SOGETI UK BLOG

This week Sogeti attended the National Software Testing Conference 2014 (NSTC14), which was organised and hosted by industry publication, Test Magazine. In the UK, Sogeti works quite closely with Test Magazine, having sponsored their European Software Testing Awards where we were also lucky to have been awarded ‘Testing Innovator of the Year’.

NSTC 14 took place at London’s British Museum – and although we didn’t get to listen to the speakers in and amongst the artifacts, it was nevertheless a stunning venue for Test Magazine’s first conference.

Day 1 kicked off with a warm welcome from the Editor of Test Magazine, Sophie-Marie Odum, closely followed by an interesting Keynote by Borland’s Chris Livesey. During his session, Chris notably likened the Development and Testing lifecycle to a manufacturing supply chain, including Definition, Design, Development, Measurement, Deployment and Improvement, and with similar issues around stakeholders, control and a high rate of change.

Sogeti’s own Agile SME, Daryl Searle took to the floor during the mid-morning Executive Debate to discuss the topic of ‘Agile Maturity’.  Most of the participants had at least trialled agile in some form, but were still facing a number of challenges in their adoption which matches the findings from our recent ‘Agile in Real Life’ webinar. During the session the group, chaired by Daryl, discussed:
 

  • Whether there really is such a thing as agile – does it deserve its own label?
  • The importance of involve stakeholders at all levels, and at all stages in the process
  • The need for some level of documentation and control is needed, despite claims in the manifesto around ‘working software > comprehensive documentation’
  • That ‘agile is like a box of tools’ and hybrid, tailored agile approaches that use the best bits from each agile approach (i.e. SCRUM, KANBAN) – and even some non-agile approaches -seem to be most effective
  • How the role of the tester changes – if at all
  • And much, much more…

What are your thoughts on these points? Let us know!

On Day 2 we heard from Ghulam Khan, Head of QA and Localisation at SEGA, who discussed ‘The Challenges Faced in Testing Interactive Entertainment Applications’,  including the increasing range of devices, challenges in automation, and the qualities they look for in their Gaming testers. This was a great session, not least because we got a sneaky peek at the new Aliens trailer!

We also attended a session hosted by Microsoft’s Paul Twidell and Bethan Lindly which explored the difference between testing on mobile devices vs. on web and desktop. Clearly highlighted was the need to test thoroughly across different devices and platforms, while the pair also stressed the importance of User Experience and performance for mobile applications; pointing out a number of implications for testing such as consistent error messages, touch targets and CPU/battery usage and the tools that can help in these areas.

There were many topics discussed on the day but there’s just a few that continue to jump out at us when we attend events like the NSTC. These are: agile; mobile; cloud; automation; and, increasingly, the changing role of the tester.

In addition to learning a lot, we also had great fun at the conference. We love events as it gives us a chance to speak face to face with delegates and other vendors, providing us with real insight in to what is happening in our industry.

And, although he didn’t win any prizes, Sogeti’s Andy Ainsworth gave it his best shot in the Borland Cash Cube!

We’re already looking forward to next year’s event but luckily we don’t have to wait too long to be out and about again. Events where you can meet Sogeti UK in 2014 include:

We look forward to seeing you there!

Sogeti

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Posted in: Agile, Apps, Automation Testing, Cloud, Events, Microsoft, mobile testing, Mobility, Software testing, Sogeti Awards, Sogeti events, Test Automation, Test Expo, User Experience, Working in software testing      
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Yesterday Sogeti sponsored Computing’s IT Leaders Forum on the topic of: “Assessing the Future of BI in a Big Data World”. As Sogeti’s newest intern – this was my first foray into the world of events marketing and I arrived at the venue ready to learn about this on-trend topic.  After meeting a few of the delegates, it became apparent that the complex subject of Big Data, a constant in the minds of business and consumers alike, was poised to create a perfect situation for lively presentations, probing questions, and an exciting panel session.

Big Data, and how to apply it, still seems to be a pretty unknown quantity for many businesses; Andrew Charlesworth’s (Consulting Editor, Computing) introduction highlighted that although many businesses want to use Big Data they are, as of yet, not quite there. Andrew’s illustration of the information that Computing had collated in response to a questionnaire on Big Data was insightful – especially from my perspective, being very new to this. The graphics that he showed gave an interesting picture as to the state of Big Data, and the problems that people were incurring, for example:

50% of organisations are only analysing 0-50% of their data; while only 9% are analysing more than 90% of their collected data.

The majority, 60.5%, of organisations when asked how satisfied they were with their experience of using data analysis tools responded with a rating of 3 out of 5 – and as our speaker pointed out, in a world of constant rating systems if you saw a product for sale on-line with only a 3 star review, you probably would not buy it.

77% of organisations questioned believe that there is unrealised value buried in the data that their organisation keeps.

82% of organisations reported that their engagement with Big Data is still in an interest to planning stage: 36% of these were in discussion; 25% in a planning and appraising stage; and alarmingly 21% of organisations are still only just “showing an interest” in Big Data.

When asked “…what prevents value locked in data from being realised?” the results show that there is a plethora of reasons. The two key areas of concern were: “a lack of awareness among business managers that value exists”, with 58% of organisations reporting this problem; and 53% reported complications with data silos. Technical constraints – 28% – came back as the lowest reported problem.

It is apparent from these findings that organisations understand that there is significant value to be derived from Big Data, but there is a lack of knowledge to drive things forward in the vast majority of cases.

The second speaker of the day Menno van Doorn (Director, VINT Research Institute, Sogeti), had an immense reaction from all attending: based on his latest report for VINT, “Your Big Data Potential – The Art of the Possible”, Menno’s presentation gave a very exciting look into the practical application of Big Data; giving key questions for businesses to ask when trying to move forward with Big Data and how to make the most out of it. During his slot, Menno touched on some of the key problems affecting implementation, using current events such as Edward Snowden and a rather amusing Obama meme, to illustrate the pit falls of Big Data – of course, that is, if it’s not done correctly.

The third speaker of the day, Andrew Maclaren (Global Advisor on Big Data, Advanced Analytics and Data Science, BrilliantData Corp) gave his presentation using everyday scenarios from his experience with Big Data and its relationship to BI. In his role Andrew has seen companies face and overcome many of the problems encountered when trying to apply Big Data to existing BI investments – from the entertainment industry, to defence and intelligence, to banking – everyone has seen their share of difficulties; they key, he said, to solving these difficulties is tailoring a solution to you.

The panel-session, at the end of the forum, came to a crescendo discussing key questions raised both by speakers and audience members – essentially boiling down to two main queries: money and privacy. The panel consisted of a diverse group including: Trevor Attridge (CIO, MEC), Lauren Sager Weinstein (Head of Analytics, Customer Experience, Transport for London), Jem Rayfield (Head of Solutions Architecture, Financial Times), Sandeep Sachdeva (VP, Global Business Information Management Practice, Sogeti), and Andrew Maclaren, the third speaker. David McClelland (Consulting Editor, Computing) as moderator, managed to keep the panel and audience within our allotted time, but that didn’t stop all speakers from giving us substantial insight of how they use Business Intelligence currently, where they are with Big Data projects and their thoughts on where it’s going. There was talk about predicting the weather and pregnancies, using location analysis and sports events to optimise business operations and a whole host of other diverse topics that definitely mirror the diversity and complexity of Big Data. We finished the panel-session with each speaker giving their predictions as to where we would be, in two years’ time, in relation to Big Data and BI; some were optimistic, some were less so, but all agreed that privacy, data silos and data sharing beyond the limits of our own businesses may well still be on the agenda.

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Posted in: Big data, Budgets, Business Intelligence, Collaboration, Events, High Performance Analytics, IBM, Opinion, Sogeti events, Transformation, Transitioning      
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The move to the GCloud Framework has changed the way that the public sector buys technology… forever.

The G-Cloud is a cross-government initiative which enables rapid sourcing and deployment of secure, low cost services to the UK public sector. The scheme, now in its second year, has already proved itself to be a model for success, making it much easier for ICT suppliers – particularly Smaller and Medium Enterprises – to do business with Government organisations through a simpler and more efficient procurement framework.

In turn, The G-Cloud allows public sector customers to buy commodity services at a lower cost through the cloud, eradicating the need to procure expensive bespoke solutions from large providers. The Cloud also provides flexibility and a more accessible route to ICT services.

All of the services available through G-Cloud are approved by the G-Cloud Authority, who oversee and enforce standards and certifications for suppliers so that Government organisations can guarantee they are working with an approved solution.

And here at Sogeti we are pleased to announce that we were successfully appointed as a G-Cloud supplier through the new G-Cloud iii Framework earlier this month!

Sogeti’s software testing and Quality Assurance services had previously been available for purchase through the CloudStore under the previous G-Cloud ii framework, which was launched on 26th October 2012. The CloudStore is a searchable database that enables government agencies and buyers to match their ICT requirements with the best-fit technologies and approved service providers.

At this point, when Sogeti first joined the G-Cloud initiative, the CloudStore only hosted around 1,700 services. This latest framework now offers more than 7,000 technology services split into four areas – Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), Software as Service (SaaS) and, finally, Specialist Cloud Services (SCS) under which Sogeti’s services are listed.

The new framework, G-Cloud iii, will continue to list all of the Sogeti services mentioned above, but it will also include agile development testing and iSQI certified training courses on agile testing methods.

At Sogeti we are thrilled to be part of such an innovative and fast-growing solution to the government’s low budgets, numerous departments, and challenging procurement model.

Sogeti is also proud to be exhibiting at the first Think G-Cloud event which is taking place at London’s Business Design Centre in Islington on Tuesday 18th June 2013. We will be hosting a ‘testing surgery’ and providing Public Sector delegates with practical information and advice on how to use the CloudStore to select and purchase testing services.

For more information please visit thinkgcloud.com.

You can also find the press release announcing our supplier status under the G iii framework here.

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Posted in: Agile, Cloud, Events, Software testing, Software testing news, Sogeti events, Sogeti in the press, Testing and innovation      
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Since announcing TestExpo 2013 a month ago we’ve been in full swing working on the event and spreading the news – and we are now delighted to be able to name Test magazine and Professional Tester as key media sponsors for this year’s TestExpo event!

In case you missed our previous announcements, TestExpo 2013 will take place in London on 24th October. This year we are proud to be working in partnership with event organiser UNICOM to deliver the UK’s biggest and most renowned software testing event, and to pull together what promises to be the best TestExpo event to date!

We are thrilled to reinstate Professional Tester as a media sponsor for 2013 following their invaluable support around TestExpo™ 2012. Having Professional Tester on board as a sponsor for TestExpo is imperative as the magazine is considered one of the most trusted sources of European software testing and QA news, trends, processes, methodologies and opinion.

This year we are also excited to welcome Test Magazine as a first-time TestExpo sponsor. Test Magazine is authored by some of the more renowned members of the software testing, development and IT industries, and is focussed on raising the profile of testing as well as diving into the issues affecting the market, which makes it a great partner and a natural fit for TestExpo events.

As part of our agreement with Test Magazine, we are pleased to announce our sponsorship of The European Software Testing Awards (TESTA) in November this year. The awards are to be  the first specialised testing awards ceremony in the UK, and are hosted by the publishers of Test Magazine.

We are very happy to have both of these publications on board and welcome them with open arms.

The combined exposure that both of these magazines will bring, will no doubt have an extremely positive effect on this year’s TestExpo event.

Want to sponsor TestExpo? Whether you’re a vendor or consultancy with an interest in testing, whatever your size or area of focus please email us to hear about the range of sponsorship options available.

Visiting TestExpo: To find out more information and register for TestExpo 2013 please visit http://testexpo.co.uk.

You can also read our press release here which has more details about the media sponsors mentioned above.

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Posted in: Events, Software testing, Software testing news, Sogeti Awards, Sogeti events, Test Expo, Testing and innovation      
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Sogeti’s Global Mobile Solutions Director Andreas Sjöström was recently interviewed by IBM’ Digital Journalist Scott Laningham, on the subject of mobile trends, at the recent IBM Impact Symposium – held at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas from 28th April – May 2nd. 

View the video interview here!

In this interview we hear about how the way mobility is utilised is changing. Whilst, in the past, mobility focused on reducing time between internal processes, it is now being used as a way to drive revenue. Enterprise mobility allows organisations to deliver significant value, to millions of customers and thousands of employees, by enabling continuous access to their services through mobile applications, anywhere, anytime.

In this video, Andreas explains how mobile is evolving as a focus at Sogeti, as businesses across all sectors are increasingly viewing mobility as business critical, and beginning to concentrate on how they can improve their mobile strategies. Andreas promotes IBM’s Mobile First application as a solid demonstration of the key mobile trends and explains what these key trends are. Andreas also helps to shed light on the future of mobility, is the app phone becoming “the remote control of life”? Finally, Andreas explains the key elements of Sogeti‘s Enterprise Mobility Orchestration Framework and how it could be a useful tool for any business.

Andreas’ Top Three Mobile Trends
1. Anything business critical needs a strategy piece
2. The reduction in time from innovation to global deployment
3. As businesses begin to depend on mobility, quality assurance is becoming critical and so mobile testing is progressively key

The video allows  us a glimpse into the exciting mobile future; imagine pointing your phone at a plane in the sky and instantly being told the airline, flight number, flight origin and destination, altitude, speed etc. Andreas explains that this is data that has always been available online, but it is only with mobile app technology that the everyday value and the exciting nature of this data can be unlocked!

It also highlights how the Enterprise Mobility Orchestration Framework, developed by Sogeti, has five key elements that can help your company create an effective mobile solution:

1. Creating a Mobile strategy
2. Creating a Roadmap (assessing the maturity of a company’s mobile solution)
3. Application development
4. Mobile testing
5. Managed mobility and the development of mobile platforms

To finish, Andreas tells us that he is “jazzed” by an announcement earlier in the conference, regarding the launch of the new Internet of Things platform designed by IBM; wetting our appetite for a new wave of exciting innovation!

About Andreas Sjöström
Andreas manages Sogeti’s Global Mobility Practice and is passionate about new business enabling technology. For more than ten years, his focus has been related to mobile solutions and apps for business. Andreas is a senior advisor to multiple international companies, co-author of “The App Effect” and a frequent keynote speaker. He has received several technology leadership awards including Swedish IT Consultant of the Year, Top Ten Developers (Sweden), and seven times awarded the Most Valuable Professional award by Microsoft.

If you are interested in hearing more from Andreas Sjostrom you can also follow him on twitter @AndreasSjostrom or read his blog AndreasSjostrom.com.

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Posted in: Cloud, IBM, Microsoft, mobile applications, mobile testing, Mobility, Opinion, Software testing, Sogeti events, SogetiLabs, Technology Outlook      
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