Creation of an effective system of immersion in a complex project by a manual tester

Customer

An American software company from California

Product

An integration telecommunications platform.

Business challenge

Our team had worked with this customer for a long time on various projects, so we had fully earned their trust.

The circumstances associated with the sales of the customer’s solutions were such that the development of a new product — an integration solution in the field of telecommunications — was initiated on an urgent basis. This product was created based on the customer’s already existing technological platform.

Our development team had to dive into the project as soon as possible, while there was no documentation or any description of the main business cases and the logic of the system. The situation was complicated not only by the most complex domain area and non-trivial architectural solutions in the existing technological platform, but also by the customer’s requirements to have a constant focus on commercially important deliveries. There was no time for pre-start activities and immersion at all.

Despite the constant pressure and multiple challenges, we realized that it would be impossible to accomplish the task if we did not master the domain area thoroughly and develop deep knowledge of the system’s features.

Our company decided to comprehensively approach the construction of an effective system for new employees’ immersion in the project. To do this, it was necessary to provide several experienced employees with all the specifics of working on the project and competently utilize the experience gained, observations, and tips for new project participants. So, we not only began to master the technological platform, go into detail, and understand the project, but also simultaneously prepared a system for effective scaling of the team. Looking ahead, we can say that the task was completely accomplished, and the speed of quality immersion of new engineers on the project increased hugely.


Technological features of the project

  • Technologically sophisticated product. The system has a complex integration logic and multiple cases for working with various types of data in countless combinations.
  • The product domain area is difficult to understand. The application performs data transfer via specialized protocols.
  • Tight deadlines. Deep immersion of the new team should not exceed 2 months.

Creation of an effective system of immersion in a complex project by a manual tester

Approaches and solutions

  • Involvement of a JazzTeam test engineer in the development of the immersion system. Our specialist had worked on the customer’s projects for quite a long time, so he deeply understood the standards and logic of the solution. He was well versed in the network standards and specialized utilities that were needed to develop the new software. In this way, the JazzTeam test engineer was able to lead the process of creating the system of immersion in the project, while simultaneously performing the function of a business analyst.
  • Preparation of a unified system of immersion in the project. To create manuals and documentation, it was necessary to understand and highlight the main types of system operation cases, to simply and easily explore the subject area of the product, and establish processes for immersion in the project. In order to achieve these objectives, the following activities were carried out:
  • Creation of a comprehensive deployment diagram that captures all interactions between parts of the system and provides details of the logic of each component.
  • Development of a document entitled, “Immersion in the subject area” containing a description of typical cases of system operation. Emphasis was placed on visualization and plain explanation of basic concepts.
  • Preparation of supporting documents for the development process (task description in a simple format, a register of questions to the customer, guidelines on system deployment: locally and in the cloud).
  • Control of compliance with all stages of immersion in the project. To achieve maximum effect in a short time, a JazzTeam manager joined the project too. His duties included recording, coordinating, and monitoring the implementation of instructions by the team.
  • Results and achievements

    • The immersion system was successfully prepared. Thanks to the accumulated knowledge in the domain area and deep understanding of the principles of the system, the JazzTeam test engineer could prepare an effective system of immersion in the project, while brilliantly coping not only with his duties, but also with the functions of a business analyst and a system administrator.
    • We managed to ensure fast immersion, which can be successfully combined with code writing. After studying the created documentation and step-by-step instructions written in plain language, new developers immerse themselves in the basics of the project from a specific domain area in just a few days. This greatly simplifies further immersion in the product and allows establishing an acceptable pace of development on the project from the first days of the new engineer’s work. In general, the time of high-quality immersion in the project was reduced from 3 months to 2 weeks.
    • The dependence on specific employees on the project was removed. The prepared documents provide an exhaustive description of the principles of the system operation. This made it possible to unify the process of immersion in the project and eliminate dependency on certain employees.

    Technologies used

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