When considering the value or ROI that we reap from our efforts in implementing and using BDD it is realitively straight forward to measure your savings for the test automation element. You can compare the old manual test design and execution times against the new automated design and execution times over a time period.

What I am having difficulty in measuring is the savings we achieve from the closer team collaboration. With our old waterfall based SDLC we would have been able to measure it by filtering on defects that were caused by badly defined or inaccurate requirements. Also, we could have looked at the amount of change requests that came in. For BDD though the earlier collaboration means ambiguities are removed earlier in the development process during conversations. My challenge is How can I track and measure this?. What I would like to do is compare this measurement with a similar sized project that is being ran by another team that is still working with a waterfall approach. I can then show the value of earlier collaboration to the business.

Any thoughts or more discussion?


1 Answer 1


It is difficult to compare development methods this way. You can have two teams, each of which uses a different method, both of which are developing the same software, and measure the total amount of time (with comprable defects) from start to finish. Then you have to account for the fact that the larger amount of software produced is a worse result.

But you can never perform a test like this anyway. There are too many uncontrolled variables. You don't have the same team, you don't do it at the same time, perhaps not the same end users are present to discuss the design, etc.

  • Good answer for a hard question. I would add that the best way to actually compare them is over time, which team more consistently meets business requirements? After a few projects, you should start to see a clear leader if one philosophy is significantly superior to the other. May 10, 2017 at 1:41
  • @Maybe_Factor Unfortunately both teams would have to swap "philosophy" periodically to avoid the team member specific bias. May 10, 2017 at 16:41

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