically have not been within test manager scope.No more Mr. Black Sheep. It is time to settle the score. The test manager needs to step upto the challenge and:Move away from the line of fire andtransform them into what is needed at thatspecific time in the project. And why notbegin at project start-up?Be proud of what they are. And makeeveryone know that. The attitude has tochange!Apply a test management dashboard. It willcreate value for the project and make the testmanager and the rest of the project proud.
Transform / moveAttitudeApplydashboard
 
© PA Knowledge Limited 2008. Put Test in the Driver's Seat - EuroSTAR November 2008Page
3
 
Move away from the line of fire 
Instead of waiting for the development teams to start providing testable code, testmanagers should actively join the project at start-up. They have to move away from theheat
 – 
away from the end of the food chain and towards the delicious starters. Themindset needs to move from reactive recovery to proactive delivery.With the right mindset and setup, this will:Support requirements creation - test managers will know if the requirements aretestable, and if not
 – 
how to make them testable. Furthermore, they will know thequality of requirements before any code has been developedSecure alignment with business processes and software solution
 – 
by being part of the project form beginning to end, test managers will have first-hand knowledgeon the business processes and requirements and the final solution. Anydiscrepancy will not go unnoticedProvide early testing benefits - early testing will provide valuable information onwhat works and what does not. It also helps find the earliest acceptable system(EAS)Provide early warnings of delays - early testing will find defects early, and thismay reveal warnings of delays.
You are what you are proud of 
It is not enough to engage in the project from the beginning to end. For test managers tosucceed in these tasks, there is a need for a shift in attitude from all project participants
 – 
 from project owner to project members to test managers. For the sake of test managers,testers and the project. There are several ways to help change the attitude.One is for management to acknowledge the work done and value created by testmanagers and testers. Test should become a strategic tool in every organisation that dealswith IT. The management should furthermore emphasize to the organisation that test nolonger is a place for amateurs, who think 
test is “something everyone can do” or 
whocannot find other parts of the project to work in. Test has professionalized, and perhapseven in such a degree that test managers are often more capable of their work than projectmanagers, who still seem to struggle to get rid of the amateur helmet.Another is - as mentioned above - for test managers to engage in more than just theobvious test
stuff 
in projects. If test managers stay at the end of the food chain, thingswill not taste any better. But if test managers start to show their expertise, knowledge andprofessionalism across the project, the attitudes will inevitable change.Applying a test management tool has proven to help change the attitude and show thevalue test and test managers create in and for the project.

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