The financial services sector is constantly evolving. Increasing investor scrutiny, changing market trends and constant technological developments have made it imperative for financial institutions to harness the latest technology to provide quality customer service.
Financial services should be able to deliver safe and secure transactions, which is why they need to invest in running tests on their software applications. Here are some reasons why software testing is important for financial institutions:
- Stable Transactions With Payment Integrations: Stable payment gateway integrations are necessary to ensure secure transactions for customers. Hence, it's important to test the software and check its capabilities.
- Enhanced User Experience: Stable performance at peak loads, a great user interface and usability lie at the heart of a great customer experience. It is necessary to check that these intricate features work effectively by running end-to-end performance tests.
- Regulation and Compliance: Financial services need to comply with strict regulatory laws, and hence test their software to ensure that their banking APIs follow the industry terms and conditions.
- Security and Privacy: The security of customers’ sensitive data is of utmost importance for financial services. Hence, it’s imperative that they run security tests to protect data from cyber attacks.
- Digital Convergence: Since customers are making transactions from a variety of devices (that is, laptops, smartphones), it's important to run end-to-end tests and ensure a seamless user experience.
- New Technologies: New technological advancements like voice recognition and browser service applications have made inroads into the financial services industry. It's very important to test these applications before launching the product to ensure a seamless customer experience.
The QA process is more than assembling a team of testers. Your QA process must be ready to address these industry-related challenges by implementing the following steps:
- Data Segregation and Test Identification: The first step of running software tests for financial services is to gain domain knowledge and understand industry trends. Following this, you can implement tests based on functional and business goals.
- Creation of Test Cases: The next step involves creating a test suite based on the application’s functionality, user experience, performance and security aspects.
- Functional Testing Implementation: To ensure that the app/website is meeting all the functional requirements outlined in the document, it is necessary to prepare, execute and review test cases.
- Database Structure Validation: The data from running these tests should be stored in an easy format so that they can be retrieved at any point in time.
- Data Authentication and Encryption: Data encryption and user authentication measures need to be in place to ensure that there is no security breach. To achieve this, banks need to implement a multi-layer validation process, like the use of one-time passwords, or OTPs. Both manual and automation tests can be performed to ensure that these safety measures work well.
- Examination and Validation of App Performance: Tests are performed to check the page loading speed across various browsers.
- Confirmation of User Acceptance: By running constant tests, financial apps are monitored for errors. QA engineers also ensure that the app meets the user-acceptance guidelines. Moreover, the last stage of testing is performed by end-users in real world scenarios.
All these different aspects of testing require a highly skilled group of testers. Sometimes, it might be challenging to onboard and train such talent in-house, and hence many successful companies choose an offshore agile software development team to support their QA testing process.
But is an offshore QA services provider right for you? Before you weigh the pros and cons, here’s everything you need to know about agile testing.
What Is Agile Testing?
In QA, agile testing is a type of software testing that follows the principles and rules of agile software development. In agile testing, a QA software tester can start testing at the beginning of a project, defeating the speed vs quality dilemma with continuous integration. Agile testing can run continuously before the coding phase, making it great for testing teams to streamline the QA process with agile testing software.
The Pros and Cons of Offshore Software Agile Testing
Agile QA is about more than just testing. After all, what is agile testing without making sure everyone, whether onsite or offshore, is responsible for quality? Because Agile encourages collaboration and self-organization, charging all team members with the job of ensuring quality comes naturally.
When everyone keeps an eye on their work, they are more likely to spot errors, making it easier for your team to deliver a finished product that meets the high requirements of the financial industry. That is why Agile methodologies apply not only to QA testing but also to financial services software development. By engaging all stakeholders on a project, Agile methodologies easily include offshore testing services teams.
Offshore agile software development is a wonderful option for software testing for a financial services firm. By engaging all QA software tester parties, it helps teams surpass quality standards. A team can use Agile methodology within their offshore testing services from anywhere in the world because team members are encouraged to practice these key principles for software testing in financial services:
- Short iterations of set length
- Continual re-prioritization of product backlog “to-do” tasks
- Constant integration
- Open, inclusive communication
- Shared goals and expectations communicated with all stakeholders
Infographic | Defeat the "Speed vs Quality" Dilemma with Continuous Integration
Offshore Software Testing: The Pros
Now that you understand what agile testing is, it’s easy to see why so many companies turn to offshore agile software development. When following best practices for successful offshore agile QA, you can save money on training, infrastructure, and technology with an offshore testing services team. When it comes to software testing in financial services, you can expect to see these positive results when conducting Agile testing.
- Objective Testers: Every offshore QA software tester is completely unfamiliar with the code they are testing for you. By having fresh eyes on your software, your offshore QA team is more likely to spot bugs and errors better than your internal team members. Your outsourced team also has years of experience in software testing for financial services firms, so they understand the value of objectivity within the QA process.
- Greater Cost-Efficiency: An offshore agile software development partner pays and manages QA team members. This means your company can reallocate time spent hiring and onboarding these professionals on other essential projects and team goals.
- Quicker Turnaround Time: By choosing a partner specializing in Agile software testing in financial services, testing is completed sooner than when done solely in-house. Since outsourced QA services providers are well-versed in agile testing software, they are able to expedite the testing process even more while providing accurate and thorough testing results.
- 24-Hour Work Cycle: When your internal team clocks out for the day, your outsourced partner continues testing. When QA testing occurs during more hours of the day, your team is able to address code issues sooner and deploy to production on time.
- Freedom To Focus On Software Development: When you task your outsourced QA partner to run your testing process, you give your in-house developers and internal peers more time to dedicate to development. This means your development team can stay focused on delivering quality code and resolving issues for a successful market launch.
Offshore Software Testing: The Cons
While having a team offshore agile software development team that specializes only in QA is beneficial, it also has its downsides. Most of these problems are caused by distance or communication. If you are thinking of engaging an offshore testing partner for your financial services software, be ready to deal with any of these possible challenges.
- Communication: Offshore agile software development teams can have difficulty communicating when English is a second language, or when there are different cultural or social norms, such as differing holidays.
- Information Sharing: This becomes critical when working with geographically distributed teams. With an offshore agile software development team, you cannot simply hop on an elevator or visit another building to hand someone a document or have in-person meetings on the fly. Any information that would be passed around on sticky notes or written on whiteboards must be added to shared online repositories or wikis.
- Lack of Expertise: Not every offshore QA team is equal. Choosing the wrong testing partner without experience in software testing for a financial services firm won’t deliver the same quality testing results. If your testing partner does not select qualified, seasoned QA professionals for its QA team, you cannot expect to get the superior-quality software the financial industry demands.
- Differing Time Zones: The difference between time zones can be a problem, especially when scheduling meetings between in-house and offshore teams. The problem is more significant when coordinating teams that are on opposite sides of the planet, such as collaborations between North American and Asian teams.
Every one of these pitfalls can be avoided by choosing the right testing partner.
The Right Testing Partner Makes Offshore Software Testing Successful
If you are developing software for clients within the financial services industry, you need to create a tool that makes the lives of your clients easier. That means giving them software that helps them comply with a host of changing government regulations, like Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX), Basel II, Dodd-Frank, or FATCA.
If your team has talent and vision, you can build the game-changing software your client is looking for. But you’ll need to make sure your software is high-quality and bug-free before you deliver it. Only engage the best QA partner available to test your project. One that can integrate with your development team, uses Agile methodologies, and gives you the cost benefits and expertise of an outsourcer. You will see the difference when you deliver software that outperforms expectations and when new clients become repeat business.
Does an offshore agile software development team sound right for your QA testing needs? Choose to partner with a QA services company like QASource. Our team of testing experts specialize in a variety of testing services with years of experience performing banking and financial application testing. Get a free quote today.