In this post I’d like to briefly introduce you to an entirely new Sogeti software testing project. Since the beginning of 2012 I have been the international project lead in a team developing ‘PointZERO®’. As you know, the majority of testing conducted today takes place at the end of the software development lifecycle. A key part of PointZERO is to help our clients shift their quality measures earlier in that lifecycle, or left along the timeline. This is why we’re calling this part of the initiative ‘Shift Left’.
The overall project revolves around the concept that it is cheaper, faster and simply better, to get quality measures established at the start of the lifecycle, and as far as possible, to do everything right the first time. Our initial challenge was to assess the current state of play thoroughly and analyse where client pain-points currently exist in their development lifecycles. We have been studying what can go wrong and where, what the best-case scenarios would be, and what steps we then need to implement as early as possible in order reach those ideals.
Right now we are populating an ideal list of all measures that can be initiated at the front-end of each project, and filling in as much detail as possible as we go. For example, we want our clients to be able to run reviews and inspections at the very start of their development cycles, and so we need to educate them and support them in making this Shift Left. We also want to clearly present the tangible problems these shifts will overcome, and the clear business benefits of front-loading software testing in the development lifecycle. We will then use models to automate test specifications, and establish quality gates as collaboration points to ensure we move from one to the next with clients as smoothly as possible.
In my next post I will share my knowledge on the history and inspiration behind the PointZERO Project and the Shift Left concept. In subsequent posts I’ll expand on the explicit tracks we have already identified during the pilot phases of our PointZERO project and how we intend to explain the Shift Left approach to software testers and QA specialist unfamiliar with the concept, before discussing some thoughts on the issues surrounding the successful adoption of fresh organisational principles.