As developers, you are not judged solely on your end product. Every step along the way to delivery is monitored and measured against software quality control standards. All your engineering processes, methods, activities and work items are subject to scrutiny. In today’s environment, you can get it wrong even though you, ultimately, got it right.
In the realm of quality assurance, the expectations are that we understand both the need for and the burden of meeting such high software quality control standards. We also know that the way you design your software quality control plan is critical to your professional success.
We can help you design that plan.
The tips below will help you create a software quality control plan that not only delivers on your current project, but also makes it easier to repeat success in the future.
Tips for Creating a Solid Software Quality Control Plan
Quality control is all about establishing your path ahead and setting standards for others to follow. It is a product-based approach that defines the activities and standards you follow to realize the business goals of your application. As QA experts, we follow the same core approach toward fulfilling our half of the Agile development methodology.
Our advice on building a software quality control plan is to focus on four key areas:
- Security and audit standards
- User requirement specifications
- Preparing for failure
The standards we use to provide our customers with peace of mind as well as a quality product can help you design a software quality control plan that preserves your knowledge and makes your enterprise more efficient.
As it is with development, so too it is with QA: documentation defines roles, preserves the audit trail and establishes repeatable protocols. Consistency is crucial. Establish standard templates that you and your team can use to document processes, prioritizing detailed, precise information. Whether it be effort estimates, requirement specifications or business case selection, there should be an easy way to track progress through the duration of a project.
Security and Audit Standards
From HIPAA compliance to audit standards of the financial and security industries, there are external requirements you must be aware of and accountable to in every project. Your quality control plan must confront these requirements and issues and establish processes to meet them. Use clear, plain language to convey rules and protocols around items such as data handling, access and modifications; encrypted data transfers; storage of paper and electronic records; as well as physical and logical protection standards.
An experienced QA partner with domain expertise can help you navigate these decisions and processes.
User Requirement Specifications
For each stakeholder, you must make clear the business and product requirements governing all actions within both the development and testing phases of the SDLC. All our decisions within the development process should be guided by an awareness of our end users and the market performance of our product. You need to develop a solid plan for communication and feedback across your development, IT, business and QA teams to ensure actions are reflective and motivated by the user requirements.
Preparing for Failure
The only guarantee within any SDLC is that there will be surprises along the way. How will you cope with the discovery of a serious bug or a significant delay in workflow? You need to build these variables into your software quality control plan to provide realistic and effective time and resource estimates. Everything is viewed through the prism of the production cycle, but we can tell you as QA professionals that unrealistic expectations are among the most common causes of product delay.
You need to plan so you can ramp up or scale down production as the environment around you evolves and changes—sometimes suddenly.
This is where it pays to have a QA partner onboard from the beginning of your project. Accounting for these kinds of unexpected challenges is part of our role as your product partner. We share the responsibility for the project and are passionate about delivering the best possible user experience.
Why QA Experts Are Key to Unlocking Ultimate Software Quality
You can consider your QA provider as a member of your team. They are there to help with fundamental decisions around the necessary framework, tools and types of testing requirements to meet your specific business goals. They can help you establish integral aspects of your development cycle, including:
- What can and cannot be tested with automation
- When to implement manual testing to maximize the user experience
- Tool selection for test efficiency and coverage
- How to develop effective reporting and communication channels
- Domain-specific considerations such as regulations and industry trends
Importantly, a QA partner is there when you need them. You can create greater ROI by engaging their services when required and returning to them in the future with minimal onboarding.
Developers and QA experts work within the same strict requirements of quality control and assurance. There is a mutual interest in establishing, following and recording best practice procedures that service both current and future products.
The right QA partner can help you stay in command of your software quality control through every repeatable process and protocol.
QASource engineers have partnered with some of the world’s leading brands to produce more than $11 billion in successful customer exits. Their domain expertise, extensive experience and commitment to continued research position them to guide you through every aspect of your product testing requirements. Contact us today for a free quote, or call +1.925.271.5555 to get started.