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Isha gained valuable QA experience in the UK’s largest online fashion retailer and grew within an environment which encouraged learning, experimentation and continuous improvement. She established new practices like BDD, ATDD within the organisation and team. It was time to move on and build on those successful achievements in a new organisation, where there was a need to establish a culture of QA from scratch. She joined an exciting fast-paced dynamic start-up which excels in providing digital health service. Being a delivery focussed start-up, QA was non-existent. The goal was to establish modern QA practices without impacting delivery. However, it wasn't an easy ride despite being armed with valuable knowledge.
Being a first time speaker, her motivation behind this talk is to share how you establish modern QA practices in a delivery focused and ever-changing organisations like start-ups; where budgets are tight with loads of technical debt, where failure is almost guaranteed if you don’t break the rules. The key to establishing a successful QA function in such a dynamic environment is not to attempt a big bang change by introducing new advanced QA processes. An iterative approach is required. Understanding what needs to improve in the existing QA function, to begin with, bringing people along and explaining the ‘why’ is important. Solving simple little problems helps in building trust, for example, the developers found it hard to release to production, so an emphasis on the deployment pipeline helped.
What should people expect to take away from this:
- Taking an iterative approach when introducing a change by focussing on a problem and making small wins is critical.
- Building quality assurance, TDD, BDD, ATDD in a dynamic fast pace startup by stabilising the QA function first, by fixing the culture, communication and collaboration, before making changes.
- Automation is fundamental when it comes to quality assurance. How to establish automation in fast paced environments where requirements change frequently.
- It’s all about having that balance what to automate and when to automate. Knowing different levels of testing (unit, integration, component, SIT) and adding tests to these levels will increase the quality coverage across the code.
- Talk about growing with the organisation and addressing new and exciting challenges around establishing a QA function in a squad framework, when you have chosen to accelerate change.
- Validating the changes that you have made while establishing Quality Assurance and improving as you go along.
- If it doesn’t work, don’t be afraid to change it. Learn from your failure and move on.
- How QA can get involved at the beginning of the SDLC and reduce risks, save time and money.
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Isha has over ten years’ experience in the software industry, with a background in development and currently hold a position as Lead QA for an online digital healthcare provider Push Doctor.