We've written here and elsewhere about the failure of offshore performance testing and its root cause – namely that it is the nature of the tasks to be undertaken that makes them inherently unsuitable for performing offshore.
Once this central point has been accepted, then it becomes clear that incremental steps to address cultural differences, stakeholder management and communications breakdowns can never be enough to correct the failures of offshore performance testing. The best that the offshore testers can achieve with such steps is that they will perform “less-badly” test processes that they should not be performing in the first place.
Successful testing involves understanding business performance needs and being able to distil them into a set of prioritised testing requirements. In the case of performance testing – which simulates the rigours of post-launch operation and covers stress testing, volume testing and load testing – a consultative approach throughout is critical: deciding what to test involves questioning the IT and business stakeholders. The whole process is very interactive and needs decisions to be made in real time, yet the specialised skills and experience required to operate this way are precisely those that offshore vendors have found most difficult to recruit and retain.
The complex test programmes that have been offshored in the recent past are a world away from the areas of testing, such as manual functional testing, which some offshore companies can do well. Our experience in remediating failed offshore test programmes has led us to the inescapable conclusion that the offshoring of performance testing was never appropriate and offshoring decisions in this area should be reversed.
Our latest White Paper, “Better Onshore than Unsure” provides a detailed insight into what you should do about the failure of offshore testing and it is available for download <<here>>