8.6. Extending Your Talent: Using Temporary Experts and Implementers

Sometimes the list of tasks that simply must be done by a given date exceeds the capability of the test team. Sometimes you need to ramp up the test team for some peaks in workload. You might need additional expertise or just help in implementing some test development or execution effort. These situations are usually transitory and you can phase out the extra help after a period of days, weeks, or months. (For circumstances where long-term outsourcing is appropriate, see Chapter 10.) The remainder of this chapter discusses such temporary help and its use and misuse.

8.6.1. The Roles Temporary Workers Play

Let me start by defining the type of extra help I'm talking about. During the era of the organization man, this would be an easy exercise. Temporary agencies supplied clerical workers and other low-level interim staff to meet rush-period needs, while academia, industry alumni, and consulting companies supplied consultants to transfer expertise into the organization.

These days, though, especially in high technology, applying simplistic models such as this no longer works. Temporary agencies still exist, but they don't just supply data entry clerks, they also place six-figure-a-year programmers, test engineers, and business analysis. Some of the people who bring expertise to a company are these same test engineers, while others are the more traditional experts.

Not only is the model no longer applicable, the ...

Get Managing the Testing Process: Practical Tools and Techniques for Managing Hardware and Software Testing now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.