Monday, May 10, 2010

Eliminate Waste – Key to Effective Testing

"Eliminate Waste" is the fundamental principle of LEAN.

Waste is defined as anything that does not create value for a customer.

It's essential to learn to identify waste if you are to eliminate waste.

If there is a way to do without it, it is waste!

The 7 wastes of software development are:

  1. Partially Done Work
  2. Extra Processes
  3. Extra Features
  4. Task Switching
  5. Waiting
  6. Motion
  7. Defects

My translation to testing:

  1. Partially Done Work
  2. Extra Processes
  3. Unneeded Test Infrastructure
  4. Task Switching
  5. Waiting
  6. Motion
  7. Passing Tests

Unneeded test infrastructure encompasses extra test features/tools that are not utilized in the test effort but are nice to have (kind of like extra features, they are nice to have but not used). Similar to software development, it is best to not commit to extra test infrastructure features until they are actually needed.

Passing tests do not add value to testing when the main objective of testing is to find defects. Passing tests do not find defects.

Eliminating waste increases time available for activities that do provide value and allow testing to be as effective as it can be.

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