All projects have a testing phase. Unfortunately, testing is very rarely given the priority it needs. As a result, not only are there delays in implementation, but a project never reaches its full potential. More worryingly, rushed testing may cause issues for both organizations and their customers either immediately or down the line.
Poorly integrated or rushed testing during project implementation is one of the biggest bottlenecks (if not the biggest) for getting solutions into production as quickly as possible. But there is a way to alleviate this: A proper testing process in an organization not only succeeds in rapid deployment, but also reduces risk and cost.
Implementing testing the right way avoids some of the biggest issues plaguing projects today, allowing organizations to reach their full potential and keep their customers (and employees) happy.
Organizations have always needed to adapt, but to thrive and compete in today’s cutthroat world demands resilience, slack, and quicker supply chain adjustments. Proper project planning — and testing — is the backbone of making sure organizations excel at what they do best.
When testing is deprioritized, everyone suffers: Teams, organizations, customers, and their customers all bear the brunt of poor planning. And given how increasingly crucial IT infrastructure is to a functioning society, functionality shortcuts can’t be afforded.
But it doesn’t need to be this way. Organizations that have figured out the importance of testing — throughout the whole lifecycle of a project — are thriving as a result.
Failing to properly plan and test can result in significant risk and financial losses. Ensure successful project implementation; avoid these seven drawbacks that occur when organizations fail to prioritize testing.
1. Necessary Updates Are More Disruptive
Every company has systems and on-prem infrastructure that they may have been using for decades. The rise of cloud is now making upgrades ever more urgent.
No longer is there the luxury of avoiding necessary updates. When the time for them does finally come — and come they shall — they’ll be that much more disruptive. Attempting to delay the inevitable doesn’t work — especially for business-critical infrastructure and systems.
As the old proverb goes, a stitch in time saves nine. Test properly today, and avoid overly disruptive updates when they can no longer be avoided.
2. Companies That Don’t Provide Ongoing Updates Die
If organizations can count on anything (especially for SaaS), it’s change. Change is coming quicker and with greater frequency. Customer demands and expectations are rising. This means greater pressure to provide more regular updates — that function properly.
Today’s technology curve demands more frequent and rigorous testing of more updates. Organizations not releasing constant updates are at a competitive disadvantage, and end up dealing with the fallout later on.
Thankfully, automated testing is less of a burden on resources than hiring a full testing team. With the right regimen in place, organizations can not just survive, but thrive.
3. Less Change Increases Risk
A typical waterfall approach comes, for many, with fear of change. A company that’s had a stable implementation doesn’t want to go near change in case something goes wrong. Then routine maintenance delays become habitualized. Organizations with this mindset proudly adopt the adage, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
However, the problem with this approach is that after five years and much delay, the system is inherently broken and it does need fixing. What could’ve been an unobtrusive patch is now a new, major project for an organization — with greater cost and risk. Aligning people and capital disrupts other ongoing projects and regular business functions.
Companies would often like to change but are held back by risk aversion. But more incremental updates actually reduce overall risk. And if it can’t be avoided, is it not better to move ahead as soon as the need is identified?
4. Workflow Bottlenecks Increase
The number one bottleneck for rapid solution deployment is a badly implemented testing phase (generally at the end). More critically, organizations already know this.
The problem is that regardless of how well-intentioned project implementation is, typical life cycles leave them until the end of the process, which ultimately delays the project overall. Pushing testing to the eleventh hour creates problems that ripple through the supply chain.
By testing earlier in the implementation cycle, defects are spotted long before the very end. Because testing is integrated as a fundamental part of the process from the very start, there’s less cleaning up at the end with project-stalling bottlenecks.
5. Miscommunication and Assumptions Are More Prevalent
Miscommunication is rife across industries — the largest enterprises are composed of so many organizations that it’s often unavoidable.
Sometimes, the actual implementation of the changes is what highlights miscommunication and assumptions plaguing project implementation. Avoiding changes and testing creates a higher risk for more miscommunication and assumptions.
Reducing miscommunication and assumptions earlier in the process with automated testing — using a commonly understood framework — significantly minimizes cost.
Not testing in this way (or at all) has the reverse effect, and there’s far more room for project fragmentation and delay.
6. Feedback From Users Is Slower
If implementing changes gives quicker user feedback for further improvement, complacency or procrastination on this means more critical system changes, additional requirements, and greater likelihood of misunderstanding hindering projects and updates.
Better iterations based on user feedback requires better budgeting, planning, and execution of projects.
If collecting user feedback is a slow process, this has a knock-on effect on future iterations, and — in turn — deployment velocity. Automated testing helps speed up the feedback process because of earlier implementation.
7. Resource Allocation Is Suboptimal
Organizations that don’t test — either automated or at all — are not using resources effectively.
Time, money, and attention are all diverted toward fixing problems that could’ve been avoided earlier in the process simply through proper planning.
By using automated testing, resources are allocated appropriately, projects run more smoothly, and cycle time is shorter. Risk and cost are also reduced, allowing organizations to focus efforts and resources on bigger issues.
Automate Testing and Minimize Cost and Risk
Enterprises suffer from high cost and risk exposure by not prioritizing testing during project implementation. Automated testing offers the ideal solution to integrating this crucial element of project planning and ultimate deployment to the foreground.
Putting off testing until the end of a project leads to detrimental cost impact and greater risk. When organizations improve their processes with proper testing and feedback systems in place, they eliminate avoidable problems later in the cycle.
Automated testing means faster increments in the users’ hands with more feedback for further improvements and faster cycle times. Organizations reduce risk and cost, and flourish as a result. Instead of just focusing on business risk, they can focus on business growth.