Test Leadership Congress
June 27 2019, New York, USA
Test Leadership Congress
Christine A. Fisher - Implementing BDD - How One Team is Making it Work
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About speaker

Christine Fisher
Manager, Business Analysis and Quality Assurance at NAIC

Christine started her career as a high school history teacher, but a switch to software training got her started on a career path in technology where she has held various positions in professional services and development over the past 15 years. Currently managing a team of Business Analysts and Software Quality Engineers at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, she has found that her roots in teaching are still important to help build and develop a strong team. She's passionate about ensuring functional teams are equal members of the development team and helping define those roles as they change in a DevOps culture.

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About the talk

Topic: IT

Behavior Driven Development, or BDD, has been a buzzworthy term in the testing and development community for several years. At first glance the elements of BDD seem simple: Testing scenarios! Living documentation! Automation! Reports!

That sounds great; why isn't everyone doing it?

Upon deeper dive, it's obvious the implementation of BDD needs a lot of forethought and planning and that teams must approach it for the right reasons.

This talk will follow the evolution one team is currently experiencing in their shift to BDD. BDD was selected to help them modernize the work that the business analysts, manual testers, and automation testers were doing and to support the larger organization's DevOps transformation.

Why is BDD the right methodology for this and what does the process look like?

This talk will answer those questions and share the preparation, major milestones, successes, and failures the team has encountered along the way. Join me to find out what happens when a traditional organization completely turns their old processes upside down sets out to conquer BDD.

00:03 Introduction: how I went from high school teacher to QA

03:42 We needed to hire a tester and I would just do that

05:42 New opportunities at a new company to manage a team of VA's: I've really jumped into QA world

06:44 My team and how it’s working through a significant process change: BDD is right for us

07:34 The main buzz word: automation, automation, and automation

08:58 BDD: how we were supposed to do this at a new company

10:13 The BDD Book: Discovery – the source of inspiration

10:58 Sharing a few quotes directly from the book with my team

11:39 BDD does not replace classic testing and testing skills

12:25 Additional benefits of using BDD

13:48 A beginning: we were starting to automate tests

14:36 If you're changing something make sure that you're doing it for the right reasons

14:59 Entering the DevOps transformation

15:39 National Association of insurance commissioners: we're not a software development company

16:55 We weren't going to change the people – we were using new tools, new technologies were doing development in a different way

18:37 The responsibilities of a team leader

19:27 Our journey toward BDD: false start

20:31 The three Amigos meeting: a product owner or a business analyst, a tester, a developer

23:19 The turning point: BDD workshop

26:26 In need of fresh faces

27:46 Writing a business proposal

28:59 Moving forward: a test strategy meeting with the QA

31:23 Next steps: weekly scenario meetings, a tag library, the standardized universal language

32:44 Moved tests to GitLab

33:18 A long-term engagement with the consulting firm

33:53 Sharing some feedback from my team

37:58 Next steps: to continue to get all of our project teams in our team members engaged

39:05 Conclusion

39:27 But I am still a teacher: supporting my team when it needs it


Welcome. 00:03 My name is Chris Fisher, 00:03 an we're going to talk today about implementing BDD how one team is hopefully maybe. 00:06 Making it work OK and I don't see a clicker in here, 00:13 so you're going to have to excuse me 'cause I tend to wander. 00:15 So I'll probably be over, 00:18 there at some point when I need to be slipping slides so before we get started. 00:20 I just wanted to introduce myself. 00:24 First of all I have my LinkedIn. 00:26

QR code up here so you can scan that from the app. 00:28 Or if you want to search for me on LinkedIn and Christine Ketterling for sure. 00:31 But I would love to connect with all of you. 00:34 Continue having conversations here at the conference or later, 00:36 on, so feel free to do that. 00:40 So let me give you just a little bit of background about how I went from high school teacher. 00:42 To test manager Alright so right, 00:47 I have no idea what I'm doing. 00:49

I'll just tell you guys that right now. 00:51 So I started my career as a high school teacher graduated with a degree in secondary education and taught. 00:55 Social studies for 6 years I taught grades nine through 12. 01:01 Geography government world history USS 3, 01:06 did it all. 01:10 At Let's go team try not to be too impressed by this, 01:10 but I was also the head, 01:15 cheerleading coach OK. 01:16

I know I know yes, 01:16 yeah, we placed 3rd at skate one year that was the best free did with my competitive. 01:19 So I was a high school teacher and when I decided to leave teaching then I went into professional services. 01:23 I took a job training. 01:31 In software and I wish I could tell you that, 01:33 like I really researched. 01:35 What my options were, 01:35 and thought about what I wanted to do. 01:37 But I didn't like that was a fluke. 01:39

I took a job that sounded good, 01:42 but that's fun this entire second karere. 01:44 In it that I've had. 01:47 So when I went into professional services. 01:49 I started like I said as a trainer managed a group of trainers. 01:52 Wrote training and development project management consulting did all of that for quite awhile. 01:55 It traveled quite a bit with that. 02:02 And so 6 years ago, 02:05 I had my daughter and when I did I decided I wanted to stop traveling. 02:06

And so I moved over to the development side and when I moved into development. 02:12 I went to a be able. 02:17 Which was a very natural fit for me? 02:19 I've always been a writer I love my documentation? 02:21 It was a good fit and professional services, 02:26 a lot of what I've been doing was writing implementation specs. 02:28 Writing client facing materials. 02:31 Hum. 02:31 Running a few basic implementations scripts with that. 02:36

I became a business analyst really enjoyed that piece, 02:39 figuring out what the client needed documenting that being the middle man between. 02:42 The development team and the stakeholders. 02:47 So I've been talking for a few minutes now and I've never once mentioned QA right. 02:50 So at my previous company, 02:56 I was on 2 different teams as a BA and when I switch to the second. 02:57 We were a large company. 03:02 We had a large office in Bangalore also an the solution. 03:04

I was working on had been in Bangalore. 03:08 For the last 10 to 12 years and they decided to bring that back to the US because we had a DOD contract into that had to be done. 03:10 That development had to happen in the USA. 03:17 So when that came back to the USS we created a new team. 03:20 There were 5 of us, 03:23 I think to start with. 03:24 And we all had experience at the company. 03:26 But we didn't have experience together and we didn't know that. 03:29

Solution so we didn't have any norms. 03:32 We didn't have any team processes or standards or anything, 03:35 and we Also at that point did not have a tester. 03:39 We had an opening and we needed to hire A tester. 03:42 But we didn't have someone and I said, 03:45 I will just do that. 03:47 And I'm actually not a good tester an I am. 03:48 Find to admit that I can write a test. 03:51 I can review a test. 03:53 I understand how all of those things. 03:54 But my mind is really with the VA side. 03:56

I tend to get caught up in all of the details and. 03:58 All of the documentation and people who are great at QA have a different mindset than I do. 04:01 They can look at something and really start to poke holes in it? 04:06 And that's not what I do, 04:10 I say, well, what can I document about all of this. 04:11 So I could do it and it was a stopgap for awhile, 04:15 but need taking that position, 04:18 while we were hiring somebody happen to coincide. 04:20

With what was happening at our company in the testing organization across the company, 04:23 which was all of the. 04:28 Shift left moving away from long scripted has starting to look at automation, 04:30 all of those things right that we know. 04:34 Are good but because we did not have a? 04:36 Process on our team, I just was able to say. 04:41 Hey, I'll figure this out. 04:44 So we didn't have anything that we had to change we had kind of a sister. 04:45

Team that they had been in the USA, 04:49 the entire time. 04:51 And they had very, 04:51 very deep processes around how they did their testing in the communication with that and we didn't have any of that on my team. 04:53 So I said, well I'll figure this out and so I did that did a little bit of the testing, 05:00 but there's a lot more of the process. 05:05 In the mean time, then I hired a QA for that team I was able to hand her that. 05:07 Framework. 05:12

And then she was able because she did have that QA mindset to really personalize all of that and figure out what to do. 05:12 So we did that and we ended up rolling out what we had done how we had kind of. 05:20 Transformed what we were doing even though we weren't doing anything first, 05:26 but would work for other teams to then the rest of. 05:29 Our organization, which is about 300 people, 05:32 but I think that was really my first foray into QA process. 05:35 Hum. 05:39

A little over a year ago, 05:41 I had an opportunity at a new company to manage a team of VA's. 05:42 And I thought well that would be really good expand my skill set and I don't know what I was. 05:46 About the QA piece like Oh sure I understand the importance of QA and I can do that right. 05:52 I don't know I think I may be thought that I would be focused a lot on the VA because that's really. 06:00 Features like supposed to have pets that we always do. 06:04

But then once I got in there, 06:11 if you would have told me 14 months ago that I would be Speaking of the testing conference. 06:12 I would not have believed you but once I got in there and realized the process in the things that needed to be done to improve what we were doing. 06:17 I didn't have to have those. 06:23 Asking skilled I had to have some process skills and he needed to understand the work that was being done. 06:24

And in the last years I've really jumped into this world so I've got my QA in my question mark. 06:30 I still don't always know what I'm doing but I'm really enjoying it so that's a little bit of my background. 06:36 And how I got here. 06:41 So our goals today, I'm going to talk to you about how my team is working through a significant process change, 06:44 so we're going to talk about BDD. 06:49 But if you are not doing DDD if you're not interested in BDD. 06:51 That's fine. 06:54

We're going to talk about how you need to make a process of the things you need to do to make a process. 06:54 Change on your team because it's really hard to change the way you're working because the work still has to be done. 07:00 Right you can't just quit everything your doing and learn something you were going to talk a lot about what we did with that. 07:06 I'm going to talk about why I think DDD is right for us and then I'm going to share some tips. 07:11

Successes and failures that we've seen in the last. 07:16 You are so that's how it felt when I first learned about BDD and it was about 2 years ago, 07:19 so it's still. 07:25 Company and its into the talk by a developer who was talking about BDD. 07:25 It was the first time I had ever heard about it and notice. 07:31 All of my exclamation points here right so a lot of buzzwords an can you tell me what the main buzz word was? 07:34

Write automation automation automation, so he talked this through we can have these scenarios, 07:41 and it's going to be living documentation. 07:46 And reports and it's easy to read and we can all do this remember that, 07:49 we can all do that. 07:52 'cause I'm going to talk about how that didn't actually happen in a minute. 07:53 And then all of the automation. 07:57 I. 07:59 So at the end of this talk, 07:59 he challenged us to go back to our teams and Tribed and so I looked at. 08:02

My tester and said you want to give this a try and she said sure so we went back, 08:07 I told my boss. 08:11 Will try this will try and figure it out? 08:11 He said great he sent me links to a couple of articles. 08:14 And that was it and then we didn't have any idea of what to do I read the articles. 08:18 We looked at like the given wind in scenarios, 08:24 but what we had gotten from the talk was that we didn't need requirements. 08:27 And so if we didn't need requirements. 08:33

I didn't know what I was supposed to do as a BA. 08:35 But she wasn't quite ready to write all of those scenarios, 08:39 so if she took that then put job was, 08:43 I doing? 08:45 And if I took that what job was she doing because she was not automating those were supposed to pass those scenarios. 08:45 Who are engineers we did not have any autumn QA automation art? 08:53 Right so we struggled a little bit and try to figure out exactly how we were supposed to do this. 08:58

And then it is old really quickly, 09:06 and then it completely stop. 09:08 'cause I left so we just ended that little experiment right there. 09:10 Alright so I went to. 09:13 A new company and I'm thinking about BDD like there's some value there that. 09:16 I just I didn't understand based on what that talk like that entire development team can participate at one point. 09:23 I stopped the developer who gave the talking like. 09:30

Hey, you know, we're really struggling with this we're trying it. 09:32 We can't quite figure out like where the division of work is between CA and QA So what did you guys? 09:35 Do on your team? 09:41 Who's like? 09:41 Well, we didn't involve them. 09:42 OK, so that's not actually be Dee Dee Ann. 09:44 I didn't know enough about it at the time they were just. 09:47 Automating tests using that given and then format that's great. 09:51

There's nothing wrong with doing that, 09:55 but they weren't really doing BDD. 09:58 So he told me that and it just didn't sit right. 10:00 But I still didn't know enough about it. 10:03 Hum. 10:05 To to understand that that was OK or not OK, 10:05 so this was the first intro that I had to be DD. 10:09 And then I went to a conference last year with the Agile Conference and I happen to pick up this. 10:13 And I don't know if anybody in here has read it the BDD books discovery. 10:18

And this is actually supposed to be a series of 3. 10:23 The last time I checked it was the first one was still the only one published. 10:26 So I don't know if the other two are out. 10:31 Yet or even the second one, 10:33 but I would highly recommend this book if you have. 10:35 Any interest in BDD at all. 10:37 It's a quick read. 10:39 It's short. 10:39 It's easy to digest. 10:40 I read it on the flight home from that conference. 10:40

So when I read this book, 10:45 you know, sometimes you have a light bulb moment and you realize that you're having the light bulb moment like? 10:46 Oh my God, yes, this is everything that I didn't understand so reading this book was my light bulb moment. 10:52 And I'm just going to share a few quotes with you directly from the book because when I was reading these. 10:58 All of the things that we did wrong and that. 11:03

That right my previous company like those started to make sense. 11:06 So first of all the purpose of software development is to deliver solutions to business problems and I think we all know that right. 11:10 We all work with different applications and we're all trying to deliver. 11:16 Our best solution. 11:19 DDD helps maintain a connection between the requirement and the software. 11:22 OK, so we can still have requirements. 11:27 We took a deep breath with that. 11:28

I really like my requirements. 11:30 OK, I wasn't ready to get rid of those. 11:32 So this is just another bridge between the 2. 11:34 BDD does not replace classic testing and testing skills. 11:39 So my manual tester there's still room for her right and then finally. 11:44 Improve test automation is one of the significant outcomes of following a BDD approach, 11:51 but it is a downstream. 11:57 Outcome. 11:58

If you are choosing BDD just automate your tests the chances of you being successful are probably pretty low. 11:58 This is a methodology. 12:07 This is a process that you have to put into place and that's where I realized that they didn't do. 12:07 They didn't try BDD on that other team and I'm not saying there's anything wrong with the approach they did. 12:14 But they were automating tests based on a BDD concept right. 12:20 Uh. 12:25 And so. 12:25

We didn't want to try it to Automate, 12:25 but we can get some additional benefit out of using DDD. 12:29 And one of those is automation. 12:33 So I read this book, 12:36 I was so excited. 12:38 I went back to my team. 12:38 Have any of you ever had a boss who went to a conference and came back and said guess what? 12:41 I heard a talk I read a book I did something right. 12:47

So this was them and we recreated this picture, 12:52 the other day with the thumbs down and people turned around and not paying any attention. 12:55 And we ended up having a little bit of fun with this, 13:00 but actually I wish they could have taken. 13:02 A picture of when I pulled them all into the conference conference room and said Hey, 13:04 you guys. 13:07 I want to take this. 13:07

Picture of your reaction when I first started talking about BDD because that was actually more the reaction then like she. 13:09 Still, talking about this and now she wants to take a picture of us. 13:14 So, but we didn't know each other very well when it so I started at. 13:18 In the beginning of May and this is now like the first week in August. 13:25 So we didn't know each other very well. 13:29

So nobody was actually doing this when I came back and started talking about BDD. 13:31 They just smiled and then I'm sure went back to their desk and talked about me. 13:35 And that's OK that's alright. 13:39 So this thing why mess with a good thing. 13:42 This was really important because I had this idea. 13:44 and I wanted to try. 13:48 It now, I'm understanding the value of what BDD is. 13:49 But I was not hired to fix a broken team this team was pretty functional. 13:54

They were writing decent requirements. 13:58 There weren't a lot of Mrs. 14:00 We had good tests in place and we were starting to automate tests. 14:02 With the linium we were doing all of the things right that you're supposed to be doing now there's always room for improvement. 14:05 And. 14:14 I'm not saying that everything was perfect, 14:14 but I was not hired to fix anything. 14:17 An I'm brand new I still had a ton to learn? 14:19 Why did I want to mess with a good thing? 14:22

And I spent a lot of time, 14:25 asking myself do I want to mess with this? 14:26 Is there something that I want to change here? 14:28 And if I do why and so I think that's the first thing you're bringing in process improvement. 14:30 If you're changing something that you're doing. 14:36 Make sure that you're doing, 14:38 it for the right reasons. 14:40 I still ask myself, sometimes am I doing this just because. 14:42 I knew I want to make my mark on something is this going to be successful. 14:45

So those are a lot of conversations that I had back and forth with myself. 14:49 But the reason I decided why we, 14:54 we wanted to try this why I wanted to try this, 14:56 I'm using me. 14:59 Right just the Royal we're going to drag them in with me was because of the DevOps transformation so. 14:59 6 months or so before I started they had announced a 3 year state ahead initiative DevOps CI CD continuous delivery. 15:06 Moving all of our applications to the cloud. 15:17

All of those things right. 15:20 So first of all we are a traditional organization and when I say traditional organization. 15:22 I don't mean not talking about are. 15:27 Industry, although we are in insurance, 15:29 but I'm not talking about the industry. 15:31 I'm not talking about our dress code. 15:33 I'm not talking about the fact that we don't have beer Fridays or anything like that. 15:35

What I'm talking about is that I don't work for a software company I work for the National Association of insurance commissioners. 15:39 It is a nonprofit organization and it's been around for over 100 years. 15:46 Our IT department now makes up about half of the company. 15:52 An we've had applications in existence for 20 years or so now. 15:57

So the software development but we're not a software development company, 16:01 it's becoming a very important piece of what we do. 16:05 But that's not our goal at my previous company. 16:08 We were a major health care software company and that's what we did. 16:11 So this is very different and when we're talking about DevOps. 16:16 We had all of the roles that are part of software testing so we had manual testers. 16:19

We were starting to have some automation testers we had these days. 16:24 Those people are reported to me. 16:28 We have some product owners who are on a different team that we have our development. 16:30 But we weren't looking to change that structure. 16:34 Right I know some type companies are going to say. 16:39 We're going to make everybody in automation tests are going to get rid of QA. 16:43 There are a lot of different things that are going to be done. 16:46

That's not something that our organization was going to do I don't think that those are good things to do, 16:48 but that's not what this talk is about? 16:53 And so we weren't going to change the people or the structure of the people. 16:55 So that's The that's important. 17:00 Change is exciting so with this there was a lot in there still is. 17:04 There's a lot of buzz about what we're doing. 17:07

We're using new tools, new technologies were doing development in different way. 17:10 But who's using those tools and technologies. 17:16 Start developers and our automation engineers. 17:18 But I still have manual testers and I still have the A's and I am very sensitive to the fact. 17:22 That their skills need to be developed as well, 17:27 and the work that they're doing needs to change as well. 17:30 We need to modernize those skills. 17:34

We can't have this DevOps transformation. 17:36 And not transform all of the people I think that that's really important. 17:40 I wanted to find a way. 17:44 To increase and expand their skills. 17:46 And then finally but what's going to happen to my job there had been some talk of. 17:49 There's room for everybody, but the work that you do might change. 17:55 A little bit and so I tried to. 17:59 I had a conversation with our chief architect at that time and really tried to nail down. 18:01

What what is that message? 18:06 What are we telling people and there wasn't a great answer and I said then we need to stop telling people that. 18:07 Because that's scary if you know how to do one job if you're good at your job if you like your job and you're being. 18:12 Hold that it might change, 18:18 but you don't know how that's a very scary position to be in. 18:20

So it was part of this, 18:26 this DevOps transformation an the BDD that really this piece is what drove me to Tribed. 18:28 Because I do think. 18:37 As a leader we have a responsibility. 18:37 And we have a responsibility to drive change. 18:41 We have a responsibility to move the team forward. 18:45 And we have a responsibility to build skills and exploring new ideas. 18:48 And when I told my team is that? 18:53

We don't want to keep doing our work, 18:56 especially manual testing and writing requirements. 18:58 We don't want to keep doing that work. 19:01 In the same way we've always done it and then somebody else, 19:04 God forbid a developer comes and tells us. 19:08 How we need to change our work right? 19:11 We need to take control of that we need to try and figure out. 19:13 How we can change and what we can do to modernize our skills and to fit in with the DevOps transformation? 19:16

So our journey toward DDD. 19:27 And the first start was not great. 19:30 Hum. 19:33 I decided to start with just our business, 19:33 analysts and again if you read the book, 19:36 it's very clear. 19:38 If you're thinking about DDD if you're trying to understand the behaviors of your end users. 19:38 You need to start those conversations before you even write requirement. 19:43 And then you move on to manual testing and then you move on to automation. 19:47

And so I started with the business analyst only I gave them an assignment. 19:51 A reading assignment from the book that I brought back which they loved. 19:55 Right now, it was very quick. 20:00 Selected. 20:01 Several different passages, but probably took about half hour, 20:01 45 minutes to read. 20:06 So I had them all read that and then I told them it was on them to meet as a group. 20:06

To talk about how they could incorporate those ideas into what they were already doing and then schedule some time with me. 20:13 To present a plan. 20:20 So they did what I asked them, 20:20 too, and they scheduled a meeting with me. 20:25 And what their plan would be as that they would do the three. 20:28 Amigos meetings as needed as everybody familiar with the three Amigos meeting. 20:31 Or requirements workshop. 20:34 OK so the idea is that you get. 20:38

A product owner or a business analyst so up somebody from the business in the room, 20:42 you get a tester in the room. 20:47 And you get a developer in the room and there is a great example and not dbook of. 20:49 Exploring the idea of the pizza delivery service and so you know. 20:56 You order your pizza you want it delivered and very straightforward happy path. 21:01 We know what to do and then they throw in this wrench of. 21:05 OK, the address needs to be changed. 21:08

We actually accidentally put in our work address but we need it delivered to home. 21:10 And so then. 21:14 Everybody start you know the testers can say, 21:14 well, what about this. 21:18 The developers can say, 21:18 well, what about this. 21:20 Keith and it kind of hangs up in the scenario given in the book that. 21:20 If they give us the address change before the pizza leaves and it's no problem right. 21:25 But what if the drivers already out in the car. 21:30

Well, in the example the developer says we don't have the technology about making a major change at this point. 21:33 To alert the driver like through the application and so it's that you're talking through all of these scenarios, 21:40 and that's where you're trying to understand what the behavior is. 21:45 But the gotchas might be and making a list of all of those, 21:48 and again that book really details. 21:52

How you can do that and how you can track those conversations. 21:54 So what they decided is that they would do the three Amigos meetings as needed, 21:58 and we have in our Department. 22:02 4 different agile teams, so this group is distributed among those teams. 22:04 That they would do them and that I would not be invited and that was OK right. 22:10 We're all still getting to know each other. 22:14

But they wanted to just keep it like what the book described they didn't want to manager in there watching what they were doing. 22:16 I decided OK well well, 22:23 let that one go. 22:25 So I think each of the team. 22:25 You had one or 2 meetings, 22:29 they tried it. 22:31 Things slow down really quickly because I left the team set the pace. 22:31 And I'm glad that I did that again. 22:37 We were still learning that you know the trust and trying to work with each other. 22:39

But it didn't really work and then just as. 22:44 A matter of circumstance coincidence. 22:47 I don't think it was because of BDD or me like 3 of my for BJ's. 22:50 All turned in their resignations and then it had the 4th when followed not long after, 22:55 so in some of them moved internally. 23:00 They had some different opportunities internally. 23:01

One left the company and it's fine, 23:04 but What didn't really work in the 1st place then fell apart at that point because then I had a team to rebuild and I. 23:07 Couldn't go any further with this. 23:14 So we got new people in place we started working on that. 23:16 And where things really changed was when we were able to have a BDD workshop at the very end of the year. 23:19 My boss, said Hey, we have some extra training money and if we don't use it. 23:28

We won't get it next year. 23:33 Anybody have anything that they need so to our management group. 23:34 I I do, I'll take some so. 23:39 Nobody else really put a claim on it. 23:42 I took what we had, 23:44 and I had a different conference, 23:46 Attesting Conference last fall. 23:48 I had met some people. 23:48 And had had some conversations with their company about things that they might be able to do. 23:51 And again to fill some of my QA gap since like hold my contact there and I ask her Hey. 23:57

Do you think that you can do a BDD workshop and she said. 24:02 Oh yeah absolutely so very quickly we put this? 24:06 Together this workshop happened, the Wednesday and Thursday before Christmas. 24:08 Alright so Christmas I think was on a Monday or Tuesday last year, 24:16 so I mean, we're right into the Holidays. 24:19 Team is thrilled with me that I'm asking them to do these things they weren't really looking forward to this workshop. 24:22

But we had a two day workshop, 24:28 we brought people in from the outside. 24:30 And we had two trainers and I think that this was important because we had. 24:34 A people person and we had a technical person. 24:39 So we would 'cause I made my whole team go. 24:42 We had you know the Villiers, 24:45 who don't care about automation. 24:47 All some of my manual testers are interested. 24:48 Some of them are not. 24:50

And so we would do just enough of the soft skills, 24:52 the theory, the why behind DDD and then. 24:55 They would switch years and they would talk about the automation peace and all of the technical pieces and that was really important. 24:58 For the team, it kept both of them engaged throughout to have those 2 different people there at the end of the first day we didn't. 25:05

Open space with each of those trainers and the team could decide which one they wanted to attend they could. 25:12 Attend one and then go to the other for awhile if they wanted to, 25:17 but getting to talk to those people. 25:20 Ask their questions asked some of their fears and I went back and forth so they could do that without me around. 25:22 That helped as well. 25:28 And when it was over the team was really excited, 25:31 which was fantastic. 25:33

I they were stopping by my office, 25:33 we love that. 25:36 You know, 25:36 we want to try this. 25:37 The second day of the workshop. 25:38 The first day was mostly theory, 25:40 the second day of the workshop. 25:42 Ended up being all hands on we took an example from one of our teams. 25:43 We tried to write the feature files. 25:48 We tried to write scenarios, 25:51 we reviewed those as a group to figure out. 25:53

You know that this was a lot harder than we thought it would be and we critiqued each others and. 25:56 Figured out how we could improve and so we really got a lot from that. 26:02 And if you want to make a point that we were very lucky to be able to do this. 26:05 And I understand that so I don't think if you are implementing BDD if you're doing some other process changed. 26:11 But you have to spend money. 26:17

I don't think that you have to go to an outside vendor what I think was important. 26:19 Was having neways in there? 26:24 Fresh faces who could talk the talk I couldn't do that. 26:26 I saw a lot of value from what? 26:30 I read in a book and then from some research that I was doing, 26:32 but I didn't have the experience to back it up. 26:35 I had started to look before we had this opportunity started to reach out to some of my Contacts. 26:38

Then the community in Kansas City and trying to see if I could get somebody local into maybe just come in and do a talk. 26:43 Having the money being able to do the workshop that was really nice. 26:49 I don't think that was necessary, 26:52 but I do think maybe bringing somebody else. 26:53 And even if it's just a little bit to give their experiences might make a difference. 26:56 If you're having a hard time selling a process improvement to your team. 26:59 When we went on. 27:04

Holiday break, I mean, people were in and out of the office, 27:07 but I didn't really see anybody for. 27:09 2 weeks and during that time I thought about what we had just done because I didn't want to. 27:11 Send this money and have a good workshop and not do anything with those skills that we had gained. 27:15 And I also wanted to think about what we what we really wanted to get out of that so. 27:20 Again very lucky in what we were doing. 27:26

I knew that there were probably some funds in this year's budget. 27:28 For a longer term, consulting agreement, 27:31 but I don't want to put my name on a high dollar contract. 27:34 If it's not going to be successful and if I can't show value to our organization and so I spent some time. 27:39 Writing a business proposal my boss actually called. 27:46 But I wrote my thesis. 27:49 I don't really think that that was a compliment, 27:51 but I do think she at least skimmed it. 27:53 Of. 27:55

But I needed to put down I told you I love my documentation. 27:55 I needed to put down on paper. 27:59 What we had learned? 28:00 What our goal was and was this something that could really be successful and if you go out and Google BDD? 28:00 You're going to find a lot of failure stories. 28:09 And so that way I mean, 28:12 like reading all of those one night. 28:13 I kind of went down a rabbit hole. 28:14 But that was terrifying like is there. 28:16 Anybody who's been successful with this? 28:18

What are we going to do so I just laid out? 28:20 What I thought we could do what I wanted to get out of it and what my plan was. 28:22 How we could get started before we were going to spend additional money I wanted to prove that we could do some of this on our. 28:26 Known as well so once I had all of that logically written. 28:32 We came back from the Holidays. 28:35 Like I said, I gave it to her we discussed and that was fine. 28:37

But we did start to make some changes on our team. 28:41 So one of the things we did. 28:44 We were having sort of having test strategy meetings. 28:47 We had tried this with one of our teams already. 28:50 And it was really successful with that team and what we were doing every week after grooming, 28:52 then we Grooming on Wednesday for that team on Thursday, 28:59 we would have a test strategy meeting with the QA MBAs. 29:02

From that project team and we would go through those stories again and make a decision about what would be automated. 29:05 That would be manually tested with the idea of We're going to talk through BDD, 29:12 an what scenarios we should. 29:17 Our scenarios are and then again, 29:20 we can identify which ones. 29:22 We want to Automate and which ones we don't. 29:23 I'm 29:26 It still works really well with the original team and they were able to shift focus pretty easily. 29:28

The other teams some were more successful than others, 29:35 but every team started doing this. 29:38 We had weekly scenario meetings during first quarter. 29:41 I called these poetry readings. 29:45 And so the one thing that I did what I learned from that. 29:46 False start an earlier in the fall where I had left the views kind of set the pace is that I still wanted the team involved, 29:50 but I also knew that we were not going to get anywhere. 29:57

If I didn't just say we're going to stop writing scripted tests and all of the different project teams were doing testing differently. 30:00 You're still writing step-by-step tests in Excel somewhere, 30:08 putting a few notes on a jira there wasn't a really cohesive. 30:12 Playing around with each team was doing and it was you know the QA on that team knew what their process. 30:16

And so that piece I said that stops immediately after the first of the year and so we're going to start. 30:23 Writing these scenarios, and then during these weekly scenario meetings. 30:29 The whole team would come in and we would go through them and I know it. 30:33 People on the spot to share what they had written but the team was really great nobody was ever critical. 30:36

But they were doing because we were all in the same boat, 30:42 but just talking through do we need more detail in that? 30:45 Is this really the right thing? 30:48 Can we split the scenario into two and so I think that helped it? 30:50 Team quite a bit. 30:53 I also told them during that first quarter. 30:53 That plan on everything that you are writing that that throw away work. 30:57

And that's hard, but that's honestly kind of what they were doing to begin with right putting all of that information into. 31:02 An Excel sheet. 31:08 They weren't going back and finding that an updating those and so we were just writing. 31:08 Manual test in a different way. 31:14 But I didn't want them to think that we had to automate these. 31:16 Or that these has had to live on. 31:19 We had to get some practice doing it. 31:21 So we did our weekly scenario meetings. 31:23

We started creating A tag library and this was very important if you're doing BDD you want to have it. 31:26 Standardized universal language across your team and so because we had multiple project teams. 31:32 We want to make sure that we're using the same tags. 31:38 So if I've got somebody writing a login script or login test on one team and the tag is. 31:41 LOGIN and on another team, 31:48 it's LOG underscore I in then as they shift. 31:50 Games because they get moved around. 31:55

They need to be able to find those and so we use confluence wiki. 31:57 We started a wiki page with just what these tags are so for the universal things like logging in. 32:01 And then also application specific things so that way they have an idea of what their cabs should be. 32:06 And if they are on a new team, 32:12 they can go in and they can look to see what people have been using? 32:13

We started a slack channel just for BDD questions and that was nice that it's still like activity varies. 32:17 Put questions out there, you know, 32:27 I have all of these variables? 32:29 How do I put those into my test anybody have any ideas on that. 32:30 We moved our tests to get lab, 32:36 so at this point that wasn't exactly true but we were getting ready to move the test to get lab. 32:38 So our automation, engineers were very comfortable with GitLab. 32:44

RBA is an R manual testers were not. 32:47 And so we wanted to make sure that we were getting everybody access to get lab that they understood. 32:49 How to put things in GitLab but their documents in there? 32:55 How they would edit those tests because the idea is the manual testers are going to be. 32:58 Writing these tests writing the scenarios working closely with the diese to understand the behaviors and so either one might have to go in and make an? 33:02

Update to a test and so getting everybody comfortable with GitLab and then starting to move our tests. 33:10 And then again, we started I started on the paperwork to do a long-term engagement with the consulting firm again somebody. 33:18 Just come in and kind of shore up what we're doing, 33:25 and what our next steps. 33:27 How do we put all of this? 33:28 Together and I think that that's probably as leaders in the room. 33:30

I think that that's something that probably all of you can identify with. 33:33 If we don't have enough time. 33:36 I could spend. 33:38 All of my time focus on getting this implemented, 33:38 but realistically. 33:42 I can't do that. 33:42 There are a lot of other things that I have to do and so having additional resources. 33:44 It's going to be a big help and so I started working on that piece. 33:49 Alright I wanted to share some feedback from my team. 33:53

On what we've done where we've been so far. 33:56 No more stress about what test cases have been written where they're stored who is putting together a spreadsheet to track them. 34:00 And how they are being divided up for test. 34:06 So we're starting to see some positive there. 34:09 Will this work for our applications. 34:12 This has been a question I've had several people in my office like we have old applications. 34:15 Complicated just in the fact that. 34:22

Some of them are 20 years old. 34:25 There are a lot of databases. 34:26 A lot of Dependencies. 34:28 One of them relies on a lot of financial data input. 34:28 From 3rd parties? 34:32 How do we get all of that into these tests so will this work? 34:32 Are we wasting our time. 34:37 They don't always know the answer I think that it will but that's a concern. 34:39 It's a valid concern that they have. 34:42

It takes the messiness of use cases and test cases and streamlines the process into easy to read feature files. 34:45 We started strong in first quarter, 34:55 but died down, some in second, 34:57 which I absolutely agree with. 34:58 We did a lot in first quarter. 35:00 Second quarter because of some other things that were happening on the team we didn't put as much focus on this. 35:02

Right now, what we're doing with BDD is what I consider and work so we're doing our everyday work. 35:07 And we're trying to learn how to implement Don our team. 35:14 And that's really hard and I know I don't want to dig into it, 35:18 too much. 35:22 But I know that there are people who are writing scenarios to show me. 35:22 And then going back to their Excel spreadsheet on the side and really doing what they know how to do for testing. 35:27

Because the first thing when we make a change and it gets hard and we are under pressure from a deadline. 35:33 As we go back to what we know right or wrong. 35:39 It's our quickest default right. 35:42 It's the way we know how to get things done. 35:43 And so that's something that I know that we did kind of fall off a little bit in the second quarter. 35:46 And so I'm afraid there's been a little bit more going back to what they know works for them and for their team. 35:51

You keep saying This isn't just for automation, 35:59 but sometimes it feels like it. 36:01 This is probably the one piece that, 36:03 like Oh, OK are we doing the right thing and we making sure we're getting the focus on the VA's. 36:05 And the work that the manual testers or doing too. 36:10 And so I had them send me some of this. 36:13 Probably a month ago and since I have seen this. 36:16 I'm really trying to make sure that the. 36:19

The less technical people on the team understand the benefit in it for them and how this is changing their work, 36:21 how the physics. 36:27 In their skills. 36:27 Alright. 36:31 So where are we now we have consultants coming on Monday actually so we have about a 3 months? 36:31 3 month engagement and they start on Monday. 36:38 We have a BA Emmanuel, 36:41 an an automated QA who will be coming to help. 36:43 Report what we're doing. 36:46

And again I hate to say like that's what you need to do for process change. 36:46 It's not, but, for what we're doing. 36:52 I'm very excited for this. 36:54 I think that that's really going to help boost where we're going to be able to go. 36:55 We have some API test that have been automated, 37:00 so one of the testers on my team, 37:04 he's just. 37:06 Is never sitting still he always wants to try he was doing a lot of the API automation so he went? 37:06

And look at how he could write these scenarios how he could automate that he started using cucumber and moved his tests away from selenium. 37:14 And so we have some of those we don't have any for the UI and those are going to be the harder ones. 37:22 Obviously, but we at least have a start and we have that. 37:28 We now have GitLab Repose, 37:32 where those are we have those API tests incorporated into our pipeline for an application the one that's being rewritten. 37:34

Being released, it hasn't been released yet and it probably won't for I think we're looking at next spring. 37:41 Is our release date that we still have a while to go but it's catching bugs catching issues in the code and so. 37:48 We have some success there and that feels good. 37:54 And our next steps will be to continue to get all of our project teams in our team members engaged. 37:58

There are still some people who are like well, 38:03 she's telling me I have to do this so I will. 38:06 But I don't think that they are interested in it. 38:08 I don't know that they love the idea so trying to 38:12 Get the enthusiasm in the engagement up for everybody. 38:15 I'm getting all of our teams writing automated test so starting to automate the UI tests, 38:19 taking those scenarios, we've been. 38:25

Working on writing and now starting to automate them and that was from the very beginning. 38:27 I told him by the time we got to 3rd quarter, 38:31 we should be comfortable enough. 38:33 With both our process with writing those scenarios that we should start to Automate and so that's where we are using cucumber. 38:34 So it will be starting that. 38:42 And then like I said, 38:45 so that BDD becomes the work so that writing our test in scenarios doing that. 38:46

3 Amigos meetings of the requirements workshop really understanding the behavior. 38:51 That that all just becomes second nature to us and it's not In addition to the work that they're doing. 38:56 So again. 39:05 My path to being a testing manager is a little bit different, 39:05 although in the last session. 39:10 If anybody was in this room. 39:12 Hum. 39:13 No sorry 2 sessions ago, 39:13 somebody asked thing was in the other room. 39:16

Oh, how many of you planned to go into QA and I think only one person raised their hand so we probably all have our story. 39:18 That's not quite so conventional of how we got where we are, 39:23 but I am still a teacher. 39:27 I'm still definitely. 39:29 It's really dark for my team an you know supporting them when they need it. 39:29

All of the time that I spent in professional services was really valuable that's good experience to bring in if you've worked on the professional. 39:34 Service aside and flying out to client sites and working with them trying to understand their workflows and what makes them unique. 39:41 That's just like working with a team all of those skills translate and then like I said those question marks. 39:50

The way those are starting to become exclamation point I still probably won't ever feel completely comfortable in this world. 39:55 But I really have enjoyed what I am doing like I said, 40:03 I would love to connect with all of you on LinkedIn. 40:06 I thank you for coming if you have any questions, 40:09 we have just a couple of minutes or even. 40:11 So thank you and enjoy the rest of your afternoon. 40:13

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