In my last article, The evolution of test documentation; lessons learned from implementing Cucumber, I explained two things. Firstly, how we at Infomentum have adopted Behaviour-Driven Development to define test scenarios, and secondly, how we use Cucumber JVM as an implementation platform for running these scenarios as automated tests.
A wise man once said "If you are going to dive head-first into DevOps, better pack a parachute". Aside from the fact that this man was me, the point is still valid.
Infomentum had started maturing into a DevOps culture, which involved the developers using tools normally associated with DevOps to solve development problems. We were calling it DevOps for several years, even though the actual DevOps culture, practices and support were not in place. The changes made were effective at enhancing the development lifecycle, but were completely separate and sliced off from the rest of the organisation. This meant that infrastructure needed to catch up so that the DevOps practices could be fully utilised throughout the company. The major issue with DevOps is that it really is all or nothing; as soon as you have segregated processes and half-utilised technologies, the power of DevOps is completely negated.
Kicking off our new blog series, ‘A Day in the Life of…’ our summer interns, computer science students Pratik Jadhav and Hasan Rafiq, reveal a behind-the-scenes glimpse of an intern’s typical day.
I chose to study computer science because…
Pratik: My dad is in the IT business so it’s something I’ve been interested in from a young age. I love technology and I wanted to understand how everything works, and how to develop everything.
Hasan: Other members of my family are in IT so I always knew about it. At first, I was going to go into dentistry, but I tried it out and I couldn’t see myself looking into other people’s mouths for the rest of my life! So I knew then that I wanted to go into computer science.
The old way
I'm going to let you in on a secret. I learnt my trade in a traditional software testing consultancy - I'm talking a waterfall approach to test planning, test case definition and test scripting. Over the last 5 years at Infomentum, I've evolved and have worked hard to optimise Infomentum's testing practices to suit our agile development environment.
The fun side of cultural change
You’ll remember that last week I discussed the crucial need for a cultural change in how we dealt with time logging. After the CX team’s thorough research, we were ready to take the findings – and our ideas – to our board of directors.
Hint: you'll need to read part 1 first for this post to make sense.
Phase 2: Imagine
The CX team got together to discuss the problems and carry out an internal ideation workshop to tackle them. We knew that we had 3 key tasks:
- Improve people’s knowledge of why time logging is important
- Create a culture of time logging as a habit; and
- Make the systems they needed to use simpler and clearer while having less of them!
It had been coming for a long time…
At the end of every month, developers scrambled to complete their timesheets, while the operations team were breathing down their necks, threatening them with sticks to get it done - and done right. The developers were left wondering why operations wanted their time logs so desperately. Surely they already knew what they had been working on? The operations team were scratching their heads as to why the developers didn’t do it; they had been reminded at the end of every month like clockwork, yet every month the same story. It was hugely frustrating for both sides, and was approaching boiling point. As soon as the Customer Experience team had a break between projects, we knew this was a top internal issue that had to be solved.
I’ve wanted to write something about Infomentum's scrum board since its inception in late 2012. Now seemed as good a time as any to share the story...
During an end of sprint retrospective, one of our developers Jakub said “I'm bored of the board.” That didn’t surprise me.
In the words of Annie Dillard, “If we are blinded by darkness, we are also blinded by light”. Paradoxically, being in the light and having too many ideas can be as fruitless as being in the dark and having none. These were the opening words of Professor Verganti’s talk at Oracle’s Modern Business Experience London conference, which caught my attention. Two minutes in, I had my notepad out. For a long time, I had been a believer of ‘the more, the merrier’ when it comes to ideas, and had somehow paid no attention to how that compromises quality and value.
Infomentum is proud to announce it has achieved the internationally recognised certification of ISO 27001, establishing it as one of the leaders in its field.
We decided to seek the ISO 27001 certification to validate our high standards of best practice in protecting assets. The independent assessment was conducted by the British Assessment Bureau, a leading certification body, and demonstrated our commitment to keeping data, staff and premises secure.