Scaling up QA in an Organisation

I am currently the QA Manager for an organisation that is scaling up its QA across the organisation. Sounds great!! Often I have been in a position fighting for QA resource now it looks like things are going to explode. We are planning on going from roughly 10 testers to triple that which makes it fairly sized QA operation.
The plan at the moment is to set up hierarchical structure with test leads, so I only have a few direct reports to myself. All testers will be integrated into their respective engineering teams and the test leads would be responsible for the testing in the tribes(each tribe has roughly 3/4 teams). Each tribe has a mixture of manual, automation and testers who do both. I would also expect some of the test leads to do some testing on one of the smaller teams in the tribe.
I am also hoping to bring in a Test Architect to help out with things like tools and automation architecture which I am finding I am having less and less time to dive into.

Is there any other key personnel people would advise on having, is there any other tips for up scaling QA in an organisation?

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Congratulations and all the best.
With the size growing, there are usually high chances of disconnect within the teams and lots of rework happening.

So, ensure that people get to interact and exchange ideas more often.

  • Debug Day
  • Release Overview
  • Coffee (or Beer) & Ideas
  • Innovation / Hackathons

Also, see if you can meet the test leads together at least twice a month.
This would ensure that everyone is aligned to one common organization/departmental goal and also notes are exchanged effectively.

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Sounds like a great plan! I am lead of a team of 4 QA (split over 2 teams) and 3 Devs and literally have no time!

Cohesion might be an issue, you do not want to end up with Teams in teams - so architect idea is a great one for defining the way forward (if you want to take that from your leads or yourself)

Big expansion - training should be interesting, unless you are phasing the recruitment.

One thing we have is keeping our QA’s busy at the minute, we have a lot of ‘improvement’ that we are doing at the moment due to lack of developers, so keep up with a progression plan - and not just training.

All the best.

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@samwebb Congratulations !!!
I can share my experience, with bringing more minds more ways are created and which is good.
Have common process, guidelines etc so that everyone tied up and contribute towards the goal else everyone will go in different directions and this will only be observe post 6 months that you have multiple tets plans, test strategies, different automation framework etc
Other suggestion is that document/record everything as when we are growing team we are expecting teammates and everyone require same KT session which is consuming teams time as well and also there will be attrition which again bring new team-members

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Why do you want to scale? Are there new features or products coming up?

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Hey Samuel,

First of all, I would like to congratulate you on expanding the team and operations. As far as your plan is concerned, it seems very appropriate to handle a team of thirty people.

The only advice that I would give you to maintain consistency with the implementation is to have a proper reporting process. You have to ensure that the team leaders keep a check on all the activities of their respective team members while you keep a thorough check on all the reports shared by team leaders.

After all, scaling a process needs you to understand all the factors that are working in favor or against to ensure a proper operational strategy can be established. Based on all the reports, you can actively work with your teams to have insights and suggestions that can help improve the deliveries.

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