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The essence of testing:
Navigating challenges in the public sector

jonnie russell

Jonnie Russell - Invdev CTO

In the heart of every successful digital transformation within the public sector lies a commitment not just to building new solutions, but ensuring they function reliably and securely. It’s akin to constructing a new building: beyond the bricks and mortar, its true strength is determined by the quality assurance tests it undergoes.

The challenge for public sector

Public sector organisations, however, face unique challenges. With limited budgets, many are caught in a quandary of prioritising development or investing in robust testing. Understandably, the spotlight often falls on creating new functionality. Yet, without rigorous testing, the edifice might look beautiful but remain vulnerable to unforeseen calamities.

Outsourcing becomes a viable solution for many, bridging the gap between limited internal expertise and the vast technical know-how needed to ensure solutions are watertight. 

But how does one strike the right balance between manual and automated testing?

Manual vs Automated Testing

Manual Testing: The Human Touch

  • Captures nuances and context often missed by automated scripts.
  • Adaptable in real-time, especially for new or frequently changing functionality.
  • Time-intensive.
  • Susceptible to human error.

Automated Testing: Efficiency at Scale

  • Speeds up the testing process, especially for repetitive and large-scale tasks.
  • Delivers consistent results, free from human fatigue or oversight.
  • Requires upfront time and investment to set up.
  • Can miss out on context or unexpected use cases.

How Invdev is testing code and products for UK Gov

Department for Work & Pensions (DWP)

Invdev led testing of published content and its correct viewership across hundreds of content managers and thousands of end users when DWP launched distributed publishing

Building & testing a new LocalGov Drupal (LGD) website

Elmbridge Borough Council (EBC) needed a modern, accessible and robust website, to accelerate their digital transformation, and provide easy access to information, optimising user experience. Partnering with Invuse, Invdev build and tested to GDS standards the EBC website on the LocalGov Drupal (LGD) website platform.

Department for Transport (DfT)

Invdev testing teams checked the veracity of user data when DfT’s Active Directory was integrated into the Invotra-powered People Directory, as part of their wider intranet launch

Bracknell Forest Council

Invdev led functional and feature testing with content editors prior to their intranet launch with Invotra.

Testing SSO authentication of 600,000 members

Sierra Club came to us wanting to simplify their log-in process for their 600,000 users onto their intranet platform. Our integrations teams created, tested and delivered an Single Sign On (SSO) authentication between the Sierra Club Salesforce account and Drupal Intranet to streamline the entire log-in experience.

Understand when to deploy for maximum effect

In the world of testing, neither approach is universally superior. For features in their infancy or those undergoing frequent changes, the adaptability of manual testing shines. Yet, as functionalities stabilise and scale, the efficiency of automated tests becomes indispensable.

For public sector organisations, understanding the strengths and limitations of both testing types can lead to smarter outsourcing decisions. It’s not about choosing between manual and automated; it’s about understanding when to deploy each for maximum effect.

At the end of the day, our shared goal is clear: delivering reliable, user-friendly solutions that truly benefit the public. As advocates of openness and honesty, we stand ready to guide and support this journey.

Good testers make great engineers

At Invdev, we believe in starting our apprentices and budding engineers in QA and testing. The reason behind this is straightforward: over the years, we’ve recognised that skilled testers often evolve into exceptional engineers. They also understand the importance of quality and learn not to “throw something over the wall” to a testing team or automated testing before checking their work first themselves, and this is why public sector organisations rely on Invdev for their testing and software development.

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