Jim York, Software FoxHedge, Ltd.

Little ‘a’ Versus Big ‘A’ Agile

Wednesday, April 17, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

There is quite a bit of “not quite there” or even “not getting anywhere” agile going on. Sometimes organizations start out on the right foot, but quickly get mired in the process of integrating new practices with their existing processes. Stuck in Agilefall, ScrumBut, or FrAgile, they are not getting the results they expected from their agile adoptions. Agile is not about implementing new practices. Rather, it is a new way of thinking and a new way of being. The point is not to “do” agile, but rather to “be” agile. This workshop examines the potential and perils of agile practices, looking beyond the rule or the technique to the changes in thinking and behavior the practice promotes. Focusing on the intent behind the practice, this session establishes a foundation for aligning practice with purpose.

  • Learn the essential success criteria for agile adoption
  • Explore the potentials and pitfalls of agile practices
  • Understand the technique for aligning practice with purpose

Fiona Charles, Quality Intelligence

Using a Mindmap to Develop and Communicate a Test Strategy

Wednesday, April 17, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 AM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

A test strategy is the set of big-picture ideas embodying the overarching direction or design of a test effort. It’s the significant values that will inspire, influence and ultimately drive your testing, and the overall decisions you have made about ways and means of delivering on those values. Rather than the weighty templates standard in many organizations, a lightweight medium like a mindmap is a far superior tool for developing a test strategy and communicating its essentials to your stakeholders. In this workshop, you will work together with Fiona to develop a test strategy mindmap. Along the way, you’ll explore what really matters in a test strategy, how best to capture it in a mindmap, and how then to use the mindmap to communicate the strategy to stakeholders. Come join this lively workshop and have fun developing your own mindmap!

  • Learn the differences between a strategy and a tactical plan
  • Understand the essential elements of a test strategy
  • Discover how to use a mindmap to develop your test strategy

Elizabeth Glaser, PhD, The Boeing CompanyJoyce Sattovia, The Boeing Company

Virtually There: Being Heard When Not Seen in Teams

Wednesday, April 17, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader: ;

Technological advances allow individuals to work across time, space, and organizational boundaries in virtual teams, yet even with these advanced tools, communication can be our most challenging work. Being heard is of utmost importance to members of a virtual team, but just speaking does not assure the message is received. Teams that effectively bridge the distance gap have a clear competitive advantage with each new cost pressure a company experiences. This highly interactive session explores the challenges and barriers that current and future virtual team members encounter including how to keep virtual team members engaged and what to do to get team members to re-engage. Experiential activities will be conducted that bring concepts into clear focus through simulations that mirror the work environment. Participants will come to understand the impact their behavior and communication efforts can have on other virtual team members, and how they can help virtual teams to reach higher levels of productivity. Understanding and overcoming the roadblocks in effective communication in virtual teams increases productivity, effectiveness, motivation, and engagement.

  • Learn how to make the most of listening
  • Increase awareness of the difference between how virtual and face-to-face teams operate.
  • Find out how to deal more effectively with hybrid teams

Christin Wiedemann, PhD, PQA

Critical Thinking in Software Testing: Leveraging the Scientific Method

Wednesday, April 17, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

Strong parallels between a software tester and a scientific researcher are evident; they both employ their intelligence, imagination, and creativity to gain empirical information about the property or system being investigated. Science is credible, curiosity-driven, critical, impartial and dynamic – can’t we strive for our testing to be the same? Science continuously challenges and questions methods, techniques and core beliefs – how can you question and improve your own approach to testing in this way? Christin will introduce the core steps of the scientific method, describe how good software testing adheres to those principles, and then explore how truly understanding and embracing the scientific method can make us better at questioning our assumptions, staying impartial and being more credible testers. In smaller groups you will get to practice your critical thinking on a set of examples. You will also learn to recognize bias, and experience the importance of questioning assumptions hands-on.

  • Learn how to use the scientific method in software testing
  • Understand the difference between induction and deduction, and the risks associated with using these reasoning processes
  • Practice questioning assumptions and thinking critically

Lee Barnes, Utopia Solutions

Building a Strategy for Test Automation Success

Wednesday, April 17, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

Choosing an appropriate tool and building the right framework are typically thought of as the main challenges in implementing successful test automation. However, long term success requires that other key questions must be answered including: What are our objectives? How should we be organized? Will our processes need to change? Will our test environment support test automation? What skills will we need? How and when should we implement? In this workshop, Lee will discuss how to assess your test automation readiness and build a strategy for long term success. You will interactively walk through the assessment process and build a test automation strategy based on input from the group. Attend this workshop and you will take away a blue print and best practices for building an effective test automation strategy in your organization.

  • Understand the key aspects of a successful test automation function
  • Learn how to assess your test automation readiness
  • Develop a test automation strategy specific to your organization

Richard Bechtold, PhD, Abridge Technology

Eight Steps Toward Establishing and Enhancing Your Measurement Capability

Thursday, April 18, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

In most organizations, some type of a measurement effort is already in place. Almost all organizations track dollars and most organizations track other items of interest as well. Nevertheless, an enduring challenge is ensuring that your set of measurements and associated activities result in a sustainable and improvable capability and that they truly provide a solid foundation for your ongoing pursuit of quality. In this workshop you will learn eight simple and effective steps for establishing and enhancing measurement capability. These steps are: determining measurement motivations, prioritizing candidate measurements, conducting experimentation and evaluation, performing measurement reduction, implementing and deploying targeted measurements, visualizing, analyzing, and verifying deployed measurements, packaging and communicating, and systemically validating measurement capability. This workshop is not only for beginners, but is also for seasoned professionals who are seeking to streamline, simplify, integrate, and strengthen the accuracy and relevancy of the measurement activities within their organization.

  • Apply eight simple steps to achieve an effective, robust, and valuable set of measurements
  • Identify and evaluate the measurement needs of your organization
  • Learn techniques for streamlining you measurement activities

Eric Landes, AgileThought

Exploring the Testing Queue: Integrating Testing Techniques into Kanban

Thursday, April 18, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

There are many agile methods that can be used to help your development team deliver value. One of the latest is called Kanban, from the Lean manufacturing movement. In this workshop, Eric will lead you through using agile and traditional testing techniques in a Kanban process. You will learn how to create a Kanban board for different teams and situations and how visualizing constraints can help testers and developers deliver finished work faster. Eric will explain why using Kanban to track testing is different than a testing strategy using Scrum or other iterative processes. Learn why a team would use Kanban for their methodology and how the structures within a Kanban board can help testers to continuously improve their craft. You will apply these lessons to a practical Kanban testing solution during this workshop.

  • Understand the Kanban process
  • Learn how to develop a Kanban board for a variety of situations
  • Practice using a Kanban testing solution

Elizabeth Glaser, PhD, The Boeing CompanyJoyce Sattovia, The Boeing Company

The Key to Employee Engagement: Take Your Work, Not Yourself, Seriously

Thursday, April 18, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leaders: ;

Our economy has been turned upside down, the employer-employee relationship has been turned on its head, and technology has significantly altered how we work together and communicate. Still we are expected to be highly productive, enhance customer satisfaction, and increase profitability. We all know that increased employee engagement is highly likely to contribute positively to all of these, but how many of us really feel engaged? This highly interactive session will look at employee engagement in an engaging way. Participants in this experiential session will look at what employee engagement is and what it is not, the impact of employee engagement on our business and personal lives, and practical ideas that can be used to increase employee engagement in organizations. Beware! When you put some of these ideas to work, you might become emotionally attached to your job, generate enthusiasm, and enable others to really care about their work too!

  • Learn what employee engagement is and is not
  • Understand why employee engagement is important
  • Explore practical ideas to increase employee engagement in your organization

Philip Lew, PhD, XBOSoft

Understanding, Evaluating, and Improving Mobile App Usability

Thursday, April 18, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

User experience and usability are key ingredients of any successful mobile app. In this workshop, Phil will describe the differences between the two as important elements of software quality from the end user viewpoint. User experience, in particular, is an element that many forget until the end and generally don’t know how to measure since there are no standard definitions. Phil will discuss quality modeling and how usability and user experience should be modeled for the enterprise. This discussion will range from the initial components of quality, to breaking usability and user experience down into measureable characteristics for mobile apps, and then, using these characteristics to derive metrics. These metrics can then be used to benchmark, analyze, and improve the app toward end user satisfaction. Beyond this, Phil will also review a case study where various measurements were implemented to show actual usability improvement.

  • Understand the difference between usability and user experience.
  • Develop a usability model for your organization.
  • Explore key design and evaluation principles in software usability for mobile applications.

Peggy Schretter, Trustmark Insurance Company

Integrating Exploratory Testing with Traditional Testing Methods

Thursday, April 18, 2013: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM | Room:

Speaker:

Exploratory software testing is a powerful approach and can leverage the intuitive knowledge of the business or product being developed. It provides guidance to the journey of uncovering defects and begins to answer the questions of “what if.” Exploratory testing is not just ad hoc testing, though. It is a scientific process and requires a skilled tester to understand the process and expectations of the desired result. Exploratory testing is parallel with learning, test design, and test execution. In other words, exploratory testing allows the tester to control the design of the tests as those tests are performed and use the information gained while validating new and improved test scenarios. This workshop will focus on the benefits of exploratory testing, explain the situational activities, and provide hand on practice of the concepts. It will provide insights into how to manage exploratory testing, where it is best suited, the productivity gain, and how to put ET into action.

  • Learn to manage the expectations of exploratory testing
  • Explore the situational practice of exploratory testing
  • Understand how to leverage exploratory testing in the real world

Stephanie Chace, Meridian Technologies

Selling an Investment in Quality

Friday, April 19, 2013: 2:15 PM - 3:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

Most process improvement efforts fail to produce the desired results or achieve any lasting benefit. And so, in the current climate of cost cutting initiatives, it has become increasingly difficult to convince budget conscious executives to invest in quality improvements. Despite this challenging reality, on-going improvement is necessary for organizations to remain competitive. To help testers be ready to successfully overcome this challenge, this practical workshop defines a framework for establishing a business case for investing in improvements to quality and test related practice. The framework goes beyond ROI and helps testers understand how to quantify the value derived from quality investments in terms that business leadership finds compelling. Stephanie will show you how the framework can be leveraged strategically to drive incremental improvements, establish near term wins, and help build momentum for a quality minded culture. Join Stephanie and receive the keys to selling, and ultimately implementing, all the great quality improvement techniques you’ve learned during this conference.

  • Communicate the impact of poor quality in terms of quantifiable cost and cost avoidance
  • Explore different types of quality investments and how they can be translated into business value
  • Learn to assess potential investments to determine which will provide the greatest value

Basivi Junna, Scalar USA, Inc.

Test Assessment: A Systematic Approach to Find and Close Testing Gaps

Friday, April 19, 2013: 2:15 PM - 3:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

Software testing as a profession has grown tremendously over past two decades but, as a discipline, it is still evolving. There are many organizations that conduct only ad hoc testing on their applications, counting on the ability of their developers to produce clean code. While others, though serious, are not very systematic in their approach to testing due to lack of expertise. We have seen companies that go into fire drill mode to fix defects in production after every release. In this workshop, Basivi will explain the symptoms that call for test assessment, a systematic approach to conduct test assessments, and how to identify opportunities for improvement. Join Basivi to understand the procedure for calculating opportunities for improvement and how to close the gaps in testing in your organization. You will leave with a test assessment process and a template that will allow you to begin improvements immediately

  • Recognize the symptoms that call for a test assessment
  • Learn a systematic approach to conducting test assessments
  • Identify opportunities for improvement

Akemi Micallef, TEKSystems

Growing QA Skills

Friday, April 19, 2013: 2:15 PM - 3:30 PM | Room:

Workshop Leader:

QA has a unique position in IT as the bridge between business and technology. Today, QA is expected to address quality at earlier stages of code construction and use appropriate tools and techniques to tackle each architectural layer effectively. Relying solely on their business expertise is no longer enough. But, how do you grow your QA team’s skills while maintaining the ever-increasing workload? Join Akemi in this interactive workshop that will help consolidate all the learning from this conference into an action plan to grow your team’s QA skills. Explore the skills required from the effectiveness, efficiency, and economy points of view helping to articulate the value of QA to your upper management to gain support for skills development. Learn the common personality traits of QA professionals to understand how they learn and what motivates them. Akemi will discuss key elements such as learning styles, knowledge sharing, creating an environment of learning, turning knowledge into ability, and leveraging newly acquired skills.

  • Learn the skills required for today’s QA
  • Examine the QA learning profile
  • Build a model-based action plan for skills development initiatives