BACKGROUND

This event has two tracks:

  • Agile & DevOps
  • Testing

There is a joint morning plenary session and a round table session.

Delegates may attend any sessions from across the two tracks.

Testers have always been at the coal face of ensuring that “stuff works as it should”. Is there anything different in the actual testing of new digital products, new interfaces with clients which must always provide the optimum user experience? How are testers coping? What are the stories coming in? What is working well and what can be done better?

At this event we are aiming to include many case studies as well as high quality technical/review presentations. We will also feature the popular and interactive round table discussions (each addressing a different testing topic or issue) where all participants can join in, shape their learning, share their own experiences, and hear fresh ideas.

There is also an exhibition alongside featuring leading service providers, consultants and testing tool vendors.

This conference will help you:

The Round Table session: This session is for 45 minutes. The speaker at each table will have a set theme and delegates join any table that they are interested in. This is a discussion group and so no presentation slides are necessary, but please submit a topic if you would like to chair a discussion on a topic related to Testing, Agile and DevOps.

Benefits of attending

  • Share ideas and brainstorm new approaches
  • Meet with Testing experts and professionals from your same industry areas
  • Develop and benchmark your Testing Strategies
  • Hear about new developments in Agile and DevOps
  • Learn from others’ best practices, ideas and expertise
  • Discover latest technical skills, tools, tips and tricks in the industry
  • Discussion and networking are encouraged via Q&A sessions after the presentations and during the breaks

Topics to be covered:

  • Testing: “Measure twice, cut once”
  • Continuous Testing – running tests at each stage of s/w delivery pipeline.
  • Modern Software Testing
  • Sustainable Test Automation
  • Agile frameworks provide guidance for efficient operational software
  • Adopt a “build-and-run” teams concept
  • Agile and DevOps – moving with flow based awareness
  • Automation and SAFe
  • Evolving beyond Kanban Practical Security Testing for Mobile Apps
  • Testing: One Piece of the Puzzle
  • How DevOps and Agile can help Digital Transformation
  • The agile release train and continuous integration
  • Team leadership
  • Individuals and interactions over process and tools

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Call for Participation

We are inviting speakers – thought leaders, subject experts and start up entrepreneurs – to share their knowledge and enthusiasm about their work and their vision in the field of Testing.

We understand that successful projects are written up as “White Papers”. Please share these with us. But projects that did not achieve their targets – “Black Papers” – are of interest to us too. They can be a very important topics of discussion / panels that you can present. Talk to us about both, we welcome your input.

Please complete the speaker’s response form and submit a proposal to present at this event.

Code of Conduct & Diversity

UNICOM’s Code of Conduct & Views on Diversity

We at UNICOM strive to be a leading provider of knowledge to the business community and to engage the global business community as a specialised provider of knowledge. We strive to do this maintaining a culture of co-operation, commitment and trust. We want every UNICOM conference and training day to be a safe and productive environment for everyone – a place to share research and innovation and to build professional networks. To that end, we will enforce a code of conduct throughout all our events. We expect cooperation from all participants to help ensure a safe environment for everybody.

Our approach is that our events are dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity or religion. We do not tolerate intimidation, stalking, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of sessions or events, and unwelcome physical contact or sexual attention. We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any conference venue, including talks, workshops, Twitter and other online media. Event participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the event without a refund at the discretion of the conference organisers. Please bring your concerns to the immediate attention of the event staff.

Diversity: In our endeavour to be the provider of knowledge to the business community, we understand that this depends on hearing from and listening to a variety of perspectives that come from people of all races, ethnicities, genders, ages, abilities, religions, sexual orientation, and military service. We welcome diverse speakers for all our events, we do not always fully achieve this goal, but it is an ongoing process.

Read more…

2019 Programme

Joint session

09:15 – Keynote: A Bluffer’s Guide to Technical Debt for other peopleRead More
Steve Freeman, Zuhlke Engineering Limited

We need to explain Technical Debt to people who are not technical, partly so that they can make better choices because they understand the real trade-offs, and partly to so that we understand it better too. Some of the tension between trying to get product out and developing something you can live with is an essential feature of trying to do anything new, but some is the result of a mismatch of understanding between Product and Development. The metaphor of debt does not really convey the risks that arise from poor technical quality. Instead, I will introduce some other metaphors for looking at technical risk that we think match the problem more effectively and propose some strategies to help product and development teams approach a solution.

09:55 – Questions & discussions

10:00 – Keynote: Choose Your WoW! A Disciplined Agile Delivery Handbook for Optimizing Your Way of Working (WoW)Read More
Mark Lines, Managing Partner / DA Fellow, Disciplined Agile

We like to say that agile teams own their own process by choosing their way of working, their “WoW.” This of course is easier said than done because there are several aspects to WoW. First, our team needs to know how to choose the appropriate lifecycle for the situation that we face. Should we take a Scrum-based approach, a lean/Kanban-based approach, a continuous delivery approach, or an exploratory/lean startup approach? Second, what practices should the team adopt? How do they fit together? When should we apply them? Third, what artifacts should the team create? When should they be created? To what level of detail? Finally, how do we evolve our WoW as we experiment and learn?

There are several strategies that we could choose to follow when we tailor and evolve our WoW. One approach is to bootstrap our WoW, to figure it out on our own. This works, but it is a very slow and expensive strategy in practice. Another approach is to hire an agile coach, but sadly in practice the majority of coaches seem to be like professors who are only a chapter or two ahead of their students. Or we could take a more disciplined, streamlined approach and leverage the experiences of the thousands of teams who have already struggled through the very issues that our team currently faces. In this talk you’ll discover how to develop your WoW without starting from scratch and without having to rely on the limited experience and knowledge of “agile coaches.”

In this talk, Mark Lines, co-creator of Disciplined Agile, and co-author of four books on Disciplined Agile, shows how to reference the DAD “Toolkit” to help you make better decisions that make sense for your organization, for your teams, for their unique contexts. Better decisions lead to better outcomes!

09:55 – Questions & discussions

10:45 – Introduction to sponsoring bodies and coffee break

11:15 – Panel: The Future of Testing within Agile and CDRead More
Moderator: Chris Thacker, Test Manager, MoneySuperMarket.com

Position statement:

Agile Development, Continuous Delivery, and Continuous Deployment changed in fundamental ways how software intensive systems are designed and tested.
Giovanni Asproni, Principal Consultant, Zuhlke Engineering Ltd

DevOps at Scale
Ahmed Singer, Senior Solutions Architect, MicroFocus

Modern Software Testing
Ian Bissett, Technical Director, Infuse

11:45 – Round Table Session

Table 1 – Increasing software reliability: traditional vs. new methodologies and technologies
Dr Greg Law, CTO, Undo

Table 2 – Operability
Matthew Skelton, Head of Consulting & Training, Conflux

Table 3 – Scaling Agile but really retaining autonomy
Shabbir Naqvi, Programme Delivery Lead, YOOX NET-A-PORTER GROUP

Table 4 – Creating teams based on shared rules, values and purpose – an interactive roundtable
Tom Hoyland, Agile Delivery Lead, Sky Betting and Gaming

Table 5 – What can we do to bring agility (proactively responding to change) back to Agile?
Colin Deady, Head of Product and Innovation, Capita Application Services

Table 6 – Artificial Intelligence in Operations (AIOps)
Jonathon Wright, Chief Technology Officer, Digital Assured

Table 7 – Critical Skills for software testers
Paul Gerrard, Principal, Gerrard Consulting

Table 8 – The Importance of test automation
Ian Bissett, Technical Director, Infuse

12:15 – LUNCH

Testing Showcase
Agile & DevOps Showcase

TESTING TRACK – Chairman: Paul Gerrard, Principal, Gerrard Consulting –

13:15 – Chair’s scene setting.

13:20 – CASE STUDY: How SAP HANA engineers resolved 7 intractable bugs in their database applicationRead More
Dr Greg Law, Co-founder & CTO, Undo

How do you go about testing a complex feature-rich multi-threaded application of highly optimised C/C++ code that is SAP HANA? A huge code base, non-deterministic factors, continuous integration and more advanced testing methodologies lead to a growing number of intermittent test failures which are often difficult to reproduce and investigate. Worryingly, these sporadic failures are building up over time, like a pile of dirty laundry nobody wants to talk about…

The SAP HANA engineering team spent months analysing logs from failed tests – often with no success. Eventually, they tried a new method: recording test failures and replaying the recording files in a reversible debugger in order to see exactly what the HANA software did.

This short talk will explore how the SAP HANA engineering team managed to catch and fix sporadic memory leaks and race conditions … before they reached customers. Their true commitment to software quality is a big part of why they are leading the field in the in-memory revolution.

13:40 – Questions & discussions

13:45 – Continuous Testing – Increasing delivery speed and quality for Agile and DevOps teamsRead More
Ahmed Singer, Lead Solution Architect in Application Delivery Management, MicroFocus

The Demand for innovation from the Business brings many challenges for software Development teams, these include the proliferation of devices, adoption of Cloud, user Experience, Security, time to market and modern delivery practices such as Agile and DevOps.

Organizations are being asked to release new application and features to the market quickly, without sacrificing quality. This can only be achieved by keeping the source code free of defects by detecting problems as soon as they are introduced so that they can be weeded out before they get released to Production.

Whether you’re using waterfall, Agile, or DevOps methodologies, continuous testing helps you deliver better software.

Key learnings:

  • To understand the concept of continuous testing and the benefits it can bring to your organization
  • To learn how to implement continuous testing throughout the development process to achieve faster delivery and higher levels of quality

14:10 – Questions & discussions

14:15 – The importance of Test Automation and Continuous DeliveryRead More
Ian Bissett, Technical Director, Infuse

While automation is not new in the testing community, a large majority of software companies are still yet to fully understand and embrace test automation into their release process, relying solely on traditional manual testing methods instead. Using experience gained over the last 20 years, Infuse’s Technical Director Ian Bisset will be explaining why automation has become an essential part of modern software delivery and how tools such as Jenkins, Selenium and Infuse’s useMango product can be utilized to create a Continuous Delivery pipeline to help speed releases and reduce Production defects.

14:40 – Questions & discussions

14:45 – Coffee & Tea Break

15:05 – Testing your Prototypes: What, Why, HowRead More
Giovanni Asproni, Principal Consultant, Zuhlke Engineering Ltd and Robert Moore, Zuhlke Engineering Ltd

A common phrase associated with software prototypes is “quick and dirty”—meaning that not much thought is given to good design or, God forbid, testing.

In this talk we’ll present a different approach: the story of how we created a prototype for a moderately complex Amazon Alexa skill to manage bank accounts. We’ll describe how various levels of automated testing, and an attention to clean code allowed us to create a prototype, to be demoed to prospect customers, much more quickly that also works in a very reliable manner greatly reducing the chances of the “demo effect”—when the system works perfectly always except when demonstrated for an audience.

15:30 – Questions & discussions

15:35 – Continuous TestingRead More
Paul Gerrard, Principal, Gerrard Consulting

16:00 – Questions & discussions

16:05 – Continuous Testing with Models: Eradicating perennial barriers to rigorous testingRead More
James Walker, Director, Curiosity Software Ireland

This session presents an example iteration to demonstrate how Model-Based approaches can test complex systems within short iterations. The requirements-driven method identifies defects at source, while maximising feedback and eliminating testing bottlenecks. Parallelism and re-usability are built in, with QA and business teams working from the same models to deliver better systems faster.

16:30 – Questions & discussions

16:35 – Leading Quality: Lessons learnt about delivering great software from the fastest growing tech companies in the worldRead More
Ronald Cummings-John, Co-author, Global App Testing

Companies can no longer think about quality in the traditional sense – the days of relying on testers to be the gatekeepers of a release and own “quality” are over. Adopting a culture that embraces quality is what allows organisations to develop better quality products, achieve alignment between teams and deliver world-class customer experiences. In this talk, we share the traits of high-performing teams and insights from working with and interviewing the fastest growing app companies in the world like Facebook, Snapchat, Google, Spotify and more.

This talk will cover three key themes:

  • How internalising quality led to these companies building better products
  • What modern testing strategies they adopted and the decisions they made across their infrastructure to accelerate their development speed
  • How they connected testing activities to the metrics that matter and drove business growth

16:55 – Questions & discussions

17:00 – Chair’s summing up

17:05 – Close of conference & drinks reception.

Agile & DevOps Track – Chairman: Steve Freeman, Zuhlke Engineering Limited –

13:15 – Chair’s scene setting.

13:20 – DevOps ICU: Improving DevOps Results by (Correctly) Integrating UXRead More
Debbie Levitt, CEO, Ptype UX & Product Design Agency

UX is driving you crazy, a black throwing off timelines and killing ideas. UX doesn’t seem Lean or Agile. Can’t anybody make wireframes? Can’t we circumvent or exclude these people?

DevOps is about so much more than how developers connect with IT, how infrastructure is managed, and how frameworks can be improved. It’s about recognizing how many teams are truly involved in the software development process and finding better ways to make sure everybody is at the table.

This session will explain how the UX process fits into Agile; saves companies money; augments DevOps goals; and increases customer satisfaction.

13:40 – Questions & discussions

13:45 – Make your Developer your CustomerRead More
Colin Deady, Head of Product and Innovation, Capita Application Services

In high-agility teams “shift left” is but a starter for ten. While the goal is clearly stated, for example: deliver maximum benefit for the client for minimum engineering effort, compromise occurs when “client benefit over engineering creativity” is unwittingly added as a Manifesto item. Minimum effort often translates to short-term “do it now” attitudes and siloisation, the exact opposite of agility. Let us discover who the customers of the team really are and step away from the binary end points of “client” or “end user”. Sometimes, we will discover that the Customer is the Developer and not the Client at all.

14:05 – Questions & discussions

14:10 – Agents of ChangeRead More
Jon Fulton, Equal Experts

Agile practitioners everywhere work hard to build successful delivery capabilities and achieve great outcomes. More often than not, that means helping change the way things get done.

Jon will explore behaviours that can be both helpful and unhelpful when trying to influence organisations and be an Agent of Change.

14:30 – Questions & discussions

14:35 – Continuous Intelligence (AIOps) delivering Enterprise AI platformsRead More
Jonathon Wright, Chief Technology Officer, Digital Assured

Artificial intelligence is rapidly becoming part of every organisations 2020 business strategy. How do you bridge the Cognitive knowledge GAP? How can you apply bespoke domain knowledge to deliver Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) platforms?

14:55 – Questions & discussions

15:00 – Coffee and tea break

15:20 – Five Practical Operability Techniques for TeamsRead More
Matthew Skelton, Head of Consulting & Training, Conflux

In this talk, we explore five practical, tried-and-tested, real world techniques for improving operability with many kinds of software systems, including cloud, Serverless, on-premise, and IoT.

  • Logging as a live diagnostics vector with sparse Event IDs
  • Operational checklists and ‘Run Book dialogue sheets’ as a discovery mechanism for teams
  • Deployment Verification Tests as a way to assess runtime dependencies and readiness for service
  • Correlation IDs beyond simple HTTP calls
  • Lightweight ‘User Personas’ as drivers for operational dashboards

Based on work in many industry sectors, we will learn how to improve the operability of software systems using these team-friendly techniques.

15:40 – Questions & discussions

15:45 – Growing Pains: Attempting to Scale Teams, Maintain Culture & Deliver in an Agile MannerRead More   Shabbir Naqvi, Programme Delivery Lead, YOOX NET-A-PORTER GROUP

We will be looking at a case study of a company that has experienced exponential growth. The tech teams have grown from 500 strong to 1,000+ and the complexity of work has increased tenfold as the company navigates through the merger as well as natural growth.

16:05 – Questions & discussions

16:10 – How to Make Agile Delivery More EffectiveRead More
Iwona Winiarska, Agile Delivery Manager, Automation Logic

In a world of complexity, uncertainty and shifting priorities, it’s important to be nimble and adapt to the rapidly changing environment. This means organisations need to change the ways of working and how they deliver digital services and products.

This talk delves into agile delivery, principles of agile governance and ways of working as key elements for successful delivery.

16:30 – Questions & discussions

16:35 – DevOps and the Database – how to INSERT value into your pipelinesRead More
Chris Unwin, Compliant DevOps Specialist, RedGate Software

Traditionally a blocker in DevOps processes, in this session we will discuss Database change management and how it can be better leveraged to provide value faster in both directions by 1) integrating it with existing CI/CD activities and 2) provisioning sanitised copies for development.

16:55 – Questions & discussions

17:00 – Chair’s summing up.

17:05 – Close of conference & drinks reception.

2019 Speakers

Jonathon Wright

Chief Technology Officer, Digital Assured

Iwona Winiarska

Agile Delivery Manager, Automation Logic

Chris Unwin

Compliant DevOps Specialist, RedGate Software

Matthew Skelton

Head of Consulting & Training, Conflux

Ahmed Singer

Lead Solution Architect in Application Delivery Management, MicroFocus

Shabbir Naqvi

Programme Delivery Lead, YOOX NET-A-PORTER GROUP

Mark Lines

Managing Partner / DA Fellow, Disciplined Agile

Debbie Levitt

CEO,Ptype UX & Product Design Agency

Tom Hoyland

Sky Betting and Gaming, Agile Delivery Lead

Jon Fulton

Equal Experts

Steve Freeman

Zuhlke Engineering Limited

Colin Deady

Head of Product and Innovation, Capita Application Services

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Venue

Radisson Blu Edwardian Manchester
Free Trade Hall
Peter Street
Manchester
M2 5GP