Self Appraisal for Managers & Team Leads – Who Manage the Software Testing Functions
Manager’s job is to obtain results through the work of others. Everything a manager does can be categorized in one of the following areas of responsibility.
1) Leadership: It involves pointing the way and motivating individuals to seek common goals. It includes setting objectives, expectations, and plans.
2) Support: It involves facilitating the workers’ performances. It includes training, work methods, tools, and general assistance.
3) Control: It involves ensuring that the organization stays on the intended track. It includes monitoring, follow-up, reporting, evaluating,
and redirecting.A balanced program of action is essentially required in all three areas given above to effect any significant or lasting organizational change. It is insufficient to try to implement a new testing technique by providing only training and technical support and then standing back and waiting for the new method to come out with magical results.
Importance of Testing to a Testing Manager:
Testing is of special importance to every manager because it is the process by which product quality is made visible and tangible. The purpose of testing is to measure quality. It is impossible to manage something you can’t see or evaluate. Testing is not a responsibility that can be fulfilled through interest or desire or encouragement. Direct management action is necessary and expected!
How does the manager approach these personal accountabilities and responsibilities for testing? Actions are needed in each of the three management spheres.
How Testing Managers should check their own effectiveness?
Managers who claim to be managing the testing function should pose the following 13 questions to themselves for assessment of performance under the three broad areas of responsibility described above.
|Management||a) Whether your plans address the testing?
b) Are you aware of responsibilities of different people?
c) Whether everyone knows your testing policy?
|Motivation||a) Whether your company offers incentive to persons doing quality work?
b) Whether you encourage your people to get involved in training programs aimed at teaching testing methods?
|Methodology||a) Whether your testing methods are properly documented and your people are adequately trained to use them?
b) Whether you are aware of different new testing techniques & you are serious in implementing them?
|Mechanization||a) Whether you are providing adequate equipment & hardware for supporting the testing?
b) Whether you are providing adequate software testing aids & tools?
c) Whether you evaluate the automated testing facilities on continual ?
|Measurement||a) Whether you keep constant track of errors, faults, & failures?
b) Whether you are aware of the testing costs?
c) Whether you measure the testing performance quantitatively?
Each of the above questions lays emphasis on you as a manager. You should try to answer them as honestly as possible irrespective of the fact whether you follow every point or not in practice.
A score of 10 or more clear yes answers indicates that you are seriously working to meet your personal accountability. For any question you answer negatively you should ask yourself one additional question: What are you doing about it?
Each one of the above questions focuses on personal responsibilities that require action from the individual testing managers for the organization’s testing practices to remain in an excellent shape.
An expert on R&D, Online Training and Publishing. He is M.Tech. (Honours) and is a part of the STG team since inception.