Inspiring Teams to Adopt Best Practices - Tale of Two Projects

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Information about Inspiring Teams to Adopt Best Practices - Tale of Two Projects

Published on March 10, 2014

Author: LauraFrancoASQCSQE



Everyone injects defects. Only the developer or author of a work product is able to build quality into the finished product. How does a Quality or Process specialist inspire smart, tech-savvy Engineers to adopt an effective inspection practice that produces long-lasting results? Introducing a best practice that thrives requires a culture that fosters and expects continuous improvement. The learning experience must be practical and aimed at adult learners. Lastly, the infrastructure should make it easy to follow the process and collect the data to measure improvements. This presentation will discuss the ingredients for successfully inspiring teams to strive for better quality.

Inspiring Teams to Adopt Best Practices Laura Stanley Franco

© 2014 Laura Franco Experienced Software Development Leader Process and Quality Change Agent Master of the Difficult Situation

It was the best of times, It was the worst of times Contrasting doubles

A Tale of Two Projects Single External Customer • 3 releases in 3 years • New and legacy code • 5 collocated development teams • No functional QA • Small system test team • Customer paid us $X/defect to reach quality criteria Many External Customers • 2 major releases per year • New and legacy code • 15+ distributed development teams • Offshore functional QA team • Small, local system test team • Customers demand low number of critical defects © 2014 Laura Franco

Project 1 – Single External Customer • Defect quality criteria agreed • One week in-house user acceptance prior to system testing at customer site • Software shipped in parallel with user acceptance week • Defects found during user acceptance counted against quality criteria © 2014 Laura Franco

The Challenge • One team set a goal – zero defects during system testing at client site • Some developers planned their unit testing • Some did not plan/write down their test cases • Mix of new and legacy code © 2014 Laura Franco

The Negotiation  Written test cases for NEW and LEGACY code  Written test cases for NEW code ONLY The Agreement  Written test cases for NEW and MODIFIED legacy code © 2014 Laura Franco

The OutcomeNew Modified Legacy Unchanged Legacy  Unit test case found critical defect in unchanged legacy code!  Chester, the Process Advocate and Change Agent is born!  Developers inspired to plan their unit testing and deliver higher quality code! © 2014 Laura Franco

Project 2 – Multiple External Customers • Standard quality defect criteria in place • System test shortened from 14 weeks to 8 weeks • Developers ramp down during system test and ramp up on next release • Developers responsible for fixing incoming customer defects © 2014 Laura Franco

The Challenge • Dramatically reduce rework during system test • Team under pressure to improve quality and add more features • Large number of critical/major defects during system test • High rate of incoming customer found defects © 2014 Laura Franco

The Negotiation  Distributed teams participate in 1 week Mastering Quality workshop  Realistic short-term plan to do now  Long-term plan for roadmap prioritization The Agreement  Local team participate for 3 days  Regional quality black belt candidates trained 2 days; observe 3 days

Surprise!  Senior team members + architect only ones who “needed” to attend  Team “too busy” so local quality black belt did the team’s pre- work  Workshop cut from 3 days to 2 days  Participants arrived cold and angry! © 2014 Laura Franco

Reset! • What to do? • Listen to team’s pain points • Revisit the goal • Focus on circle of control: • Team owns the problem • Team has Quality data • Team has knowledge of module’s weaknesses • Team owns the solution © 2014 Laura Franco

The Outcome • Team generated: • 33 product improvement and • 71 process improvement ideas • Built a tailored team development process • Distributed 3 code review checklists, requirements and design review checklists • Created short-term action plan for improving quality © 2014 Laura Franco

Discussion • Is there a Secret Sauce? © 2014 Laura Franco

Let’s stay in touch: Email Twitter @CoachLauraF © 2014 Laura Franco

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