Disrupting IT – Testing and the TCOE Shift in a Digital Age

Technology’s rapid change is hitting technology itself disrupting software development and impacting how software is developed,tested, and deployed. Software testing where the traditional heavy offshore model is going by the wayside as corporate IT is demanding new models from its IT partners like never before.

IT Evolution

The evidence of technology advancements is unprecedented over the last 20 years. With the pace of change accelerating, so do the challenges to change processes (and behavior) to keep up with that change. Look no further than IT outsourcing powerhouses like Accenture, Deloitte, Infosys and others who’ve been trying to shift from traditional IT offshore delivery models,  are now challenged to find US software engineers to support domestic IT delivery because of this tech evolution.

Artificial Intelligence QA (AIQA), Autonomous Automation, testing accelerators are all new efforts to drive cost down, improve quality, and speed delivery. The continuing acceptance of agile delivery with processes like Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe)4 Level SAFe Big Picture 4.0__thumbnail-500px

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and DevOps have shifted testing back into the development area and away from the separate Independent Validation models. Offshore models are challenged due to the fact that teams outside the delivery team is showing little value. Take for example companies like Amazon and Facebook. With the increasing reliance on digital analytics, they’re learning about their customers and users at light speed.  And they’re choosing to change at light speed as well, updating their platforms 100’s of times per day. With that element of change (and disruption), the models had to change.

What about Centralized QA Testing Services – TCOE

For decades, the concept of a test factory, known also as a Testing Center of Excellence (TCOE) was one of the first outsourced and offshored IT capabilities. The concept of building testing as a discipline and expertise was important at the time, often because the waterfall models dictated that quality be checked at the end of the process, so to confirm that everything hung together well. Point being – the need for 100’s or 1,000’s of testers off in some country half way around the word is not the answer anymore.

Testing and Quality – What Bugatti Learned

I love comparing everything when I get to compare it to something automotive. When you think about innovation and quality, look no further then Bugatti. Think about this for a moment. You have a factory. You build something, it takes you months (or years) to construct, and the team decides to test if it works at the end? REALLY. BIG MISTAKE. Normal solutions wouldn’t work. Check out the piece written on the 18 Things You Can Learn by Driving the Bugatti Veron. You could use almost any manufacturing process where concepts of Lean Development has transformed the quality discussion to build in Quality during the development, and leave the end for a mere “check box type walk thru” before the final customer does their own inspection.

Challenges to the Status Quo in Software Testing

So where does that put us. Over the past 20 years companies have shifted millions of jobs oversees to the low cost provider. IT powerhouse outsourcing companies and Corporate IT divisions in the US have decimated the experienced IT professionals by abusing the H1-B visa process and creating an imbalance in US local built talent. That needs to change. Doing more with less is an option, but this challenge has also contributed to the decimation of the middle class in the United States.

Three things need to change. First, the technology processes need to continue to be disrupted by millennials that think this way and drive change based on improved delivery models. With the continued disruption, the software delivery models need to adapt to processes like DevOps and Agile. And finally, people need to pressure US government officials on the H1-B process, exposing it’s corporate abuse and gut to the middle class and shift back to building IT delivery models based on the experience and knowledge of our Universities, our US based tech firms, and hopefully rebuilding the pool of local expertise.

The concepts of gigantic software testing centers  and offshoring 80% of your workforce just doesn’t make sense anymore.

What do you think?

Other relevant searches:

  • QA Testing Services
  • Software Testing
  • Testing Accelerators
  • “Test Automation
  • Internet of Things
  • DevOps
  • Agile
  • Scaled Agile Framework
  • Crowd Testing

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