December 27, 2007

...Learn TDD with Codemanship

New Year's Resolution? Raise The Quality Bar

So another Christmas whizzes by and already I'm thinking about work stuff for 2008.

Foremost on my mind is this question of why teams don't choose to create better quality software. Because it really is a choice. I've seen it happen right before my eyes: teams set out to attain some level of software quality, and they usually manage to achieve it - or at least get close. Certainly they get much better results than if they just leave it to fate.

Exhibit A: The project that started with the goal of achieving high regression test coverage, who never let it drop below 90%.

Exhibit B: The team who thought they were doing test-driven development, who discovered after 12 weeks that only 30% of their code was touched by their tests.

Conclusion: Set an explicit, realistic and testable goal, and you'll probably achieve it.

Maybe my mission for this year should be to persuade as many teams as I can to consciously set their quality bars higher.

And that means you, too. Perhaps this could be your New Year's resolution (depending on when your New Year starts, of course).

Grab a piece of paper and write down a handful of simple quality targets. They could be about better design quality, less bugs, fewer deployment issues, better ease of use, or whatever floats your boat.

Just jot them down and repeat after me:

"This year, I am going to set out to achieve..." followed by your quality goals.

And, hey - how about this for a radical idea? Why don't we actually do it? I mean, actually for real.

That would make a nice change, don't you think?
Posted 12 years, 11 months ago on December 27, 2007