Reaping the benefits of performance testing in an Agile environment requires a rethinking of how we approach performance testing in general.
Software testing is paramount to the success of projects built using an Agile methodology. Good test suites allow teams to respond quickly to shifts in the marketplace by enabling a high level of confidence in their systems and providing a continuous view into the system’s health. Of the four Agile Testing Quadrants, performance testing falls under Q4, technology facing tests that critique the product. However, review of literature has revealed that several obstacles exist causing performance testing in Agile teams to be implemented lightly or summarily disregarded. These obstacles include the need for performance testing specialists, the challenges of testing incomplete systems, the time investment, and the low return on that investment. While these obstacles are not insignificant, the insights gained from performance testing are valuable. In order for teams to gain these insights while still adhering to Agile values as well as keeping their organization’s costs in mind, the philosophies and approaches around performance testing need to be rethought. This form of testing cannot be implemented like the others. If teams want to reap the benefits of performance testing, they must explore new models, practices, and mindsets related to the subject. This paper will propose such practices and mindsets, offering suggested implementations and road maps for making performance testing a regular part of software development.