Webinar Recap: A Successful Migration from Quality Center to qTest

In a QASymphony webinar last week, Brad Bellmore, QA team lead for ABC Supply, shared his tips for a successful migration from Micro Focus Quality Center to QASymphony’s qTest. ABC Supply is the largest distributor of building supplies in the U.S., with more than 700 branches nationwide. In a traditional industry like construction, adopting modern development and testing processes has proven to be a significant competitive advantage for ABC Supply.
“Our industry is slow on technology, so it’s easy for us to stay ahead,” Bellmore said. “Our leadership has decided technology is not a cost center. It is a competitive advantage, and they help us out with that.”
When ABC Supply acquired another construction materials distributor, the technology team was given one year to merge the IT architecture of both organizations behind a single firewall, including finance, data warehouse, ERP and other legacy systems. The team chose to create all new APIs and integrations, some of which connected to on-premises technology and some of which was housed in the cloud. “And all of this had to be tested,” Bellmore says. “This was our opportunity to make some changes.”
The decision to migrate arose out of a need to improve tester-developer collaboration and visibility. As part of the organization’s transformation, the development team selected Jira as its new enterprise agile planning tool. Bellmore and his team quickly realized they needed a testing solution that could better accommodate testing workflows, with a strong Jira integration and a large repository to house all of the organization’s test artifacts, something that proved to be more difficult to find than Bellmore anticipated. It was also important to find a tool that testers would want to use. Previously, testers were entering data in as many as four different systems for a single project, so it was critical to find a solution that would make it possible to centralize and organize testing efforts across projects and teams. After downloading a free trial of qTest, Bellmore realized the tool was intuitive enough that he’d be able to train his team on the tool himself.
After the team selected qTest, it was time to focus on the migration. Ensuring a smooth transition, not only of years’ worth of historical data, but also of projects in process, can be a daunting process. A live poll during the webinar revealed attendees’ greatest concerns:
  • Worry over keeping existing data and historical records (46.7%)
  • Concern over the level of training required (26.7%)
  • Downtime between migration process and new tool adoption (20%)
  • Existing system integrations (6.7%)
According to Bellmore, many of those concerns are valid. But based on his experience, they are not insurmountable.
The first roadblock Bellmore encountered was with the data transfer. ABC Supply’s firewall rules prevented him from transferring the data into qTest the way he wanted. The migration happened to be taking place during Quality Jam, QASymphony’s user conference, so he was able to resolve the issue in real time with migration experts at the event. Then, Bellmore realized that his security team would not allow a cloud instance of any software to write to an on-premises instance. Because the team had chosen an on-premises instance of Jira, he quickly switched to an on-premises instance of qTest to ensure a seamless integration that adhered to his organization’s security rules.
“At that point we were able to integrate quite easily and everything got much better. We were doing everything we wanted, with one place to enter information in qTest. It was updating Jira… and it got us to where we really needed to be,” Bellmore says. All in all, the team ended up migrating 15,000 test cases and 1,000 defects across four projects, with minimal downtime.
Now, anytime a story is created in Jira, it automatically becomes a requirement for the QA team in qTest. “We create our test cases and link them to that requirement, so that when we execute them, the result then displays in Jira, so they can see if the test has passed, failed or has not been run yet.”
In the future, Bellmore plans to adopt qTest Explorer for exploratory testing and leverage qTest Launch to increase levels of test automation and centrally kick off and report on automated tests.

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