Test Management Forum 25 April

The 33rd Test Management Forum took place on Wednesday 25 April 2012 at the conference centre at Balls's Brothers, Minster Pavement.
The meeting is sponsored by SQS UK, Thinksoft Global and Intechnica Performance Academy and is, as usual, FREE to attend.

A B C
Jeremy Gidlow, MD Intechnica, How to speed up your app by 250% and get from 49th fastest to 8th in two years - the Asos story Richard Neeve, Crowd-sourced Testing: Does it have legs? Ben Fry, SQS, The Quality Initiative
D E F
Alan Wallet, ING Direct, Are we in a new phase regarding Test Tools? And if we are how should Test Managers deal with it? Susan Windsor, Gerrard Consulting, Gold Fish Bowl discussion – topics selected by forum attendees Nikhil Nashikkar, ThinkSoft Global, Moving up the value chain : Why Shared Service Test Center is beneficial over Testing Center of Excellence


Timetable
13.30pm Tea/Coffee
14.00pm Introductions
14.15pm Sessions A, B, C
15.30pm Tea/Coffee
16.00pm Sessions D, E, F
17.15pm Drinks Reception


SESSION ABSTRACTS

Nikhil Nashikkar, ThinkSoft Global, Moving up the value chain : Why Shared Service Test Center is beneficial over Testing Center of Excellence

Shared Service Center (SSC) is a more mature and enhanced concept when compared to a Testing Center of Excellence (TCoE).
TCoE concentrates on resource optimization and consolidation. SSC integrates the concept of continuous improvement as the basis and delivers additional benefits – greater operational efficiency, lower cost of ownership, and improved coverage and quality metrics – while still optimizing and consolidating.
TCoE focuses more on tactical business drivers like risk management, improves control, and delivers more with the same or less effort. SSC combines both the tactical and strategic business drivers and aims to achieve improved service levels, process improvements and standardization, better knowledge management and governance.

The presentation will cover concepts of the two models and conclude with benefits of SSC.

Jeremy Gidlow, MD Intechnica, How to speed up your app by 250% and get from 49th fastest to 8th in two years - the Asos story

In a challenging commercial climate, online retailer ASOS.com have continued to grow as an eCommerce success story. Intechnica MD Jeremy Gidlow will outline how ASOS.com implemented application performance management best practices and fuelled business growth by speeding up their website by 250%, and becoming one of the best performing sites on the web.

Alan Wallet, ING Direct, Are we in a new phase regarding Test Tools? And if we are how should Test Managers deal with it?

It is possible to identify two main phases in our use of Test Tools:

  1. The era of propriety test tools - When Mercury were the leading player and almost all Test Managers bought their test tools from Mercury, or Compuware, or somebody else BUT the main point was that they bought the tools.
  2. The Open Source test tool phase – When most Test Managers rowed back from propriety test tools and moved to use Open Source test tools with really good tools like Selenium, Fitnesse and TestLink attracting large user bases. However, this has a series of challenges especially for Test Managers of medium sized test teams – it is easier for large test teams to have the technical skills that are required for many open source tools.

However, my hypothesis is that we are now in a third phase. I would characterise this by the emergence of smaller test tool vendors who provide excellent support to their very good tools, in contrast to the vendors from Phase 1 who now provide no support. I can give three instances that illustrate my hypothesis:

  1.  Cyara who provide Cruncher
  2. Odin who provide Axe
  3. Facilita who provide Forecast, and I might be adding Inflecta who provide Spira Test

    Discussion:
    It would be interesting to see what views this hypothesis elicited and then discuss how Test Managers should deal with this.

Richard Neeve, Crowd-sourced Testing: Does it have legs?

Up until six months ago my interest in the burgeoning topic of crowdsourcing and specifically crowdsourced testing had been merely academic. But since then I’ve managed a client’s full-blooded embrace of crowdsourced testing, crowdsourced a name and logo for a startup and worked in a business that has crowdsourcing at its core. Previous TMF discussions on this topic have fallen a little flat and this one may too but I think the lack of concrete experience reports has been a problem. Hopefully I can start to plug that gap by sharing what I’ve learned and trying to respond to the hopes and concerns people may have about using this approach in their own organisations.
This topic was discussed at the Summit in February and was so highly regarded, we’ve decided to run again in April to give others the chance to participate.

Ben Fry, SQS, The Quality Initiative

More and more organisations are relying on technology to establish and maintain a competitive advantage, a move that is seeing IT playing a critical role in helping create a new leaner business model, one focused on improving organisational agility, improving customer satisfaction and reducing costs.
More than every there is a need for organisations to adopt a more holistic approach to Quality that is better aligned to the delivery of business outcomes – a move that will provide a more cohesive approach to removing defects as early in the lifecycle as possible, not only saving time, effort and money, but also enabling organisations to reach extremely high levels of customer satisfaction, engineering efficiency, and quality.
This session will discuss what role Test Management can play in influencing an organisation’s approach to Quality and, in doing so, align Testing to better support the business.

Susan Windsor, Gerrard Consulting, Gold Fish Bowl discussion – topics selected by forum attendees

For those who have not been involved in a Gold Fish Bowl discussion, a few words about the format.

Prior to the Forum, we’ll ask attendees to submit the questions they’d like to feed into the discussion, either to get their ideas over to the group, or to gain the experiences of others attending. Each topic will be given up to 20 mins discussion time, depending on the number of topics included within the session.

At the start, the topic will be shared and the person who submitted will join the panel at the front of the room. There will be four chairs for panel members, and the panel is self selecting. If you want to speak, you need to sit on one of the panel chairs – once you’ve made your point, you leave and return to the audience to leave space for other contributions to the discussion. One of the four chairs will remain empty and the facilitator will decide who leaves the panel if all four chairs become taken.

In addition, there will be a “question” chair. This is for anyone in the session who wants to ask the panel a question but doesn’t feel comfortable with being involved in the panel discussion itself.
This format delivers a lively and ever evolving debate and can be both informative and fun. The facilitator’s role in this format will be to ensure the “rules” are adhered to, the time slots are appropriate and that no one person dominates the discussion.

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