DevOps is killing QA. Really?
First published 09/06/2016
I read a fairly, let's say, challenging, article on the DevOps.com website here: http://devops.com/2016/06/07/devops-killed-qa/
It's a rather poor, but sadly typical, misrepresentation or let's be generous miunderstanding of the "state of the industry". The opening comment gives you the gist.
"If you work in software quality assurance (QA), it’s time to find a new job."
Apparently DevOps is the 'next generation of agile development ... and eliminates the need for QA as a separate entity'. OK maybe DevOps doesn't mandate or even require independent test teams or testers so much. But it does not say testing is not required. Whatever.
There then follows a rather 'common argument' - I'd say eccentric - view of DevOps at the centre of a Venn diagram. He then references somene elses' view that suggests DevOps QA is meant to prevent defects rather than find them but with all due respect(!) both are wrong. Ah, now we get to the meat. Nearly.
The next paragraph conflates Continuous Delivery (CD), Continuous Integration and the 'measurement of quality'. Whatever that is.
"You cannot have any human interaction if you want to run CD."
"The developers now own the responsibility rather than a separate entity within the organization"
Right. (Nods sagely)
"To run a proper DevOps operation, you cannot have QA at all"
That's that then. But there's more!
"So, what will happen to all of the people who work in QA? One of the happiest jobs in the United States might not be happy for long as more and more organizations move to DevOps and they become more and more redundant."
Happy? Er, what? (Oh by the way, redundant is a boolean IMHO).
Then we have some interesting statistics from a website http://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/15-1199.01 I can't say I know the site or the source of data well. But it is entirely clear that the range of activities of ISTQB qualified testers have healthy futures. In the nomenclature of the labels for each activitiy the outlook is 'Bright' or 'Green'. I would have said, at least in a DevOps context that their prospects were less than optimal, but according to the author's source, prospects are blooming. Hey ho. Quote a source that contradicts one's main thesis. Way to go!
But, hold on - there really is bad news ...
"However, the BLS numbers are likely too generous because the bureau does not yet recognize “DevOps” as a separate profession at all"
So stats from an obviously spurious source have no relevance at all. That's all right then.
And now we have the killer blow. Google job search statistics. Da dah dahhhhh!
"As evidence, just look at how the relative number of Google searches in Google Trends for “sqa jobs” is slowly declining while the number for “devops jobs” is rapidly increasing:"
And here we have it. The definitive statistics that prove DevOps is on the rise and QA jobs are collapsing!
"For QA, the trend definitely does not look good."
So. That's that. The end of QA. Of Testing. Of our voice of reason in a world of madness.
Or is it? Really?
I followed the link to the Google stats. I suggest you do the same. I entered 'Software Testing Jobs' as a search term to be added and compared on the graph and... voila! REDEMPTION!!!
Try it yourself, add a search term to the analysis. Here is the graph I obtained. I suggest you do the same. Here's is my graph:
Now, our American cousins tend to call testers and testing - QA. We can forgive them, I'm sure. But I know the term testers is more than popular in IT circles over there. So think on this:
The ratio of Testers v DevOps jobs is around five to one. Thats testers to ALL JOBS IN DEVOPS IS FIVE TO ONE.
ARE WE CLEAR?
So. A conclusion.
- Don't pay attention to blogs of people with agendas or who are clearly stupid.
- Think carefully about the apparent sense but clear nonsense that people put on blogs.
- Be confident that testing, QA or whatever you call it is as important now as it was forty years ago and always will be.
It's just that the people who do testing might not be called testers. Forever.
Over and out.
Tags: #testing #DevOps #QA #DevOpsKillingQA