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Branko Milikić, Managing Director, Sixsentix Serbia

Unique Testing Approach

Since its foundation, the vision of Sixsentix has been to grow as a specialised software testing company. Thanks to good work, the company today has offices in Vienna, Frankfurt, Abu Dhabi, Wroclaw and Krakow, Belgrade and Novi Sad

“If you don’t invest in the constant improvement of employees and their knowledge, the continual development of the services you offer and your approach, and if you are not dedicated to clients’ satisfaction and becoming recognisable on the market, you shouldn’t expect big things,” says Sixsentix Serbia MD Branko Milikić

Your company is headquartered in Zurich, but Sixsentix has offices in several European cities, and in the UAE.

The company headquarters are in Zurich, but we also have offices in Vienna, Frankfurt, Abu Dhabi, Wroclaw and Krakow. In Serbia we have offices in two locations, in Belgrade and Novi Sad, and here we have the highest number of employees. Considering that our clients are major corporations, we keep pace with the world market and expand our business in countries that recognise the necessity of high-level software quality and understand the need and importance of investing in this type of service.

The company in Switzerland is specialised in software testing, whereas the subsidiary company in Serbia is specialised in both software testing and development. What types of services are more in demand on our market?

There are two companies in our group. Sixsentix is specialised in software testing (quality assurance) and QACube is specialised in software development and it has its own product for visual analytics and reporting for DevOps. Developers are currently in demand worldwide, including in Serbia. So, the companies are literally competing to win over employees in this field. When it comes to testing, it can be said that the situation is slightly better. However, as time passes, many companies are becoming aware of the importance of quality assurance, so I expect the situation to be the same with testers very soon.

The SWAT approach defines our methodology and testing life cycle and has predefined team roles, with a specific skill set and responsibilities

Your clients are the biggest global banks and enterprises in the fields of finance, insurance and telecommunications. Do they rely on your Managed Testing Service?

We have implemented our Managed Testing Service for several clients, and it yielded impressive results. This type of testing service saves both time and money, as well as resources. The output is of high quality and there is no need for in-house test consultants. In this way, the clients have more time to focus on their core business. We also work with clients who have their own in-house testers, and even entire testing departments. In some cases we coordinate the projects, while in others the clients do the coordination. Both options bring great results, provided you work with people who are experts at what they do.

Your core business is software testing. What makes your testing approach different and unique? What results does it achieve – flawless, high-quality software that fully satisfies the needs of customers?

Since the foundation of the company, our vision has been to grow as a specialised software testing company. We didn’t want to test everything in any way, but we aimed at developing our own unique testing approach – Software Agile Testing (SWAT). The SWAT approach defines our methodology and testing life cycle, and has predefined team roles with specific skill sets and responsibilities.

It is distinguishable due to our testing methodology, which includes risk-based testing of the system components according to priorities, thus enabling the highest risk coverage of the system under testing with a relatively small number of automated test cases. As a result, the client gets a fast report about their readiness for product launch.

We all know that ‘time is money’, and, in a very competitive landscape, everyone working on a new product wants the fastest time-to-market, with software that has no errors or shortcomings that could result in dissatisfied users or in putting the product owner’s reputation at risk. We’ve already heard about large companies losing millions of dollars, even billions, due to the defects of their products already placed on the market. The worst-case scenario is to lose clients who will quickly direct their business towards the competition. In this scenario, a lot more is lost than just money.

With our expert knowledge and professional staff, we help clients avoid the potential problems of placing a low-quality product on the market. It is for all these reasons that we are constantly improving our business model and way of work.

Our approach becomes more recognisable to clients year-on-year, and we gradually expand our market share

How do you choose the right technology and approach to software testing? How much does it depend on the specific needs of each client and their industry?

It depends on the client’s needs and system architecture, but also on the client’s business policies. In some cases customers have signed license agreements and only use the tools of those vendors, so we have to adjust to that. In cases with no such restrictions, we decide for ourselves which tool and technique we will use, and which method of working we will implement. This brings the best results, because we determine the most adequate approach to the given requirements at that specific moment, based on our extensive experience.

Thanks to your testing services, the companies that hire you reduce their costs and shorten their products’ time-to-market. As time is becoming ever more expensive, will the need for your services grow? Are you prepared for that?

Our approach becomes more recognisable to clients year-on-year, and we gradually expand our market share and increase the number of clients. As I mentioned, software quality assurance is a relatively young field and the demand for this type of service will continue to grow, especially for the specific way of testing such as ours. We already have in place developed systems and processes for onboarding, education and staff training. With the help of experienced colleagues, we can easily adapt them and prepare for any new challenge in our field.

Is that one of the reasons, among others, why you invest a lot in the training and development of your staff? Are there experts that fit your needs available?

There are not enough qualified experts in this field on the market. On the other hand, the constant advancement of technologies and systems requires the continuous improvement of knowledge and skills. It is also very important to have the right people in the right roles, and to nurture the company’s values and culture. That’s why we invest in all of it, starting from the hiring process itself, through the onboarding of new employees, to the education and training of everyone in the company on a regular basis.

I would like to conclude this interview with the following message: if you do not invest in the constant improvement of your employees and their knowledge, continuous development of the services you offer and your approach, and if you are not dedicated to client satisfaction and becoming recognisable on the market, you should not expect big things.

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