Testing teams are continuously under pressure for reducing development time without compromising quality. Traditional quality assurance methods stall as they cannot keep up with the challenges in continually delivering software that is time-bound, robust and efficient. It has prompted more and more companies to lean towards the idea of establishing a centralised testing service.
What is the testing centre of excellence?
A Testing centre of excellence (TCoE) is a framework that is maintained as a centralised service and shared across the organisation. The hub unit incorporates standardized testing processes, formal metrics, required tools, and expert professionals.
An amalgamation of tools, QA processes and human resources, TCoE allows organisations to implement test automation the right way while enhancing manual testing productivity and outcomes. They could achieve a more powerful QA maturity level as TCoE offers the benefit of scalability and robustness of QA function within an organisation.
Does your business require a testing centre of excellence (TCoE)?
The answer will be yes if any one of the following seven criteria applies to your organisation:
Your QA is associated not with the organisation but with mission objectives:
The research teams report to individuals in the absence of a formal testing process and thus do not have a shared objective or course. For TCoE to work against a joint purpose, it consolidates all test roles in a unique context that is consistent with the organisation’s mission, vision, and objectives. In the view of the upper executives, this adds consistency and exposure to QA.
It is a struggle to find test resources with desired qualifications, and thus project costs would be high:
There is little project visibility in the standard QA configuration since services are not optimally used. In the TCoE, test resources are grouped according to their core capacities in technology and business line (LoB), which help distribute resources properly across projects.
Your QA process is not transparent:
In other words, you are not sure how much ROI you get out of your QA process. Without a TCoE, there is no effective follow-up on the amount of investment a company has made in research and the return. TCoE adds metric monitoring to assess a successful QA process concerning test coverage, test effort, slipping defects, test efficiency and testing ROI.
Without losing accuracy, you want to reduce the test time:
With TCoE, you can achieve mature QA with standard tools and frameworks that make the test cycle more effective. The average decrease in the test period in organisations with the defined TCoE is up to 30 per cent, which significantly decreases time to the market.
There is no uniform QA method, and there is no collaboration between teams at the organisational level of best practices, resources and automation opportunities:
The wheel is reinvented each time with unnecessary time and effort. Throughout the whole enterprise, the TCoE standardised testing procedures and established standards for testing, test scripts and test execution. It helps to share best practices, learned insights and challenges in terms of automation. It leads to a shortened learning curve which reduces the chaos caused by changes in project testing.
Your projects are often struggling with defects leakage and missed deliveries:
TCoE has allowed companies to reach a degree of automation of up to 50%-70% in testing, which reduced the test cycles by an average of 30% and limited defect leakage to less than 2%.
Your company does not know about current testing patterns:
Emerging technology is not focused, and you do not have the appropriate framework to validate it. A framework for TCoE makes QA more entrepreneurial. It is in keeping with emerging technology and test patterns, enabling the company to compete with new market prospects rapidly.
Test strategy lacking Test Automation
If software and its peculiarities cannot be fulfilled following the test plan, there could be a shortage of automation test forms. TCoE can help, as TCoE managers can help research leaders develop a more successful testing approach for high-level QA targets and help BAs develop multi-level software specifications when a specification of the software requirements turns out to be incomplete.
Moreover, a substantial proportion of the testing time (selection of repetitive test cases and scenarios, description and maintenance) and budget are required for this initial test automation. Any test leads without TCoE will attempt to save money and automatically test the test plan to help them reach strict deadlines and budgets.
If the relevant test automation can not be carried out and reasonable test output stays within time and budget are guaranteed, TCoE managers can propose that the project’s test time and financial limits be changed.
For instance, because of the release of highly bugged applications, the option also leads to more expenses.
The lack of skill test automation engineers
The QA team consists of a manual test engineer with output writing skills required to script and maintain automated test scenarios. Simultaneously, developers don’t know relevant automation testing tools or experience for creating appropriate test cases.
The manual test engineer is not a developer who could fill the gap without sufficient training. TCoE could help with its managers knowing each test engineer and having an established knowledge transfer process. Managers could find test team members, preferably the manual test engineers.
The latter are enthusiastic about test automation and could provide training to them on a broadly applicable programming language like Java or python and the more adjustable test automation tools like Selenium, Ranorex, TestComplete, etc.
Summing it up
It would seem overwhelming to set up such a centralised unit, but like all good things, it also requires only a one-time investment of time, resources and efforts. The benefits that it offers in return for outward investments giving the organisations the desired ROI. Organisations who have adopted TCoEhave reported an average cost reduction of 35% over three years.
Some of the other benefits of TCoE are that it brings in more agility to QA and establishes a continuous development process driven by metrics. Setting a TCoE needs a certain amount of change and support, and commitment from the top management. But you always have the option of partnering with the company that already has the TCoE capability.