After our previous meetup done few days before the start of confinement, I was thinking how can we continue our testing meetups? and is confinement a reason to stop the community events ? Indeed meetups are more than just an online webinars or something to do offline, it’s about connecting people, sharing and learning …
I decided to create a special virtual event that makes people feel like it was a real meetup !

The idea started with an instagram story

I asked a random question if you are IN for a remote event, it was a simple story on our Instagram @sfaxtesting!

I got a reaction from Ileana our awsome follower from Argentina!

She is the new organizer of the very first Ministry of Testing community in Argentina, I asked her if she is interested to organize a meetup together. She liked the idea but she was in a doubt because not everyone is able to speak English I told her that English is also our third language in Tunisia and not everyone speak it fluently. We agreed to make it happen even with small number !

Organizing this event with her was absoulutely amazing, although the time zone difference we enjoyed organizing the event together in less than 3 weeks and everything was perfectly ready!

Choice of Meetup Topics

The event idea was to make it in a less formal way while taking a coffee between testers and to discuss 2 testing topics that they want most (1hour per topic).

We decided to run a vote in our Slack community using Poll, where participants can vote to the existing topics or suggest another one.

We end up with this list and top voted topics are about “Test Automation Strategy” and “Quality Reports for Stackholders

  • Roles and responsibility of agile tester
  • How to define your Automation Strategy?
  • Continuous testing in DevOps
  • POM page object model architecture with BDD testing
  • Quality report for stakeholders. Best approach to deliver quality status
  • What are the changes in my role as tester when working remotely?  
  • Metrics in software testing  

About 90 Testers live …

We shared the event in our social media and we were expecting 40 attendees, what a surprise we got about 90 Testers online during the event, and they were from different time zones ! 15 countries were present, fortunately it was saturday, we choose a flexible time, it was so magic that it’s morning in some places afternoon or evening in other places which make it a very unique event…

It was such honor to have lots of amazing guests under the same “umbrella” drinking coffee together with us, thank you to all testers that could join us in this wonderful event!

We got some special guests during our meetup, that are leaders in the testing industry and speakers in conferences such as Ard Kramer, Lisa Crispin, Gwen diagram, Petros Plakogiannis, Jesper Ottosen, Oleksandr Romanov …

It was great hearing different opinions on the proposed subjects

Test automation strategy

  • Do not automate just because (define WHY ?) fact the end goal of automation is to increase team velocity and improve the stability of the system which can bring more value but defining an automation strategy isn’t standard and it should be specefic to the project, product and the team.
  • Check automation tweets by @michaelbolton
  • How the organization is defining the automation triangles?
  • Ask your higher, think of RISKS + TIME you need to prepare (study the case and maturity of the team on how to test)
  • ENGAGE the entire team and teach the how to automate
  • Do not rely on PASS/FAIL tests, Trust your 6th feeling
  • Using RPA tools for Test Automation
  •  @Maik Nogens suggested we should have a “test strategy”, that includes a strategy for automation

Ard agree, first look what you want to achieve!

Brad Arlt Hellah yes. Automation will just go faster. But you still need to know what it is you want to do.

Alexander Romanov We have a separate test automation strategy for each feature. It helps us to track what we need to automate and when.

  • We need to have manual testing experience for the application, make an opportunity of study to see which Test cases will be good to be automated, make a feasibility testing even economic and thecnical one to see if we will gain or not if we automate this test cases (ROI), AND TO see if the tool that we choose can identify the object effectively without any issues that need more technical uses, we need also to train the team about the tool choose.
  • We can’t replace a manual testing of course, but we can automate some of our manual testing, for example, regression testing is more better to automate theme then to execute them on manual

Quality reports to stackholders

  • What do I need to report ? ask stackholders or decision makers
  • Be clear and concise, provide the info
  • Tell a story (use a graph, drawing, video) ==> reference: Gerald Weinberg
  • Know your audience

Nithin: In Jira flow, now we have a filter for rca. And during retro we share that. Also, we map our unit tests and spec files to test cases derived and generate a report of testcases already covered under that criteria, which help us to reduce testing effort for any changes related to that

People are open to start conversations in chat, comments or live in crowdcast.

They were also active in our slack channel before or after the event and in social media.

About #testersvirtualcoffee meetup !

Takeaways and recommendations

Running a virtual coffee with such numbers and particpants from everywhere was a great experience, they could discuss together ideas to make their skills in software testing better and more valuable

  • Involve your community in the choice of topics (we used Pull integrated in Slack)
  • Choose the right tool for the meetup depending on the number of participants (Crowdcast was our choice)
  • Define a hashtag for your meetup on social media (our hashtag was #testersvirtualcoffee)
    I recommend using a new one if you didn’t find a standard hashtag so that you give the opportunity to members to connect to each other before and after the meetup and continue sharing their interests.
  • Try to add more fun to make participants feel connected to each other learning in a safe environment without being shy (we asked them to bring coffee)
  • In remote meetups, don’t limit your audience to the local community but try to share your thoughts and learn from the global community, you can spread the event on different social media (we shared the meetup in facebook, linkedin, twitter, and instagram to reach many testers)


In spite of the global pandemic, our Sfax Testing Community in collaboration with Salta Testing community have really united and put together this awsome event !

Independently from people location, position or background sharing is always important. It’s an opportunity to learn from each other, retrospect and improve by merging all discussions from all over the world in a single meetup !

Thanks to Ministry of Testing, Gwen Diagram for supporting and hosting the event with us !