QA Revolution

Throw Away the Key and Lock Developers Out Of Test Environments

I am constantly asked by developers if the can have access to the test environments to correct a problem. My answer is consistent: No! Do not grant developers access to your test environments. It is an innocent question, and it would make things quicker for them if they did have access to the test environments because it would allow them to look at logs and make minor configuration and code tweaks. Let’s also face it, I have developers that are my friends. I trust them and what that do, but I have to separate that relationship from best practices processes. It is not personal. However, this has proven to be very costly when errors are made. We have a standard process where code is checked into our repositories and then the test environment team gets the request to upload that into our test environments so that testers can begin testing again. It really helps to do a few things:

1. Creates a standard practice.
2. Does not allow the test environment to be accessed by developers.
3. Ensures the same code and configuration that are in the test environment are also applied to production.
4. The model is successful.

As a Test Environment manager it is necessary to build sound processes in order to eliminate as many errors as possible. Sure, mistakes are still made by the test environment group, but we constantly make tweaks to make that better. Continuous Process Improvement. Even within the test environments, Quality is critical. If your teams can build standard, consistent processes, then you will be successful. If you do not, you will continue to struggle and will not move towards best practices. When you sit down with a developer, project manager, development manager, or your boss you will be amazed at their willingness to adopt this type of change in order to ensure a quality release is delivered into production. Everyone wants to be successful!

Ron Wilson