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Centralized UAT team
Hi all- I did not see any topics related to this in my search, so I apologize if I missed this in a previous discussion. In my past role UAT was performed by BA's in the business unit that were assigned to a project, but now I have been asked to manage a centralized team of UAT testers. These are former end-users who have now been converted to full time UAT. My first question is if anyone here has any experience with being in a similar situation and how did it work? My other questions are:
- Since this team is now dedicated to UAT, what types of measures should be used to manage their effectiveness? In my past UAT was just a side activity done by the BA's, so I am not sure what is the best way to measure performance for UAT only.
- I am nervous that after a long enough period of time out of the business the team will lose it's end user perspective. What are some good ways to ensure that they stay 'in touch'? I have considered job shadowing, loaners, rotations, training, etc, and am wondering if anyone else has any good ideas.
- If you are a QA manager and you had access to a centralized UAT team, what are some things that the UAT team could do to make your job easier/more effective? Is there anything about a centralized UAT team that would make you nervous?
Any input is greatly appreciated!
I've never encountered a centralized UAT team concept like this.
Sorry, I can't be of help other than to offer that it seems a rather strange concept to me.
In all my experience, proper UAT is performed by Users, who are expected to end up with a formal Acceptance, once they have completed their Testing.
In your case, has the user community (or their representative) ceded the acceptance decision to this new team of former users?
Thanks for responding, Joe. I agree that the concept is unusual. The thought was that this would remove the need to constantly train associates from the business on how to design and execute test cases (this is a large company with a neverending supply of software development and maintenance), and to have people with enough experience in their respective business to properly represent the end users. The team reviews the requirements, designs and executes the test cases, reports defects, retests as needed, and then makes a go/no-go recommendation to the business representative. The business rep has formal acceptance authority.
I think it's an interesting approach to acceptance testing, but I'm not sure how successful it will be in the long run. I was hoping that someone else may have seen or done something similar...
I am currently a centralized UAT team manager. One measure is on the number/severity of post-production defects. The entire staff except for myself were users of the system prior to coming on the UAT team. for major releases we do work hand in hand with the users for test scenarios but I actually certify that each project in the release has been successfully certified. Of course if there are any open defects without a resolution than the project is not certified and the users can accept risk or decline the release. Hope this helps
Thanks for the replies!
Joe- the user community takes our recommendation, but the responsibility for acceptance still falls upon them. It's a strange concept to me, too. I can't help but see a path where ultimately the UAT team loses its 'business user' focus and either becomes an outdated version of UAT or a duplicate of the team doing integration testing. I'm trying to figure out a way to prevent that.
Susan- So glad someone else is in a similar situation. How long has your team been together, and how do you keep them focused on the business user perspective when writing test cases?