The need to implement large, mission-critical systems in an environment driven by short timelines and tight budgets has led to testing and development methods that deliver business value quickly.

These methods apply speed and incremental learning with comprehensive up-front planning to deliver smaller, fully-tested functional units of work in significantly less time than through a classic waterfall approach.

According to an IBM System Science Institute report, it is 15 times costlier to fix defects in the test phase of a waterfall project because testing occurs later in the project development lifecycle.

Shift Left testing avoids cost overruns and project delays. It uses an iterative approach that breaks down development and test activities into smaller functional units of work, uncovering and addressing issues earlier in the timeline rather than at the end of the project. Shift Left testing also compresses project timelines by enabling smaller hyper-focused teams to work in parallel.

It is 15 times costlier to fix defects in the test phase of a waterfall project because testing occurs later in the project development lifecycle.

— IBM System Science Institute report

Iterative approach

Iterative development and testing methods break down the development of large applications into smaller pieces; designing, developing and testing in repeated cycles to deliver predictable value over time. This allows testing and validation of new and modified functionality at or near the point at which they have been developed—a primary benefit of an iterative methodology—which shifts testing to the left in the project timeline, and helps project teams:

  • Identify gaps and defects quicker
  • Validate features sooner
  • Deliver better quality software early in the program
  • Decrease the overall program timeline
The iterative approach … helps deliver results fast, uncovering issues quickly and early in the project by organizing work into smaller functional segments.

Read the Point of View to learn about:

  1. Digital transformation in the insurance industry
  2. How the iterative approach shifts testing to the left
  3. Applying the iterative testing approach to the insurance software industry
  4. Delivering business value

Mitchel Ludwig

ALIP Professional Services Lead


Michael Butrym

Senior Manager, Engineer – Test Automation

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