DevOps and software testing predictions for the future
Looking at the bigger picture, our digital world evolves and changes so rapidly, which is why it’s good practice to reflect on the past to make better informed decisions about the future. Did certain industries grow as expected? Which technologies were over-hyped? What community surprised you in the past year?
Here are some DevOps and software testing predictions for the future in 2019:
Salesforce reliance means new solutions
As Salesforce systems scale and project implementations and customisations grow, Salesforce IT teams are faced with a system that becomes more complex each day. Because of this, in many cases when deploying a new project or change, it becomes difficult to calculate risk and implement quality assurance with limited visibility.
However, reliance on salesforce.com shows no sign of letting up, so teams will need to adapt. Looking to next year and beyond, I predict more Salesforce teams will seek dashboard-based solutions that are integrated to Salesforce to provide detailed visibility into the product lifecycle, and go beyond calculated guesswork into data-based decision-making.
This is part of a bigger trend toward refining risk management and analysis strategies with the goal of better communication with the customer and reduced vulnerability of the deployment.
As SAP retires its ERP, organisations will slowly make the transition to SAP S/4HANA, which will likely also require many to upgrade or re-implement their existing SAP applications. There are more than a few ‘roads’ to S/4HANA, however. Currently, teams can continue using their ERP and thus pay for maintenance while preparing for an eventual migration to S/4HANA. Alternatively, they can take the express route to S/4HANA, leveraging its intelligence and automation-based benefits sooner.
In 2019, and likely through 2025, organisations will be carefully plotting their journeys to S/4HANA, investing more in determining which ‘road’ is best-suited for their business. However, their first steps will be driven by building the business case, in which it will be critical to present the innovation gained by the move to S/4HANA, rather than just the cost and efficiency savings achieved by infrastructure.
QA still needs a human touch
As the role and scope of quality assurance evolves, tomorrow’s digital transformation efforts will see bigger gains from human capital where QA teams learn to be more cross-functional and take on a more end-user perspective, with the purpose of achieving better customer experience – today’s competitive differentiation.
The amount of functional testing automated in today’s organisations, and lack thereof, is a key indicator of the increasing importance and investment in human involvement in the QA process.
Heading into 2019 and through the next few years, it’s crucial that the human element of testing isn’t overlooked or discounted. Even with the growth of AI and automated testing, greater collaboration and more investment on the customer representation side of QA is where we think companies can truly establish positive differentiation.
Testers take greater interest in customer/user experience
As the World Quality Report notes, the expectation that QA and testing should contribute to end-user satisfaction has grown exponentially over the last few years. While testers were once primarily tasked with ensuring the software product’s functionality, there has been a noticeable shift in the last couple of years.
Today and in 2019, we believe test managers will become much more aware that the quality of customer experience is equally important, and put more emphasis on getting this right.
Delivering quality at speed still proves challenging
As more enterprises take on digital transformation initiatives, they are looking for new ways to deliver innovation faster, without undermining quality. The key is ensuring customer satisfaction. In the past, organisations took a siloed, waterfall approach to change delivery.
However, to meet today’s delivery standards, and to ensure customer success well beyond 2019, QA and business teams need to work together to ensure the right changes. All without compromising business process quality. The best way to do so, is to introduce agile methods.
Agile is the answer
As the pace of change moves ever faster, in many cases, relying on the waterfall approach just isn’t good enough. And as more companies turn to implement an agile practice, it will be much more than just the technology. It’s a cultural and company shift in the way changes are delivered.
While many enterprise IT companies are trying to adopt agile practices now, it’s often easier said than done. 2019 and the years to come will be a true test and turning point in the way companies implement changes, and adopt agile solutions so that they can continue to deliver consistent results to keep their customers happy.
Listen up enterprise – DevOps is the future
DevOps has emerged as an enabler for expedited change for enterprises everywhere. Throwing the siloes to the pasture, collaboration across wider teams is truly helping to seed time to market, and we can only hope that more companies adopt this in the coming years.
And as more enterprises open their doors to collaboration, DevOps is also helping transform testing methods and routines. The short development cycle typically associated with agile is also aiding in this mind shift. As a result, agile and DevOps can no longer be ignored as a passing trend. Not only are they here to stay, but like the kid at school with candy to share, they’re quickly gaining popularity.
Risk-based testing will rise in popularity
As the role of the tester continues to shift from only ensuring software functionality to one that takes greater interest in the overall customer experience, testing hasn’t become any easier. Additionally, figuring out what to test, and ensuring teams are testing the right thing, also adds another layer of complexity.
At the end of the day, introducing change is really about the bottom line – the business impact. That said, it’s easy to see how risk-based testing will increase in popularity in 2019 and beyond, bringing with it increased quality and efficiency. Risk-based testing helps establish a baseline of what has or hasn’t been tested. It also helps scope test plans to reduce costs. Everyone wins.
2019 and Beyond
The need for increased agility isn’t going away. Enterprises around the globe are striving for greater efficiency, and IT leaders need to be able to deliver faster, seamless software release to their customers, while reaping more value from their investments.
Over the next few years, I see more enterprises turning to agile ALM to overcome their stubborn inefficiencies, increase collaboration and bolster application lifecycle management.
David Binny, chief product officer, Panaya