Gwen Stewart


I have been working in IT for the last 19 years with 12 years as a test manager. In that time I’ve worked for a range of e-commerce and digital broadcasting organisations including L&G, Expedia, Microsoft, Amazon and the BBC. I’ve also transitioned from waterfall delivery methods to varieties of agile and in some cases a development methodology know as chaos.  I’ve been involved in a number of agile at scale projects in this time too ansd had fun with the transition from how these work in a V-model structure to fit to agile and CD practices. I’m passionate about IT and although 4-5 years ago I would have said that I was passionate about testing I’d now say, based on my agile experiences that I was passionate about software delivery. I’m currently working at the BBC as QAM for TV and Radio. I still manage to get hands on with testing though and that is the best part of the job.


Give me back my Quality! 

Over the last few (10, shhh) years there has been much conversation about quality and testing and what the responsibilities of a test team is.

We’ve heard about differences in testing and quality assurance (I think they are different but I’m not sure the difference helps us much in real life) and also  that testing as a discipline does not own quality. We hear that “It’s the responsibility of the whole team” or “Only devs can build in quality”. Apart from the issues of everyone owning something meaning that no-one really owns it then I think this does us a disservice.  It also makes test as a discipline less relevant in the software lifecycle. Obviously we can’t sprinkle on magic quality dust at the end of a reactive delivery process but we can take a proactive stance on getting quality built in and helping teams work better.

I think we can and should own quality and that by taking on that ownership we improve both our customer or audiences experience and can also much more effectively influence how our wider (all software) team works to make good software easy to ship.

We totally own quality – let’s be proud of that!