For automation to be truly successful and deliver sustainable results, it can’t be a one-off project. It has to be knitted into the very culture of the organisation and fully embraced across the entire company. But changing organisational culture is much easier said than done. How can you incorporate automation so that it becomes a fundamental part of the everyday work culture? Here’s how you can start.
If you would like to create a company culture that embraces automation, then you have to make every member of your organisation, working in every position aware of how they will be benefiting from it directly. Show them exactly what’s in it for them. Else, you will lack the support needed to make this significant shift. You must remember, automation isn’t just about those who are building and maintaining it; it also provides flexibility, empowerment, and autonomy to the end-user.
Having a good leader for automation is highly essential. While searching for the right leader you must consider if he/she has relevant experience in automation, understands not only automation tools but also recognizes its fitment in other technology stacks such as test management tools, CI/CD processes, and technologies or Cloud execution platform like SauceLabs, BrowserStack, Perfecto. It is also crucial for this leader to have learned from previous failures. Once you find the right match, your automation leader must invest time in understanding the application under test, software development methodologies, and come out with the right approach, strategy and scalable design of automation; which will deliver the desired business results before actual automation work starts.
Change always comes with its fair set of challenges, especially when it involves the evolution of organisational culture as a whole. Understanding what’s standing in the way helps you to overcome the obstacles faster. More often than ever, the barriers that prevent a successful automation roll-out include inadequate budget, unorganized- requirement management, continuously changing requirements, starting automation too late in the release cycle, right skill and budget allocation. To overcome these common challenges, you must streamline your processes and set quantifiable benefits for every milestone that automation should deliver. This is because, in the end, quantifiable benefits are the drivers for all stakeholders to collaborate continuously and resolve challenges.
Provide incentives and rewards to make the culture change as smooth as possible. However, remember that incentives are not to be paid for building automation, but for fulfilling the purpose for which the automation was built. Cultural change happens when higher business results are achieved through automation and not by creating teams, skills, and scripts. Therefore, you must reward everyone who is contributing to achieving the result of automation.
What makes automation truly successful is its readiness against continuously evolving applications. Therefore, even organisational culture should be molded in the same way. One should be able to enhance it whenever needed. Remember, that rigidity curbs growth. So, be open to making modifications whenever necessary. According to me, the secret sauce to success is- Fail fast, fix fast. Adopting this approach might take you time, but it is sure to guide you in the right direction.
This is it from me; I hope these simple guidelines help you in establishing a culture of automation. Aptly said by Charles Darwin, “It’s not the strongest of species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.”