TestCon Europe 2019

Torstein Skarra

Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV), Norway


Head of Test Centre of Excellence


From Waterfall to Agile: 7 tips for Transforming Test Organization

NAV is the conglomerate for governmental services in Norway, handling by itself what neighbouring countries has set up 12 different government institutions or more to handle. One third of Norway’s BNP flows through our IT systems. 19 000 employees and several million citizens use our systems every day. Moving from project based waterfall and six releases per year, to agile cross functions autonomous teams with several releases per day, per team, is a story worth telling. This story takes on the perspective of the testers and the test managers, as well as the whole Test Centre of Excellence.

When changing how we work, its all about envisioning the goals, focus on success factors and then surviving the transit. Some “truths” are left behind, together with skills, methods and tools, and new truths are created as agile skills grow. This talk is about the 7 most important success factors we focus on, and their corresponding truths. It also addresses a few irresolvable paradoxes, like: should we have testers or not, is test a distributed capability or is it a cross-company function, are the teams fully autonomous in choosing tools for testing or do we need some centralised governance.

Takeaways from this talk:
-7 important focus areas for succeeding with moving to agile in large organizations
-How the Test Centre of Excellency at NAV worked to transform skillset and employees to handle the transition without loosing staff
-Reflections on handling some of the paradoxes one faces when in this transition

Session Keywords
Organization Transformation