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CQAA April 2018 Speaker Program: From Nuclear Submarines to Agile Widgets: What QA and Test Defect Rates Are Saying

  • 19 Apr 2018
  • 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
  • Hosted by Allstate 2775 Sanders Road Northbrook, IL 60062


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From Nuclear Submarines to Agile Widgets: What QA and Test Defect Rates Are Saying

Michael Mah, QSM Associates, Inc.

About the Topic

Whether your projects are waterfall or agile, this presentation will uncover 3 keys to accelerating projects’ schedules by managing defect prevention, detection, and remediation by software teams. Actual industry case studies will reveal how to implement an end-to-end defect strategy that maximizes the likelihood of a team's success. Topics covered will include waterfall, Agile, pair programming, test-driven development, and outsourced projects. We'll also look at techniques that use defect curves to "predict the trajectory" of a project and its development and QA activities. Join us for this exciting, interactive discussion, which will use real-world case studies to illustrate the ideas.

Key Learning Objectives

  • Are your defect rates above or below industry averages?
  • Given the shape of the defect discovery curve, what does it tell you about productivity?
  • Is there a connection to time pressure?
  • Can this trajectory help predict the remaining schedule and help optimize Dev and QA staffing?

About the Speaker

As managing partner at QSM Associates Inc., Michael Mah teaches, writes, and consults to technology companies on release planning, measuring, and managing software projects and QA testing. He is the director of the Benchmarking Practice at the Cutter Consortium, a Boston-based IT think-tank, and served as past editor of the IT Metrics Strategies publication. With over 25 years of experience, Michael and his partners at QSM have derived productivity, schedule, cost, and defect patterns for thousands of projects collected in its worldwide QSM SLIM® database across engineering and business applications. His work examines the time-pressure dynamics of teams, the impacts on schedules and defects, and their role in project success and failure. Michael’s background is in physics and software with a degree in electrical engineering from Tufts University. His graduate training was in the field of mediation, facilitation, and dispute resolution at the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.


Hosted by Allstate
2775 Sanders Road
Northbrook, IL 60062

Directions: Enter through F Building. Conference room is in C Building (nine story building) Use the main entrance off Sanders at Winkelman between the North and South Plazas. Check in at the F Building lobby. Visitor parking is in front of the F Building by the tollway. Bring your photo ID.


1:30-2:00 Sign-in & Networking
2:00-2:15 Announcements
2:15-4:00 Presentation (15 minute break at 2:45)


Please register by April 18, 2018, at If you have any questions, please contact CQAA Program Director at

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