Analysis Of The Case Studies Introduction Agile Testing

This examines in detail the agile case studies presented in Part, identifying particularly successful agile techniques, as well as those testing approaches that were not so successful and which may need to be treated with caution. The next makes a number of proposals based on the analysis in this for agile practices that you could reuse as part of the process of setting up your own agile method, while this also provides a series of recommendations on how you might manage the roll-out and adoption of your agile method.

In addition to the case studies that made it into this book, I was lucky enough to have had offers of roughly the same number again, and I am very grateful to all those agile practitioners whose work helped to inform the material in this and the following.

I have also been fortunate enough to be able to draw upon a rich vein of agile material from a number of other sources, including:

  • my association with the British Computer Society Specialist Group in Software Testing(the BCS SIGiST), a number of whose members have been kind enough to submit agile cases studies;
  • I am also indebted to those SIGiST members with whom I have discussed and corresponded with on the subject of agile testing and who have helped drive and define the material in this chapter;
  • my work on the committee of the Intellect1 Testing Special Interest Group, where I have been very pleased to have been asked to promote the cause of testing best practice and process;
  • the academic community where, both through my early career on the teaching staff at the Open University and later as part of my own research activities in support of my doctorate, I have been involved with a wide range of academics working at the cutting edge of agile research;
  • and last but not least, The Day Job, where I have been fortunate enough to work on a daily basis with agile development and testing best practices, and with colleagues who are not just inspired by and evangelical about agile, but who also work in real-world agile projects delivering genuine value to their customers.

This is structured in the following manner:

  • Sections review a series of agile best practices that the case studies have highlighted as being particularly valuable from a software quality perspective and are organized under the following headings:
  • Agile Development and Testing,
  • Agile Process and Project Management,
  • Agile Requirements Management,
  • Agile Communications,
  • Agile Meetings, and
  • Agile Automation.
  • Section provides a summary of the findings of this chapter.

Wherever appropriate, references from the case studies are used to support the findings in this chapter. In the couple of instances that a reference has been sourced from one of the case studies that did not make it into the body of the book, this is made clear in the text.

Where the case studies have flagged some cautionary aspect of a particular practice, the issues raised are discussed and appropriate suggestions for mitigating the issues are provided.

Finally, while I use the term “analysis” for the method by which I have reviewed the case studies and collated the agile best practices, I must make it clear that I have not used any formal specific statistical method to arrive at the conclusions. Rather, this is more of a qualitative “9 out of 10 cat owners who expressed a preference said . . . ” style of treatment of the material provided in the studies and other sources. Although the overall number of case studies submitted represents a very substantial body of agile work, the sample size and structure of the submissions make it difficult to perform any statistically significant analysis.


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