Final conclusion of Agile Approach - Agile Testing

Even though,as of the date of the submission of this case study,we are still working toward the final release of our product, already we are able to report the following benefits of the agile process that have been apparent to us:

  • Early demonstration of product to stakeholders– Having functional drivers at the end of every iteration allows us to give early demonstrations of the product to interested parties.These stakeholders include the sales team, beta customers, upper management and in some ways most important, the development and test team itself.
  • Inspiring confidence in the customers– Allowing beta customers to try out the software gets them interested early, shows them how the software is developing and starts to give them a feeling of confidence in the quality of the product,assuming the beta releases are of sufficient quality. I know that agile process says that every iteration exit driver should be of high quality, but we heartily believe that a bit of extra testing on beta drivers is not wasted effort.
  • Managing the managers’expectations– Demonstrating to your management chain that you have something that works keeps them feeling good about continuing to spend the money to support your team.
  • Inspiring the sales team– Demonstrating your product to the sales teams gives them a good idea of what will be possible with the product,familiarizes them with its capabilities, and lets them start thinking about which customers may benefit from the product.
  • Keep it clean– Having builds that work all of the time makes it very easy to spot defects as soon as they are integrated into the code base. It makes it much easier to track down the cause of problems and get them fixed, fast!
  • Don’t underestimate the value of the feel-good factor– Finally,working on a product that “works” almost all of the time certainly gives me a really good feeling.In the past I’ve worked on waterfall projects where the code sometimes failed to compile for weeks at a time and even if it did compile,it didn’t work for months!The frustration that causes is terrible.Working on this agile project,where I can install almost any build and expect it to be functioning fully, is a real joy, and happy people work much better than depressed ones!

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