Friday, 25 April 2014

Applying processes wrong

Just a quick note on processes and (mis-)use of same, inspired by this Picture:

It is clear that the fire brigade has a process for protecting fire hoses crossing a road, but it is clearly not fit for scenarios where the hose is crossing rail tracks - None the less it has been executed by the firemen.

The picture made me think of a finding we had while running some Test Process Improvement projects some time ago. We were applying Sogeti’s TPI model to projects and programmes in order to optimize use of test resources.

The finding was related to the interview question “For re-tests, a simple strategy determination also takes place, in which a substantiated choice is made between variations of ‘test solutions only’ and ‘complete re-test.’”

And the answer given by the project manger was: ”Yes! We have a defined strategy, the procedure is to execute all test cases for every release.” Something that might look good on paper, but is a complete waste of time and resources, much like the fireman’s effort of protecting the hose from the train. At best the hose will be cut, leaving the time spend shielding it a waste, at worst the train is derailed.

Revisit those procedures from time to time, and ask why do we do the things we do? Don’t question everything, only that what seems odd.

Have a nice weekend!


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