Reading, UK
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Best Practice Consultancy

Automation Consultants’ view across the operations of many organisations gives it a rare view of different approaches to common issues, and which of them works well or less well.

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Our team are here to help you to develop best practice that can be utilised across your entire organisation.

Effective teams require effective processes, structures, tools, and procedures.

We can advise you on best practices – helping you optimise your agile test teams, implement test automation (and combine it with continuous integration), discover and fix bugs, and achieve the highest possible software quality without sacrificing time to market.

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Discover our Best Practice offerings

Best Practice in Choosing and Configuring Software Development Toolchains

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For many organisations, software development, especially web and mobile development, has moved from the back office to the front office. Software has become part of their products and services, or how those services are marketed and delivered, and not just a tool to make operations more efficient.

As organisations grow their software development teams to meet this challenge, many questions arise about which tools to use.

  • Should you stick with your existing tools or move to a new toolset?
  • Should you get the best of breed in each category of tool, or seek easier integration by using the complete toolset from a single vendor?
  • What if different teams use and like different toolsets? Should you standardise?
  • How much automation should be introduced?

We have in-depth knowledge of a wide range of tools across the development cycle, and can give impartial advice on them. Although we have partnerships with Atlassian, IBM, Micro Focus (former HP) and others, we always seek to be impartial.

Best Practice in Agile Development

For many organisations, optimising their Agile development is essential to bringing their products and services on time to market, and that is essential to their business strategy and their survival.

In setting up agile teams, may questions arise.

  • Which tools should be used? A physical whiteboard? (Bear in mind the Agile Manifesto discourages too much emphasis on tools and encourages face-to-face conversation).
  • Which methods? Scrum, Kanban, XP, BDD?
  • How should agile be scaled? What is the best size of a team and how should different teams communicate with each other?
  • How long should the iterations (in Scrum, sprints) be?
  • How should the business be structured so as to enable product owners to be empowered to make quick decisions, so that development keeps moving, while still retaining an authoritative view of what the business needs?

Automation Consultants has considerable experience in helping customers set up and optimise their agile development. Automation Consultants provides training in agile methods, and in managing projects using specific tools such as Jira Software and IBM RTC.

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Best Practice in Quality Assurance

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Quality assurance is indispensable both in software developments and in major change IT projects such as large-scale migrations and upgrades.

In software development, Quality Assurance has become agile. Testing takes place at the same time as development. The code of an iterations is normally tested within the timeframe of the iteration. Testers are embedded in the development teams and test the code almost as soon as it is developed. Tests on previous iterations are automated and re-run with every build, being triggered by the CI/CD tool (e.g. Jenkins and Bamboo – read more on Bamboo vs Jenkins).

Automation Consultants helps customers organise the testing within their agile teams so as to obtain the highest possible software quality without slowing time to market. Our services include advice on team structure, advice on tools and procedures, and help with test automation and combining it with continuous integration. A well structured agile test team is optimised to implement the well known principle that the earlier a bug is discovered, the quicker and cheaper it is to fix.

In major change, quality assurance is a balance between risk and cost. Complex, mission-critical systems must be tested exhaustively. Simpler, less important systems should still be tested, but have a lesser call on the available time and money. A key skill is in working out the scope of testing.

  • What will change as a result of the project, and what will stay the same?
  • Have every system’s interfaces and infrastructure been mapped out?

Automation Consultants can advise on how to optimise testing for every kind of major change project. We advise on how the tests should be managed, tracked and reported; how to determine the amount of testing required for each system; and whether and where to incorporate user acceptance testing into the process.

What makes us different?

Automation Consultants is able to:

Drive value
We continuously assess how we can deliver the most value to you and prioritise our work to ensure you can get the most out of Jira Align
Have proven success
We harness proven processes to maximise return on investment and consistently deliver projects to the highest standard
Promote innovation
We have a wide range of skills and experience, allowing us to approach from unique perspectives and deliver innovative solutions
Give honest advice
We won't encourage the purchase of anything we don't think is suitable for you - you can count on us to give you honest advice
Our Consultants Are
Accredited
AC hires the best talent and has an enablement-focused culture. As a result our consultants have all the requisite certifications in Jira Align
Flexible
Our consultants are able to adapt to how you operate and work seamlessly with your existing teams
Dedicated
Our consultants are passionate about the work they do and are devoted to delivering the best solution to meet your requirements

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Looking for more?

If you haven't seen exactly what you want or there is something we haven't covered - don't hesitate to get in touch with us. We're here to answer any questions you may have about Best Practice Consultancy.