Traditionally, in the world of large scale software implementations, User Acceptance Testing (UAT) is handed over to tens if not hundreds of users, who will conduct a series of duplicate tests and raise issues in an effort to make the first release of the product perfect. Most of the users will not have been involved in the development of the product and will typically raise issues due to a lack of knowledge as oppose to an actual product development defect. The investigation, back and forth of emails and ultimate triage of issues can lengthen the time taken to deliver without resulting in a significantly better release of the product.
Whilst we approached our development work in an agile and collaborative way, with solution validation sessions, demos and working closely with the product owners and SMEs throughout, we were still approaching UAT in the traditional waterfall way and we needed a way to reduce the time taken to test in order to deliver an MVP quickly that we could release and iterate on.
We were into the second release of work with a global FS client in 2019 and the time within which we had to release the Application Portfolio Management (APM) of ServiceNow was very tight due to the legacy application going out of support. This would have meant they were operating with a high risk around the management of their application estate, and for a retail bank who leads the way in mobile banking, this was not acceptable.
The concept of Mob Testing was born on the back of reading an article about Mob Development and the way in which it can help reduce development timeframes significantly. Mob Testing is about a representative team of SME’s and users all testing on one instance at the same time solely focussed on getting an end to end product working ready for release in the shortest time possible.
The team did not have to be all around one computer, but we could be in the same location, in one room, with the developers, SMEs, Test Manager and some representative end users all collaborating, identifying real defects quickly, fixing them immediately to enable re-test, sometimes in matter of minutes.
We adopted this approach in 2019 when delivering APM, and it worked very well. In addition to delivering the solution on time the Mob Testing team described the approach as ‘great fun’, ‘a great team building opportunity’ and hugely motivational as they were able to identify and resolve real defects quickly. in record time,
Since then, we have introduced the approach to some of our other clients and they continue to use the approach when rolling out their ongoing releases of the ServiceNow platform. In a very recent HR delivery of ServiceNow Mob Testing was concluded in 2 weeks with the platform being rolled out to more than 100k users in 108 different countries and across multiple HR Processes.
We had very positive feedback and we continue to adopt this approach for the remaining releases of the delivery.
If anyone would like to know more, please reach out to me, I wouldn’t approach our testing in any other way 😊.