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Agile Coaches' Corner shares practical concepts in an approachable way. It is for agile practitioners and business leaders seeking expert advice on improving the way they work to achieve their desired outcomes. If you have a topic you'd like discussed, email it to, or tweet it with #agilethoughtpodcast.

Aug 30, 2019

Today, your host Dan Neumann is joined by AgileThought colleague, John Gravitte, the Director of Quality! John has been in the quality field for about 26 years. He started out doing the testing himself but became a QA Manager in ’99 and began to manage teams, which is when he realized he really had a knack for process improvement, streamlining standards, and efficiency. When he arrived at AgileThought, he was introduced to Agile and it was a perfect fit for his quality-oriented mindset!


In this episode, they will be exploring how testing is done on Agile projects; taking a look at some of the challenges, good practices, anti-patterns, and which standards and processes can really enhance Agile. John also provides many key insights and tips on how to go about leveraging quality and using that within Agile teams.


Key Takeaways

How to address some of the challenges that come along with testing on Agile projects:

  • Use shift left testing (i.e. doing some testing in the development environment to give quick feedback to the developers)
  • Implement processes that support quick feedback
  • Arrange meetings with developers to understand exactly what they need to know and get clarity on the acceptance criteria
  • Have test case reviews and outline the test cases that need to pass prior to coding

How standards and processes can enhance Agility:

  • Having a process and a standard documented for a project helps individuals know what they are responsible for
  • If the project grows and you have to bring on new talent, having standards comes in handy for pointing newcomers to especially for younger talent
  • It’s not a replacement for thinking; they’re guide rails
  • The processes can always be updated when better ways are discovered

How to ensure quality roles keep up with the rapidly changing codebase and evolving feature sets:

  • Use test automation which enables those in quality roles to be able to keep up with the changes and rapid delivery
  • QA leads should meet with the test engineers one sprint behind to automate the most relevant pieces first and put that into a ‘smoke test’ which saves time

How does automation pay off?

  • Risk really builds up if you don’t use automation because there’s no way you can manually verify everything, every time
  • The amount of time and the coverage that you get from automation is worth the investment
  • As environments get used, data gets cluttered up, so having automation to do the data setup can really enhance quality


Mentioned in this Episode:




John Gravitte’s Book Pick:

Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, by Simon Sinek


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