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December 04, 2014
I'm Back!
By: Lauren Turner
It’s been quite a while since I last posted and so much has happened since! I was expecting to roll onto a new project around Easter time, but was told I was a valuable member of the team and was requested to stay on until the end of the post go live support release. 8 overnight deployments later, I am still here! It is the best feeling in the world knowing that you are respected by so many different people, managers and even senior managers and that you have a significant impact on such an amazing client.

I spent a significant amount of time training a new team member. He had previous knowledge of the project and had been transferred from a different team, but had no experience in test or how to use any of the client systems. I spent around 2 weeks teaching him everything he needed to know and within a month, the two of us were able to pro-actively work together in order to execute approximately 75 scripts over 2 days! When PGLS finished, the two of us were transferred to a mini project, where we were required to test a new build for one of the clients’ existing systems. We were required to write the test scripts, test the system, raise defects where necessary, liaise with the 3rd party who built the upgrade to get the defects fixed, re-test the defects and regression test, all within a 3 week time frame. It was extremely important to complete all of our tasks on time, as this was being rolled out to over 750 stores! And what a success it was! We received lots of positive feedback regarding the new upgrade and got a shout out in the client newsletter commenting about our hard work!

I was lucky enough to take a 2 week holiday shortly after, where I travelled around North East America/Canada. Starting in New York, I paid a visit to Buffalo, Niagara Falls, Toronto, Montreal, Stowe, and Boston before heading back to New York. It was a well-deserved break and who would have thought I would have been given the opportunity to visit the Ben & Jerry’s factory as well as munch my way through a 20 scoop bucket of ice cream! (Not to myself of course!)


Back to reality, back to the next release! I had received an email when I had arrived back in London informing me that I had been moved to the next release on the project. I had been specifically requested by a manager to work with them – which is always nice to know!

The last 3 months I have been working on release 2.6, which was due to go live after a rather large release 2. Release 2.6 was a mixture of change requests and current production defects. Working in a test role, you hear the words ‘change request’ quite a lot! A change request is a proposal for an alteration of a system which is not in the current requirements agreement. The client must pay for this extra work if the proposal is accepted. I worked very closely with our offshore test team in Bangalore, to begin the test preparation – test conditions, scenarios and scripts. It was also my responsibility to help get the test environment up and running and to work with the data team to get our data set up correctly. In order for release 2.6 to go live, we had to expand our team as I was the only tester at this point! My next job was to share all my knowledge with 4 new interns and 1 new graduate, all of who were going to be involved with this release.

We had some tough times ahead of us, including environment outages, deployments to our test environment that failed, team illnesses, weekend working and a lot of late nights. But the overall outcome meant that our release went live on time and as a result, a very happy client! I am personally extremely proud of how quickly our new team members were able to get up to speed with everything going on as well as learning how to use all the different client systems. It can be quite difficult, especially if you are not a technical person, but each person jumped at every single hurdle to get the job done. A few of the interns will be moving on to a new role shortly, as they are required to work on 2 different projects throughout their placement and they will be greatly missed!

On the lead up to Christmas, we are all supporting release 2 and 2.6 post go live support. This involves running several different regression packs and current production defects within our test environment, in order to get the appropriate fixes deployed to production – ensuring we don’t break anything else in the process! We have our Christmas party next week which includes a sit down dinner, awards and a disco. My team is also organising an indoor skiing trip followed by dinner at our favourite Indian restaurant (they do 2 for 1 cocktails 24/7 for us, can’t get better than that!) to say a farewell to our leaving interns.

After Christmas, I am scheduled to work on the next release – R2.7 – until March 2015. I wonder if I will be extended past this date too!? :)

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