On a frigid day not long ago, I met a bright SVP of Quality Assurance (QA) at a large financial institution in the US. The company employs more than 10,000 people in its IT department alone, and this gentleman managed a team of nearly 2,000 QA professionals.
I was there to discuss some recipes for success, as this organization (a new customer of CAST) was just beginning to use our software intelligence platform and integrate CAST as a structural quality gate, towards the end of the development cycle, just before software would be released into production.
“Sooner being better than later, why are you only planning to use CAST technology late in the SDLC? Why aren’t you also using it to catch structural defects in software?” I asked.
This SVP gave me an answer that hit home.
“Well, you know, when you try to socialize the idea that we’re bringing in an X-ray machine to analyze our software that looks at database structure, transaction flows, component connectivity, etc. you come up against some strong pushback from your dev team, and even architects,” he said. “That’s ‘their’ code. They want to be the only one to know. I don’t want to waste my time in a tough uphill battle to convince our folks. You know, as the old adage says, 'if it was hard to write, it should be hard to understand.' So my strategy here is to catch a few 'monsters' right before production, the kind of software defects that lead to data corruption, outages or security catastrophes, and send them back to my dev team to fix before going to production. I bet you they will be asking for CAST any time soon," he said with a grin.
With a skillful understanding of what motivates a developer’s psyche, he found a smart and smooth way to introduce our disruptive technology, aiming to make the invisible visible.