Neven Matas

QA Team Lead, Infinum - Zagreb, Croatia

    Originally a computer science and English language professor, he started his career in IT as a software tester in one of Zagreb’s most prominent digital agencies. Since then, he has tried to advocate and push for QA as a driving force instead of QA as a side attraction. His primary skills include manual and automated testing of mobile and web applications, but he strongly believes in a mind-set that allows QA engineers to segue into other software development processes as well. He also believes QA teams should play a vital role in software development companies as mechanisms of both control and change.

    About his talk

    You thought digital agencies don’t need QA? Think again!

    In the world of digital agencies, quality is all about building digital experiences. While traditional projects and companies require software testers that are primarily able to create, manage, and execute test suites; digital agencies profit more from QA engineers versed in disciplines that sometimes fall outside of that traditional document – test – report QA lifecycle. While all team members on software projects have certain incentives, no role is exclusively dedicated to all-round quality as an end-goal in itself. We have learned that superior digital experiences are hard to come by without unbiased dedication from a team focused exactly on that. Some believe that QA should start with the first alpha version delivered for testing. We believe that QA begins at day 0. All of the processes, micro-decisions, creative and technical directions can often be advised by QA. Why? Because quality assurance engineers are usually those people who know their projects inside and out. They carry a lot of information, but are often underused as assets and left with the sole purpose of verifying what’s been implemented. This might have been a good idea in the days before agile development, but falls wide off the mark on projects with ever-changing requirements. Developing a successful MVP today requires more than digital entomology and separation of responsibilities.

    It requires a QA team that:

    • Is there from the get-go

    • Serves as the connecting tissue between team members and channels information

    • Instils a drive towards quality, which is not always a natural phenomenon

    • Does whatever is needed to get things done well

    While software testing and its many challenges remain a core part of the job, I believe the true value of QA really starts shining through once the people doing it get their hands dirty with trying to really understand the product they will deliver and influence all the facets needed to develop it. My talk will go in depth to clarify how QA teams can be transformed to work best in such a fast-paced, product-oriented digital agency environment.