2020 began with the onset of the COVID-19 virus which has brought about a new work culture of working from home. It is still here in 2021, and we all have to live with it for some years now. The IT Industry has also been impacted by this unprecedented virus. Testing Team members working from home are under constant pressure to provide bug free releases without compromising quality. Collaborative testing with teams while sitting in an office cubicle is not a luxury anymore and hence makes continuous testing even more difficult. Testers will have to perform the same monotonous task of testing the applications with proper timelines. With the same old traditional ways of testing, it is impossible to deliver a software which is time-bound, efficient, robust, and bug-free. With all the above challenges being the new normal, companies are moving towards the adoption of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) under a Testing Centre of Excellence.
A TCoE is made up of deploying testing processes, proper resources, and Automation/RPA tools in order to provide testing services with the best optimal benefits across the organization. It has been already proven that TCoEs once setup can provide improved quality of software with other important benefits like lesser time to market and lower cost of ownership. Often it is questioned by Business Owners, does it really require to setup a TCoE. Let’s find out some of the reasons below to setup TCoE:-
- Reduction in Project Timelines – With proper alignment of teams and resources in place, it is bound to deliver projects before assigned timelines.
- Standardization of Automation/RPA Tool – Defining an Automation/RPA tool at the initial level of TCoE ensures that all team members follow same standards of creating scripts which leads to shorter script cycles and execution times.
- Reduced Go to Market time and Enhanced Cost Efficiency – With software delivering on time, business can certainly take to market sooner.
- Defining responsibility within teams – Investing in the team to train them and align responsibilities certainly gives a job satisfaction to them.
Let us now understand what steps are required to build a systematic and successful TCoE.
- Start with Challenges – Everything starts with defining the challenges for which we are doing something new. Here in this case, it is very important to prepare the list of challenges which the TCoE is going to solve in future.
- Alignment of Resources – Identifying resources as per their skill set and interest from within the team to get them prepare for the role they are going to play once the TCoE is setup is again very critical. Their can be multiple profiles that can be created like Business Analyst, Solutions Architect, Infrastructure Engineer, Support Engineer, Developer, Tester, etc. These days, big IT Service giants also helps in creating a successful TCoE.
- Define the Automation Approach and Tool – The next step to define the testing strategy which is going to be implemented and the processes involved in it. This also includes identifying an automation or RPA tool so that proper trainings can be given to all the resources that are defined in the previous step.
- Start Slowly and Steadily – Once everything is setup, it is very important to start the first project in a way that it should provide a definite success. Prioritizing the key projects should be the mantra. This can be achieved by making the resources understand about the common organizational goals instead of personal goals to be achieved.
- Document the Processes once built – Encourage yourself to document your current tools, KPIs, processes, and methodologies. Ensure that the expectations are properly documented, and a document repository should be in place is for future reference.
- Communicate the Success across the organization – The final step is to communicate your success stories to others in the organization. The pointers might include how cost savings were done, how efficiency of resources has increased, how faster innovation is achieved, etc. This will certainly help in gaining confidence from the management and obtain momentum for future projects.
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