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Re: Is a QA Engineer necessary on a small team?

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  • John Streiff
    It seems the various agile methodologies share some common themes, one of which is empowering the team by using the natural abilities of each member. If this
    Message 1 of 42 , Feb 2, 2006

      It seems the various agile methodologies share some common themes, one of which is empowering the team by using the natural abilities of each member. If this is true, then you want a team member with a QA background. This is not to say that person is on the team strictly for QA. Rather it is for the purpose of cross-training, educating, mentoring, helping (use the word you like) the team to become more aware of QA procedures and issues. In like manner, this same individual will likely learn more about classic developer and analyst issues. Another theme seems to be transferability: team members are transferable to various parts of a given project and to various other projects in the same or different roles. This expands each team member’s capabilities to the extent they are willing to do so and to some degree gives the organization a more flexible development organization. One could even make the case that such an organization should or could save the company money in the long term.

       

      John Streiff

       

       

       

    • David H.
      ... I know :) But that is exactly my point. When all of the people refuse to work together, customer, business unit, analysis, the quality of the product will
      Message 42 of 42 , Feb 7, 2006
        Steven Gordon wrote:
        > On 2/7/06, David H. <dmalloc@...> wrote:
        >> I do agree that people need to realise that most quality issues originate
        >> much
        >> higher up. Most of the time when the requirements are gathered.
        >
        >
        > David,
        >
        > In Scrum, when are the requirements "gathered"? Who participates? It's not
        > like a waterfall process where we can go blame some analyst.
        >
        I know :)
        But that is exactly my point. When all of the people refuse to work together,
        customer, business unit, analysis, the quality of the product will suffer.
        Often enough some software department has to deal with developing software for
        a domain they know nothing about. Yet there is no insider they are allowed to
        talk to. Now what will that do to Quality ?

        > It would be a process smell if the team depended on the QA person to ask the
        > difficult questions while all the developers just sat there daydreaming
        > about how they were going to code it.
        >
        Actually I was more thinking that the QA person is there to kick off the
        important act of questioning yourself. I do look at this from a more
        philosophical point of view than a technical one. Everyone can be the QA
        person in a team and I hope that all of us have a QA person in us. I know that
        I do QA aspects whenever I am Scrum Master for a project. However it helps
        when someone steps up and states. "Yepp I will have an eye on it, maybe more
        so than others"

        > If the developers cannot ask the right questions, the solution is not to
        > depend on somebody else to ask them, but to integrate somebody into the
        > team who can show them how.

        Yes, see above, I do believe we agree here.

        > Integrating that person into the team would
        > mean they do not do all the QA work and they do not just do QA work. If you
        > do not integrate that person, then the cross-training will be much less
        > effective.
        >
        Once more, yes, yes, yes :)

        -d
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