Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Testing at Progressive Insurance

This is not an opinion article nor is it explaining how Progressive does testing in general. It is just to give you more insight into some of the work I have done there.

I realized partway through that I can't create a readable story about every project in a meaningful way. How boring would that be? And by writing this, I think this post gives the impression that what is listed below encompasses everything I have done. There is so much more that I can't include in a single post.

I began as an intern in their Claims organization. Many of the people I worked with were new to the world of the Agile development lifecycle. My manager had me begin as a manual tester writing and executing test scripts before I joined the automation team and converted manual tests to automated scripts in QTP. My first projects were on client-server applications.

At one point I got approval to do both the manual and automated testing on a story card. This allowed me to perform better testing all around. I got to do manual testing where it made sense and automate where it would offer better advantages.

Before I left to finish my last year in college, I began work on a very large scale payment project on a thick client application that was going to replace the manual method of issuing paper check payments to electronic payments. After I graduated, I returned to finish working on this project. Batch jobs were a big part of this project and I helped to implement automation methods for generating data and testing these batch jobs.

Since then, I have done testing in in many project contexts such as converting DTS (data transformation services) to SSIS (SQL server integration services), implementing a Microsoft based Rules Engine, java based applications, several client server applications, thick client applications, migrating to newer technologies (e.g. SQL Server and Visual Studios upgrades), and heavy back end web service and data applications.

My favorite project was working on Progressive's Snapshot or UBI (usage based insurance) technologies. It was my first experience with dynamic design for web pages and social networking, and my first work with creating FitNesse solutions for testing. I got to work alongside a developer to help design, build, and test a batch service that was problematic. That was my first experience with bridging the tester/developer boundary for a project.

I have taken on the role of Test Lead and Automation Lead on several projects. I have acted as a Test Consultant on a few projects as well.

In a couple organizations within Progressive, I have worked to introduce, train, and lead others in Exploratory Testing practices. I relied heavily on James Bach's teachings on Session Based Test Management and Rapid Software Testing with excellent results.

I have acted as developer on a few "Code Jams" at Progressive  - where teams compete to build prototype technologies to help prove and experiment with business ideas. These were always a ton of fun. They are usually 1 or 2 days of straight coding and development marathons.

I have implemented, influenced, and created testing processes in many areas.

I have trained and mentored a lot of testers over the years. I really enjoy testing education.

I have been apart of recruitment and the hiring process.

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