F11-304: Testing Agility without Agile: A Toolkit for Managers

Track: Test Process

Is testing agility and testing in an agile lifecycle the same? At Vistaprint, code is released to production every three weeks and managed through a workflow of nearly 1000 tickets. The technology team does not follow a specific Agile methodology but is very agile, to ensure that new features are delivered with quality to its 10 million online customers. The team develops software where different features are enabled for different customers by web session, to evaluate and finalize which to deploy based on customer preference. In addition, the software is modular where entire pieces of functionality can be turned off, if need be, and released to production. Assuring that all key functionality works as specified, given the three week cycle and the complex software, presents significant challenges. At Vistaprint, the QA management team uses a set of best practices to ensure testing agility. Join Harish and Julie as they present the toolkit that they use and learn how to apply them to manage testing in very fast-paced environments. The toolkit includes the following: co-located business, development and QA teams; integrated capacity planning using a six month horizon; a QA project execution process that stresses early engagement followed by a test strategy deliverable to plan testing and eliminate defects early; a streamlined ticket workflow to manage test progress; systems that quickly detect issues in the test phase and those that missed the test phase; regression automation that is executed and triaged daily; metrics that help assess risk throughout the release cycle; supported by a culture of empowerment to affect change and systemize whenever possible.

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Session Speakers:

Harish NarayanHarish Narayan – Technology Director, Vistaprint
Harish Narayan is a software engineering and information technology leader with over 15 years of experience and is currently focused on quality assurance and automation at Vistaprint. He is. He has expertise in building and leading world-class quality functions, and in championing enterprise-wide process and capability improvements. He is passionate about instilling a culture of quality in technology organizations and has been a proven business partner in diverse industries including financial services, telecommunications, enterprise software and consumer products. He also brings years of strategic planning, global operations, project management, performance management and team-building experience.

Julie DavisJulie Davis – Director of Quality Assurance, Vistaprint
Julie Davis began her quality assurance career in 2000. Prior to that, she received a Masters in Engineering from MIT with a thesis focusing on early phases of a product’s lifecycle. Her professional experience includes quality assurance responsibility over a broad array of systems: from distributed desktop applications to financial services and most recently of ecommerce systems. Julie is currently a director of quality assurance at Vistaprint. Her team is responsible for the quality of applications that help Vistaprint market their products, generate orders and keep customers engaged – the primary supported application being the Vistaprint website itself.