Our corporation has, up until this point, largely lacked a 'quality mentality' of any kind. From no testers, they went to two testers - but 5 or 6 product teams still rely on a mix of developer and business user testing. The lack of quality assurance is showing badly on those teams, which have acquired mounds of technical debt. Yes, there are other problems as well, but the lack of QA is one of the clearest and most actionable issues.

A new CIO is trying to build an appropriately sized formal testing team with strong, healthy test processes and good automation skills (since we need to be able to test for multiple products efficiently). There's a good chance that I will end up with responsibility for doing much of the actual work of designing and implementing the specifics of the general ideas that we come up with together, so I want to make sure we come up with good ideas. I feel like I could do a better job if I do some reading beforehand on test management, hiring, processes, and integrating a new QA team in with a pre-existing development team, especially in Agile environments.

What books, blogs, articles, or other resources on these topics have you seen?

ETA: Siva pointed out that this could be best viewed in terms of a roadmap. So add in "developing a test team roadmap proposal".

  • 1
    I don't like answering my own questions, but there are two books that I'd say fit into this category that might be useful for anyone else with a similar question: Agile Testing, and Lessons Learned in Software Testing. Commented Oct 5, 2011 at 15:31
  • 2
    Managing the Test People book Commented Oct 6, 2011 at 8:06
  • Sounds familiar. Want to give me a shout? I don't have answers, but I'm a year further down the road, and may be able to give you useful questions.
    – testerab
    Commented Oct 6, 2011 at 23:46
  • @testerab, I'll get in touch with you over the next couple of days on Software Testing Club. I'd love to chat about your experiences w/ this. Commented Oct 7, 2011 at 17:42
  • Ethel it sounds like you have great answers already. I just want to say how pleased I am that your new CIO is pro-SQA to the point of actually investing in the testing team (time, resources, etc). I would say upper management buy-in is over half the battle to quality improvement, and you guys have it. I hope his enthusiasm for SQA and testing is contagious. Commented Oct 14, 2011 at 16:18

3 Answers 3


My perspective is - This question is more related to identifying charter/vision for the team based on the current state of the Team

  • You have to assess your current test process, tools, bugs, automation, product quality to arrive at areas of improvements

Your proposal for roadmap would cover below aspects

Roadmap for Team

  • The team should have a roadmap to define
    • Where do we stand at this point in terms of Quality
    • What are our goals in the next 3~6 months for automation, reducing bugs
    • Test Scenarios coverage / Test Estimation Process / Improving Test Estimation Accuracy from current estimates
    • Clear roadmap to achieve this in terms of
      • Initiatives
      • Technical Trainings
      • Tools Adoption
      • Process Changes
  • 2
    Thanks, Siva, this is extremely helpful. Up until now, I haven't really been able to work out what I want to have in hand, but now you've given me a goal: I want to have a list of questions that we need to answer to develop a roadmap, and some suggested answers to those questions. Commented Oct 5, 2011 at 15:23

My roadmap is:

  • Agile

    • What is the ticket (feature/chore/bug) workflow and how does QA fit in?
    • Have QA present at grooming
    • Have QA present at the daily standup
    • Have a step for QA to pair with developers on tests plans before development
    • Have a step for QA to sign off on tickets before considered complete
    • Define how QA record bugs
    • Define how are bugs triaged
    • Define how QA interact with the product manager and with customers
    • Determine the human resourcing plan and ratio of devs to QAs
    • Follow the book "Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams"
  • Non-Agile

    • How detailed are the specifications
    • How regulated is the environment and what are the quality requirements

Once I have a good sense for all the above I would move to focus more generally on how to build a good development team using resources such as http://www.6fusion.com/2013/05/31/how-to-build-a-kick-ass-development-team/ which focuses on empowerment and trust. Also, see https://www.atlassian.com/agile/teams/ for a focus on trust and good engineering practices. See http://www.infoq.com/articles/coding-culture for more focus on the people and the team.


This is something that I've completed several times within my testing career; and something that I've done with my current employer; In fact, I'm preparing to put together our 2nd 2-year roadmap for Testing Services (name of the team).

I'd be more than happy to bounce ideas around with you if you want?

  • 3
    Can you share your ideas in public here?
    – dzieciou
    Commented Oct 13, 2014 at 19:17

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