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Selling (and Buying) “Live Site Quality” at eBay

In the February Fortune magazine, eBay made the cover with the title “eBay is Back!” The article cited improvements in the look and feel of the site, strategic investments in fulfillment, and technology partnerships with retailers to establish it as more than just an online auction service. Jon Bach joined just as eBay was making big bets to make notable and visible gains with this strategy. Jon recounts his two and a half years as a quality engineering director and introduces a concept he calls Live Site Quality. It means the value your customers get while experiencing different activity flows through your online product or service. It’s the impression they’re left with as they try to solve a problem or meet a need—whether it’s a simple task or a complex exploration of your site’s capabilities. Jon’s main idea is selling stakeholders on different Live Site Quality perspectives and getting eBay colleagues from different parts of the organization to buy into the idea that bugs that might most affect their Live Site Quality may lie between their team and another.

Jon Bach, eBay, Inc.

With more than eighteen years of experience in software testing, Jon Bach has held technical and managerial positions in companies including Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft. In his current role as director of Live Site Quality for eBay, Jon is dedicated to building “end-to-end” tests (activity flows) in eBay’s core sites to discover important bugs that threaten its core business. He is most notable for creating, with his brother James, Session-Based Test Management, a method to manage and report exploratory testing.

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