Monday, November 26, 2007

Customize the standard process

The SDLC starts from Inception phase and ends with maintenance phase, in between it hold Requirement, Design, Coding and Testing. Each phase has its own sub streams. As for as testing is concern, it has many types, many levels, and many approaches to accomplish that. Considering the types/levels of testing deployed, it has Unit testing, Integration testing, System testing, Acceptance testing, Load testing, Stress testing, Volume testing, Compatibility testing, Interoperability testing, Alpha testing, Beta testing, Gorilla testing, Smoke testing, Scalability testing, Bench mark testing, Security testing, Grey-box testing etc., Automation starts once all the test cases are verified and closed, 99% development is completed. Depending up on the time frame, entire or partial/key functionalities are automated.

A successful release of an application is lot more depend on the above mentioned testing process. A company can customize the flow regarding their project and time frame. But still many companies do not have a flow of testing. Even they are not ready to customize it. Despite the proven result oriented methods still they are hiding behind the conventional methods, please do remember a quote “You cannot control what you cannot measure”; at each stage productivity/quality of the software should be measured with metrics. Only proven methods will give you tangible results. But such companies have a testing department and qualified testers are working in it. These testers also write test cases based up on SRS, but the SRS will not be a static one. The requirements will be changed completely as development goes on and the written test cases become obsolete. But still they work on the project and do testing (adhoc). Testing will be continued even when the requirement changes are intimated orally. In such situations it is not possible to maintain traceability matrix. In the absence of traceability matrix, calculating bug leakage, age of bug and density of bug is also not possible. Some times at the verge of release, they would change the entire design layout. Despite of all the problems testing is carried out and the project is released successfully.

The ultimate aim of a software company is to release the project on time and on budget. But here, due to the change in requirement and time pressure, the effort is doubled and enormous amount of time is wasted. Just imagine, if the same process is done with some standards and enough prior analysis is made before the start of the project would help us to complete the project with more accuracy in terms of time and budget. Thousand miles of journey starts with single step, here the small companies need to formalize the same work what they are doing right now, which will help them to perfectly fit in to the shoes of CMM level 2 companies. If not, surely it is going to be a concept of “Blind leading a blind”.

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