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3 reasons to consider testing as a service, or TaaS


20091030_jbl_SusanOConnor_031.jpgBy Susan O’Connor


Susan O’Connor has more than 15 years experience in enterprise software and services .


In the quest to maximize the business value of their applications, many enterprises have turned to ALM – an end-to-end centralized application management platform that sees an application through all stages of its lifecycle. Unsurprisingly, testing is a major component of ALM solutions, since apps need recurrent testing throughout their lifecycles. And with application performance responsible in many cases for business growth, testing assumes greater importance in IT strategy overall.


As the number and complexity of applications grows, however, enterprises can find testing becomes an expensive bottleneck. Outsourcing and managed services have sprung up in response, but as enterprises make the move to cloud even these measures fall short of delivering agility while lowering the total cost of innovation.


Enter testing as a service (TaaS), which enables enterprises to order testing on demand and pay only for what they use. As IT staffing constraints along with competitive pressures are increasing enterprise comfort with SaaS (software as a service), TaaS adoption rates are growing. One research firm expects the market for TaaS and automated software quality delivered as a service to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 35.9% through 2014.


Three benefits of TaaS

With TaaS, organizations can accelerate and scale testing to keep pace with application development. In particular, TaaS brings these three benefits:


  • Higher quality: TaaS can let you run more tests in a shorter amount of time, so you catch more defects while accelerating time to market. One of HP’s TaaS customers was able to reduce the severity level 1 and level 2 defects across 98% of projects to zero.
  • Increased agility: With a pay-as-you-go model, TaaS eliminates the need for long-term contracts or for in-house CAPEX.
  • Lower costs: HP customers have found cost savings of up to 40% as compared to the managed testing approach.


Five things to look for in a TaaS provider

Because a TaaS provider takes over your testing for you, it’s important to do your due diligence upfront. Here are five considerations to keep in mind when looking at vendors:


  • Expertise: Does your vendor have significant experience and IP in testing, including testing cloud and mobile apps?
  • Integration with ALM: A key point of any tool is visibility. With ALM, you’re getting visibility into an app over its whole lifecycle. Testing needs to be included, so make sure that your TaaS will flow into the dashboard for whatever software you’re using for monitoring and managing your applications.
  • Outcome-based pricing: Look to go into detailed SLAs with your vendor, and expect communication about defects, deliverables and timelines. You want your application quality to be assured.
  • Ability to work with whatever software you have in place: A TaaS provider should integrate with your own testing center of excellence (CoE) if you have one, as well as with offshore or near shore teams.
  • Ability to help you evolve to a greater maturity model: If you don’t have a testing COE already, ask if your provider can help you establish one.


For more information about HP’s TaaS offering, see the white paper, Service Innovations for Application Lifecycle Management


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