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Sidhartha Shukla
Sidhartha Shukla

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Modern QA: Balancing Automation, Functional & Other Initiatives

πŸ’š Modern QA: Balancing Automation, Functional & Other Initiatives πŸ’›

After Spending more than 13 years in IT, one thing I have realized that the testing domain is highly dynamic, as a Quality Engineer we have to wear multiple hats, but recently the number of QA has been largely impacted due to slowdown in market. With the developers to quality assurance (QA) personnel ratio narrowing to 10:1 to 15:1, it’s vital to address this shift strategically.

While automation offers numerous benefits, including efficiency and scalability, we mustn’t overlook the importance of functional/non-functional testing. Even as automation gains prominence, functional/non-functional testing remains essential for ensuring the quality and reliability of software products.

However, it’s worth acknowledging that automation may eventually reach a point of saturation. As a proactive measure, we can explore alternative approaches to effectively manage QA tasks.

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Rather than solely relying on automation, we can take ownership of additional project responsibilities, such as:

πŸ‘‰πŸ» OE (Operational Excellence) tasks
OE tasks refer to activities aimed at optimizing operational processes within an organization. These tasks focus on improving efficiency, reducing waste, and enhancing overall performance in various operational areas. This could include streamlining workflows, standardizing procedures, implementing best practices, and leveraging technology to automate manual processes.

Example: Implementing a system for tracking and analyzing production metrics to identify areas for improvement in manufacturing processes. This could involve streamlining workflows, reducing waste, and optimizing resource utilization to enhance operational efficiency.

πŸ‘‰πŸ» RCA (Root Cause Analysis) of issues
RCA is a systematic process used to identify the underlying causes of problems or issues within a system or process. It involves investigating the factors that contributed to an incident or failure, with the goal of addressing the root cause rather than just treating the symptoms. By conducting RCA, organizations can prevent recurrence of issues, improve processes, and enhance overall reliability.

Example: Suppose a website experiences frequent crashes. A root cause analysis might reveal that the crashes occur due to insufficient server resources during peak traffic times. By identifying this root cause, the organization can address the underlying issue by upgrading server capacity, implementing load balancing, or optimizing code to improve performance.

πŸ‘‰πŸ» Pipeline health monitoring and fixes
This involves monitoring and maintaining the health and performance of a software delivery pipeline, which is a set of automated processes that facilitate the continuous integration, testing, and deployment of software applications. Pipeline health monitoring includes tracking key metrics, detecting failures or bottlenecks, and promptly addressing any issues to ensure smooth and efficient software delivery. Fixes may involve troubleshooting failures, optimizing pipeline configurations, and implementing improvements to enhance reliability and speed.

Example: In a software development environment, continuous integration (CI) pipelines are used to automate the build, test, and deployment process. Pipeline health monitoring involves tracking build success rates, test coverage, and deployment frequency. If a pipeline fails due to failing tests or deployment errors, fixes may include debugging code, updating dependencies, or adjusting pipeline configurations to ensure smooth operation.

By diversifying our focus beyond automation, we can stay relevant and ensure the success of our projects. Let’s go for a balanced approach that combines automation with manual testing and proactive project management practices.


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πŸ€ My request to all QA to comment what tasks they do apart from testing or may consider to pick if they have bandwidth from QA responsibilities.

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