Why I Lost My Job As a Test Manager and What I Learnt As a Result

Why I Lost My Job As a Test Manager and What I Learnt As a Result


with Stephen Janaway

My career followed the typical path of someone in technology. Tester, Test Lead, Test Manager, Senior Test Manager. It started in 1999, back when we lived in a world of scripted tests and large, separate, test teams who designed and ran the tests. A world of silo’s and walls, a world where communication-by-bug-report was common.

Agile came and fortunately disrupted things. Teams became cross-functional, and yet management did not change. Management became harder; there were more stakeholders to manage, and more areas to cover. Task switching came as standard. Eventually, the penny dropped with senior management and the management team was re-organised. A change had to come and that meant no more Test Managers….

This presentation aims to present a view of test management that I think fits with the software development methodologies and team structures that we typically see in IT today. It will use my personal experiences to explain why I think discipline based management is no longer relevant or required, and how Test Managers need to adapt to the new world of cross-functional, agile teams and continuous delivery. Change is coming, how will we all adapt?