|By Mush Honda||
|October 22, 2013 03:15 PM EDT||
Contrary to common misconceptions, offshore product development (OPD) of software involves a lot more than just cutting costs and accelerating time-to-market. Savvy companies know OPD enables them to improve the quality of their software.
Outsourcing software development and independent software testing is a great way for companies to reduce cost, improve quality, cut cycle times, eliminate the need for in-house skills, and increase efficiency.
Unfortunately, far too many companies focus excessively on the benefits of cost savings - and end up paying the price in poor quality software and/or poor testing results.
However, companies that approach offshore product development as an opportunity can improve productivity and software quality by tapping into the skills, expertise and technology that they lack in-house.
The digitization of business has created an increasing reliance on software for internal and customer-facing activities, which in turn has elevated the importance on testing as part of the software development process.
A recent report from analyst company Pierre Audoin Consultants (PAC) supports this assertion. Ninety-one percent of IT departments interviewed by PAC said testing is one of the most important tasks that can be enhanced through outsourcing. The report also revealed that 75% of the companies interviewed already use testing vendors with onshore and offshore capabilities.
Outsourcing should be viewed as a way to improve software quality. Many people simply measure quality using traditional metrics such as open/active defects. To derive maximum benefits from outsourcing you need to analyze the business impact and the return on investment from using your testing team.
To ensure software quality, ask this question of your in-house test team and contract resources: How is your combined testing team helping you keep and satisfy your current customers, and attract more?
To ensure an adequate focus on the quality of the delivered software product, you should also ask:
- Can I reduce the current cost of quality by 20% or more through a handful of ‘quick wins'?
- Can I improve quality with my current project budgets?
- Is my current testing solution able to do more?
Outsourcing activities to experts rather than low-cost offshore firms will help your organization proactively answer the above questions effectively.
In his paper ‘Roadmap to Successful Outsourcing', IEEE editor Wolfgang Strigel pointed out that outsourcing allows organizations to:
- Realize significant cost-savings for resources. Businesses can take advantage of global resources to cut costs while retaining the permanent foundation of expertise in those areas that represent their competitive differentiator.
- Use their core staff for strategic work while contracting other activities. This improves company focus and increases margins by using specialty knowledge only when needed, avoiding make-work projects for in-house staff not on a mission-critical path.
- Shorten delivery cycles and get greater flexibility to ramp resources based on project needs.
- Access experts through a reliable pool of resources - to confront the challenges of having in-house experts in all areas.
Building a long-term relationship with an outsourcing partner does not have to be dramatic. Serious partners will want to participate in services that can be verified by performance, while they work on and improve the current projects and process frameworks.
Starting with a sample or ‘pilot project' of a controlled size and scope will allow you to measure the results and judge the potential value of the service provider for future projects.
To maximize the value of outsourcing, you need to think about a tailored solution for your company that uses the following types of testing methods and techniques as part of the overall testing methodology:
- Black Box Testing
- Compatibility Testing
- Integration Testing
- Regression Testing
- Performance Testing
- Scalability/Load Testing
- Security Testing
Your outsourcing partner should also understand the impact of manual efforts associated with test execution during a mission-critical project. Since manual test cases are a way of life in most organizations, your partner should have an effective way of getting manual test cases under control and automating the painfully repetitive areas of manual testing.
Equally important, your partner should be adept at defining and implementing an automation strategy - one that carefully analyzes the areas that can be automated to get maximum time saving and test coverage. This can be achieved by leveraging an ROI model (comparison of the cost of manual execution vs. the cost of automation and maintenance) as well as applying an approach to import/convert manual test cases to automation.
Finally, consider that every testing engagement should track information to measure and ensure quantifiable improvements. On a monthly, even weekly schedule, data should be collected in the following categories: application quality, test coverage, productivity, project-specific metrics, and automation metrics.
Outsourcing is rapidly creating a new competitive reality for companies, which have much to gain from global sourcing. For many companies, outsourcing has proved itself as a way to reduce operating costs and jump productivity by tapping into the skills and expertise of an outsourcing partnership.
Internet-of-Things discussions can end up either going down the consumer gadget rabbit hole or focused on the sort of data logging that industrial manufacturers have been doing forever. However, in fact, companies today are already using IoT data both to optimize their operational technology and to improve the experience of customer interactions in novel ways. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Gordon Haff, Red Hat Technology Evangelist, will share examples from a wide range of industries – includin...
Dec. 5, 2016 04:15 AM EST Reads: 1,608
Unless your company can spend a lot of money on new technology, re-engineering your environment and hiring a comprehensive cybersecurity team, you will most likely move to the cloud or seek external service partnerships. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Darren Guccione, CEO of Keeper Security, revealed what you need to know when it comes to encryption in the cloud.
Dec. 5, 2016 04:00 AM EST Reads: 4,676
We're entering the post-smartphone era, where wearable gadgets from watches and fitness bands to glasses and health aids will power the next technological revolution. With mass adoption of wearable devices comes a new data ecosystem that must be protected. Wearables open new pathways that facilitate the tracking, sharing and storing of consumers’ personal health, location and daily activity data. Consumers have some idea of the data these devices capture, but most don’t realize how revealing and...
Dec. 5, 2016 04:00 AM EST Reads: 5,087
"We build IoT infrastructure products - when you have to integrate different devices, different systems and cloud you have to build an application to do that but we eliminate the need to build an application. Our products can integrate any device, any system, any cloud regardless of protocol," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 5, 2016 03:30 AM EST Reads: 934
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Dec. 5, 2016 01:30 AM EST Reads: 746
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, director/senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
Dec. 5, 2016 12:45 AM EST Reads: 1,569
In addition to all the benefits, IoT is also bringing new kind of customer experience challenges - cars that unlock themselves, thermostats turning houses into saunas and baby video monitors broadcasting over the internet. This list can only increase because while IoT services should be intuitive and simple to use, the delivery ecosystem is a myriad of potential problems as IoT explodes complexity. So finding a performance issue is like finding the proverbial needle in the haystack.
Dec. 5, 2016 12:30 AM EST Reads: 6,083
According to Forrester Research, every business will become either a digital predator or digital prey by 2020. To avoid demise, organizations must rapidly create new sources of value in their end-to-end customer experiences. True digital predators also must break down information and process silos and extend digital transformation initiatives to empower employees with the digital resources needed to win, serve, and retain customers.
Dec. 5, 2016 12:15 AM EST Reads: 1,159
"Once customers get a year into their IoT deployments, they start to realize that they may have been shortsighted in the ways they built out their deployment and the key thing I see a lot of people looking at is - how can I take equipment data, pull it back in an IoT solution and show it in a dashboard," stated Dave McCarthy, Director of Products at Bsquare Corporation, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 4, 2016 10:45 PM EST Reads: 1,001
Fact is, enterprises have significant legacy voice infrastructure that’s costly to replace with pure IP solutions. How can we bring this analog infrastructure into our shiny new cloud applications? There are proven methods to bind both legacy voice applications and traditional PSTN audio into cloud-based applications and services at a carrier scale. Some of the most successful implementations leverage WebRTC, WebSockets, SIP and other open source technologies. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Da...
Dec. 4, 2016 10:45 PM EST Reads: 1,675
Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more business becomes digital the more stakeholders are interested in this data including how it relates to business. Some of these people have never used a monitoring tool before. They have a question on their mind like “How is my application doing” but no id...
Dec. 4, 2016 06:30 PM EST Reads: 2,179
@GonzalezCarmen has been ranked the Number One Influencer and @ThingsExpo has been named the Number One Brand in the “M2M 2016: Top 100 Influencers and Brands” by Onalytica. Onalytica analyzed tweets over the last 6 months mentioning the keywords M2M OR “Machine to Machine.” They then identified the top 100 most influential brands and individuals leading the discussion on Twitter.
Dec. 4, 2016 06:30 PM EST Reads: 2,036
As data explodes in quantity, importance and from new sources, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and cloud environments grow with it. Managing data includes protecting it, indexing and classifying it for true, long-term management, compliance and E-Discovery. Commvault can ensure this with a single pane of glass solution – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enter...
Dec. 4, 2016 06:00 PM EST Reads: 1,545
"IoT is going to be a huge industry with a lot of value for end users, for industries, for consumers, for manufacturers. How can we use cloud to effectively manage IoT applications," stated Ian Khan, Innovation & Marketing Manager at Solgeniakhela, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 4, 2016 04:15 PM EST Reads: 4,212
"We're a cybersecurity firm that specializes in engineering security solutions both at the software and hardware level. Security cannot be an after-the-fact afterthought, which is what it's become," stated Richard Blech, Chief Executive Officer at Secure Channels, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 4, 2016 04:15 PM EST Reads: 626
Information technology is an industry that has always experienced change, and the dramatic change sweeping across the industry today could not be truthfully described as the first time we've seen such widespread change impacting customer investments. However, the rate of the change, and the potential outcomes from today's digital transformation has the distinct potential to separate the industry into two camps: Organizations that see the change coming, embrace it, and successful leverage it; and...
Dec. 4, 2016 03:00 PM EST Reads: 3,262
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, discussed the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
Dec. 4, 2016 02:15 PM EST Reads: 2,015
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
Dec. 4, 2016 02:00 PM EST Reads: 617
We are always online. We access our data, our finances, work, and various services on the Internet. But we live in a congested world of information in which the roads were built two decades ago. The quest for better, faster Internet routing has been around for a decade, but nobody solved this problem. We’ve seen band-aid approaches like CDNs that attack a niche's slice of static content part of the Internet, but that’s it. It does not address the dynamic services-based Internet of today. It does...
Dec. 4, 2016 02:00 PM EST Reads: 947
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @ThingsExpo New York Call for Papers is now open.
Dec. 4, 2016 02:00 PM EST Reads: 1,911