Agile testing is a practice that follows the practices of agile development and helps create solutions tailored to customer needs.
In today’s fast-paced software world, quick delivery of the product is often not an option but a necessity. Building software also requires a high level of flexibility in responding to the constantly changing market trends and customers’ demands. The problem is that with traditional project management, a quick change of plans inevitably leads to higher costs or longer project duration. Luckily there are agile methods that allow us to avoid such pitfalls. This refers not only to software development but also to testing processes.
WHAT IS AGILE TESTING?
Agile in software development is an approach that focuses on the people performing their work and their cooperation aimed at delivering the right product to the customer. It is an iterative development process that creates requirements through constant collaboration between the client and cross-functional self-organizing teams. Agile testing is a practice that follows the rules of agile development and helps create solutions tailored to customer needs.
WHAT DO WE UNDERSTAND BY AGILE TESTING PROCESS?
The approach to software testing in an agile environment is not very different from the traditional practices. Still, there are few clear distinctions in the process. First, testing in Agile is not a separate activity but an essential part of the development process which is considered to be a preventative measure. This means that the tests have to be performed much more frequently and in sprints. At the end of each sprint, which usually lasts from one to two weeks, the fully-tested software should be available, which is then delivered to the customer. All issues discovered during the tests are recorded and evaluated in retrospect, which further increases the quality and the test coverage achieved.
It is essential for all relevant tests, such as unit, functional or performance tests, to be planned in advance and implemented at all levels. This helps to detect and fix the problems in a timely manner. It should be mentioned that automating test procedures allows running the tests much more often – like several times a day – and minimizing the feedback cycle.
It is important to use automated regression tests in an agile environment. This type of testing ensures that the new functionality of the product (which is being continuously built) does not introduce new bugs and that the previous functionality works as intended.
One of the most important activities in an agile environment is conducting the exploratory tests. If there are no detailed specifications regarding the software functionality, the testers may have to decide what must be tested. The exploratory testing is all about testers’ skills, experience, and creativity – this allows checking system on the fly, thus find both superficial and profound flaws which can not be predicted.
One more salient characteristic of agile testing is the role of each member of the team which is fundamentally different from the role in the classic approaches to the software development process. In the agile world, all team members, in particular testers, are jointly responsible for the product. On one hand, this means the roles of the team’s members blur, on another – that an experienced tester provides invaluable support for the software creation process.
WHAT ARE THE MAIN ADVANTAGES OF AGILE TESTING?
According to VersionOne’s State of Agile Report, 75% of the surveyed companies adopted agile practices in order to accelerate product delivery, 46% of the respondents chose Agile to enhance the quality of the software. There are many advantages of agile testing methodology, let’s look at some of them:
Better quality of the product
Agile approaches allow delivering better products compared to the traditional approaches due to increased collaboration within the team plus earlier and more intensive testing during the life cycle. Agile methodology helps to take both preventive and corrective measures on time thus enhancing the quality of the software significantly.
Agile methodology sees requirements as a prioritized stack that can change during the life cycle. The agile approach is a highly flexible one that allows you to get feedback about user needs and incorporate changes if needed.
Fast user’s feedback
An Agile approach in development and testing allows you to get feedback directly from the end-users, thus enhancing the quality and features of the product at the right time.
Agile developers and testers work closely together and communicate directly instead of relying on the documentation. This improves the collaboration within the team and allows achieving faster test results.
Shorter work cycle
The effective use of a test-driven development approach and coherent communication in the team allows to shorten the time needed between the detailed specification and validation of the requirements drastically.
Because iterative models reduce the time between defining test requirements and approving results, you can deliver the right product to the market quicker.
Higher investment returns
Agile teams, in particular agile testing team, provide a higher ROI compared to traditional teams. It can be a result of the shorter feedback cycle in agile approaches which reduces the average cost of defect resolution. Also, you can get a greater profit because of bringing the product to the market faster.
If you’ve made the decision to outsource testing, you’re already on the right track. Next step: finding a team.
At the most basic level, your requirements for a software testing outsourcing company will revolve around budget, qualifications, availability, and process management. The right choice will influence the company plans to deliver a new product to the market in a short time. Efficient cooperation will lead to a high level of services and expertise of each remote team member.
How to find a reliable remote company? How to make the right choice? We’ve prepared a short guide for you on what to do to find a good QA company.
CONSIDER OUTSOURCING TO EASTERN EUROPE
An essential factor of working with QA outsourcing companies is their location.
Time zone differences will dictate when and how you communicate.
Overall development culture will determine whether your remote testers gel well with your in-house developers.
Finally, the country’s economy and infrastructure will dictate the cost of working with your outsourcing partner.
Working with partners from Eastern Europe provides the best balance of all three factors.
Costs of testing in Eastern Europe are significantly lower than those in the EU and US, while the QA engineers themselves can sometimes outperform western competitors. All countries in Eastern Europe are easy to travel to, and the time difference is seldom a problem. There are always at least 2 hours of overlap between Ukrainian testing companies and the Silicon Valley, while with Polish companies that overlap is increased to 3 hours.
The most appealing advantage is a big number of IT experts in this location. You will find a solid number of software testing outsourcing companies in Ukraine and neighbouring countries. By the way, Ukraine was recognized as the “Offshoring Destination of the Year” by Global Sourcing Association (GSA) in 2017.
WHAT TO CHECK TO FIND THE BEST OUTSOURCING SOFTWARE TESTING COMPANIES?
Here are the primary steps to choosing a remote QA company:
Check their portfolio: If the company has worked over similar projects that you have, used technologies that you are interested in, you can add it to the list of candidates for further consideration.
Check hourly rates: You will pay more for the QA services if you work with a team from the US than from Eastern Europe. The cost shouldn’t be the only criteria for making a decision but it’s worth thinking about.
Years on the market: If the company has been providing QA services for a few years, you can add it to the list of reliable companies.
Flexibility: It’s good to communicate with the company representatives and find out if they can adapt to changes if they appear. And it’s good to know if there’s a possibility to scale the team up or down depending on the project development flow.
References and reviews: You can read about the chosen companies on sites like Goodfirms or Clutch. You will get good or bad reviews from real clients.
Qualification: Before you start cooperation with any of the QA companies, it’s good to find out if the team has any certificates (for example, ISTQB).
CHOOSE THE TYPE OF COOPERATION
There are several engagement models that outsourcing software testing companies offer. We’ll talk about the most popular ones.
Dedicated team. You expand your engineering capacity with this team. And you have a group of people that is focused only on your project. It means that they work full-time and the team size can scale up with time if required. This type of cooperation is good for long-term projects. Such QA companies can call themselves technology partners.
On-demand team. It’s the best option for short-time projects where you need one or a few QA engineers for a few weeks or months. This model requires thorough planning from your side and dividing the tasks into small chunks for the most efficient workflow. In this case, remote companies can pick up new QAs for every new project.
HOW TO MAKE THE FINAL CHOICE?
A good remote team will offer you a high level of communication. It means you receive answers in a short time and you get a full description of your future cooperation. When you have found a few companies that have qualified and ready-to-work engineers, communication quality can become the thing that will influence your choice.
We’re here to assist you with the search for the best QA company that will deliver high-quality services. We know such teams in Ukraine and we can give you its name. Just drop us a message and let us help you.
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