7 Steps to Integrate Your QA Engineers to Agile

Is your organization struggling to implement Agile QA, even when other teams are using Agile methodologies? Here are seven steps to the Nearsoft approach to integrate Agile AQ into the software development cycle seamlessly.

1. Start Testing at the Start

QA is not something that can be effectively patched on in the middle of a development project. It must be considered from the beginning.

2. Review Test Cases Up Front

Get the whole team together before the coding starts to review test cases. For each, you must consider its priority, risk, preconditions, steps, expected result, and post-conditions.

3. Repeat the Same Sprint

Have a consistent duration for every Sprint. Go the same cycle of planning itt, keeping the team on track through daily Standup meetings, closing the Sprint with a Demo of the progress made, and capping it with a Retrospective.

4. Track Stories and Defects Together

It is a common mistake to think of Stories (i.e., new features) as separate from defects and technical debt. Instead, Agile QA requires that the team has visibility of all the work, not just the new “shiny” new features.

5. Create a Common Understanding of “Done”

Everyone must know when,

  • A Story/defect is code complete. There are no TODOs remaining.
  • Source code is committed on the server.
  • Code has been successfully built with a Continuous Integration tool (e.g., Jenkins).
  • Code is deployed to Testing.
  • The Story/defect is demoed to QA.
  • It was tested and verified by QA.
  • Its status has been updated in a tracking tool (e.g., Jira).

6. Involve the Team in Tracking Defects

Review defects daily. Then the Product Owner, along with the team decides whether to defer it, fix it right away, or if it’s really a duplicate. In any case, the decision is recorded in the tracking tool and made known to the whole team.

7. Identify Test Types

At the beginning of the project the team must decide what types of tests to run (e.g., UI, functional, performance, regression, etc.) Occasionally, a Sprint will introduce a feature that may require a new type of testing (e.g., load, stress).

Agile QA Takeaways

  • Shift from traditional to Agile QA.
  • Update your team’s skills set.
  • Have a consistent process.
  • Tool up for clear communications.
  • Keep all available assets reusable.

This is a brief overview to start shifting your mindset to Agile.

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