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Why is Testing/QA another lane on your card wall?

A typical story card wall on most Agile projects would have the following lanes
  • Ready for Development
  • In Development
  • Ready for QA
  • In QA
  • Ready for Customer Sign-off
  • Done
Having this lane structure gives the impression of the team working in silos. It feels like the developers work on developing the story and hand over an artifact to the QAs to now go and test and then whatever happens after that is their (QAs) problem.

In my previous projects, we have tried to combine the In Development, Ready for QA and In QA lanes to one "In-Progress" lane.

The benefits of doing this were
  • The responsibility to move a story to done was now owned by the team and not a specific role.
  • Developers, Business Analysts would help with testing if testing was a bottleneck.
  • We could set Work in-progress limits, so as to implement a pull model, where only as much work is done as can be consumed.
This approach helped the team manage the flow of stories across to Done in a more sustainable way.

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