What is digital transformation?
Did you know that out of 500 globally interviewed organizations in 2021/22, the majority said digital transformation is a tool for improving process efficiency rather than fundamental business change?
The detailed results are:
- 69% said it is process efficiency
- 23% saw it as new ways to sell products and services
- 8% said it means business model change
Nevertheless, the definition of digital transformation is that it is a company’s journey which redesigns its corporate model and incorporates modern technologies. The purpose of the transition is to improve the enterprise’s business processes and culture, as well as the overall customer experience. It includes better usage of data, newer testing approaches, and more.
In other words, it means transforming waterfall processes into agile ones to speed up one’s delivery to the end-customer.
Why digital transformation is so important
Nowadays, every successful company offers its services or products digitally. The main drive of digital transformation is to accelerate their delivery, because this is what consumers these days demand. To achieve a successful digital transformation, it is indispensable to modernize one’s testing department and put the QA specialists and testers into agile teams.
Organizations that do not follow this omnipresent trend risk losing their customers.
Culture shift and change management
Even though digital transformation in QA and testing is crucial for a company’s growth, it is undoubtably no easy process. It involves changes in culture, mindset, processes, structures, and even the whole business model. Any resistance to the adoption of new technologies and a culture shift obstructs one’s success.
Some leaderships or employees, though, do not understand why they should change their way of operating, especially if they have been achieving positive results in the past. They may feel uncertain about the new roles and responsibilities that come with digital transformation. For an efficient digital transformation journey, it is most important that everyone in the firm is open to making changes in their day-to-day work and learning new things – including QA and testing departments.
Besides clearing out that everyone is on the same page, another big challenge to overcome is poor change management. Did you know that projects with excellent change management are six times more likely to meet objectives than those with poor change management?
However, setting up a proper change management strategy is a difficult process that requires time, patience, and know-how. Therefore, seeking professional help by experienced consultants may be a good option to go for to ensure a great change management strategy.
Lack of expertise and resources
Since a major change like this is always connected to certain complexity, it is necessary to have professionals with the proper skill set and knowledge on board. Expertise in areas like analytics, cloud, and enterprise architecture is needed to properly move from waterfall to agile. Unfortunately, many companies who start their digital transformation lack knowledge of how to lead a successful transformation in QA and testing.
The reason for this is that plenty of organizations tend to underestimate the need for transformation in these two areas as well as the impact they have on the whole digital transformation journey. By ignoring the necessity to reorganize the roles and activities around quality assurance, companies doom their QA and testing groups to be perceived as bottlenecks in the whole delivery process. In reality, they are the key to a successful digital transformation journey, as they help to manage the risks that come with it and enable the teams to take appropriate action before it is too late.
To overcome the hurdle of missing expertise, organizations should first and foremost view the transformation of QA and testing as strategic investment, and act on it. This includes planning a proper budget for them and paying attention to consultancy vendors that are specialized in the agile testing methodology. Such consulting firms focus on transforming one’s QA and testing teams, and therefore successfully lead a digital transformation without sacrificing quality in any way.
As in various other areas, communication plays a very relevant role in digital transformation and can sometimes become a true challenge. Especially when it comes to the most delicate and crucial activity of a business: decision-making.
Software testers are the ones who provide stakeholders with information about their project’s quality. To ensure good quality, it is crucial to speed this process up and make it agile. The faster stakeholders know the current state of their project, the faster they can make important decisions.
Traditionally, one’s QA and testing groups operate in isolation, leading to poor, unsustainable communication, inefficient resource allocation, and excessive efforts that enormously hinder good collaboration and efficiency.
By including these teams in one’s digital transformation path, the overall organizational communication and decision-making highly improve. This ensures that QA and testing parties are in constant feedback loops with stakeholders, which leads to no chance of a communication gap. This minimizes the risk of delaying or even failing one’s journey, while assuring good quality.
What else hinders digital transformation
A digital transformation is a major challenge for the entire company, and it involves more hurdles than you might realize at first glance. Especially when QA and testing get left aside. We have witnesses such journey for ourselves quite a few times.
Challenges that come with the digital transformation of QA and testing teams and that many organizations might shy away from include uncertainty about how End-to-End testing will be managed, or how to handle test automation with different projects, and the potential of losing quality, for example. Nevertheless, we know how to overcome these challenges, and can only advise every company to take the step anyway. Otherwise, the path of digital transformation would hardly make any progress.
 according to the Digital Transformation & Cloud Survey 2021/22 by Baker McKenzie, https://www.bakermckenzie.com/-/media/files/insight/publications/2021/12/2021-digital-transformation–cloud-survey–a-wave-of-change.pdf
 according to Prosci’s 2020 Benchmarking Studies, https://www.prosci.com/resources/articles/what-is-change-management-and-how-does-it-work
 according to the Digital Talent Gap paper by Capgemini Digital Transformation Institute, https://www.capgemini.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/dti_the-digital-talent-gap_20171109.pdf