As DevOps continues to change the way software teams work together from start to finish, the industry is rethinking the role of Quality Assurance in the development process. Some QA pros have greeted DevOps with a healthy dose of fear—does all this automation and continuous testing put me out of a job?—and many on the Ops side of the table have begun to question whether or not they even need a QA team any more.
In reality, DevOps is transforming the role of QA. In this approach, it’s more critical than ever before for every member of the team to keep quality top-of-mind. While there’s no replacing your seasoned QA professionals, who have an ever-important role to play in this new world, here are the top three reasons why your entire DevOps team needs QA testing training to operate at maximum efficiency.
DevOps Teams Must Speak a Common Quality Language
One of the biggest challenges of embracing DevOps is getting teams that used to be separate to work together. Integrating every aspect of software development into smaller, continuous cycles requires developers, testers, and operations people to all be more intimately acquainted with each other’s roles. By putting the entire team through QA testing training, you’re helping them to better understand the demands of each step of the process and to anticipate and plan accordingly. For example, if the entire team understands that automated test cases are being built around “user stories” representing different use cases rather than being built around individual features, then developers are more likely to think through their work holistically from the user’s standpoint, rather than treating features as components. Giving the team a level playing field when it comes to the lingo and best practices of testing helps them to more efficiently communicate and deliver a quality product.
DevOps Requires QA Insight Into Users
A big part of the appeal of DevOps is the focus on automating as much as possible to make development and testing quicker and more efficient. And while that is helpful, it also requires a proper insight into the way users will handle the software once it’s deployed—especially when it comes to testing.
QA training can help software teams think from the perspectives of different end users in order to build testing scenarios not around individual features, but around use cases. This helps teams avoid falling into the QA trap of building tests to prove a certain feature works, then continuing with development as long as that feature continues working during future automated tests. By focusing instead on all the ways a user’s story could lead them to a broken feature, every member of the team can more naturally and comprehensively identify bugs and cut them out—before it’s too late and too costly to go back and fix a feature that should have been caught earlier.
DevOps Automation Doesn’t Replace QA Experience
Finally, as DevOps leads teams to think more holistically about quality, a greater need for real QA experience underscores every aspect of development. If, for example, an automated test based on a use case developed by the team results in an error, who will interpret the best path forward? It’s the job of a tester to interpret the results of the tests, help determine a plan of action to rectify that error, and figure out where to focus next. That takes collaboration, which is made much easier when the entire team has been through QA training. Developers who must repair broken code as a result of a test are going to be better equipped to work with testers if they’ve had experience of their own building broken tests and learning how to properly conduct QA reviews. Likewise, QA pros will be more comfortable adapting to a more consultative role guiding the rest of the team if they’re able to speak to the team’s own experience in QA testing.
If you’re interested in empowering your DevOps team towards more efficient QA testing, the training experts at iLAB would love to hear more about your needs to help you determine the right training regimen for you. Our students become ISTQB certified and are held to global standards in testing, enabling them to test faster, improve internal communications, and produce a higher quality product more efficiently. Contact us today to learn more about our Quality Assurance Testing training programs.