In order to build a new product or add a new feature, who would you need to give this task to? Surely a bunch of programmers would be enough, right? It’s their job to fix things like this.
Nevertheless, software development involves a lot more nuance than that. Something that appears like a result of just a bunch of code is only real if a variety of specialists work together. These specialists include not only programmers but also project managers, designers, business analysts, and quality assurance engineers. Together, they form a fully functional team that can deliver the results you are looking for. Today we will focus on the later specialist – QA – and why their expertise is essential to the success of your project.
Long story short: without QA practices your project is more likely to fail!
Why? Well, let’s find out!
QA and QC: What’s the Difference and Why Do You Need Both?
Quality Assurance (QA) and Quality Control (QC) are both processes that will ensure your product is functional, works according to initial requirements, and has no defects to dissatisfy the end-users. Although these activities are aimed at the same goal, they operate slightly differently.
Quality Assurance helps prevent errors and defects in software. The process entails creating test plans, incorporating security and quality standards into the project early on, monitoring the performance of the team in terms of quality, etc. QA is proactive in ensuring product development with minimal defects along the way.
The core QA processes include:
- Analyzing documentation and requirements
- Establishing quality standards and personnel training
- Performing regular audits
- Investigating procedures
Quality Control consists of a set of techniques meant to detect already existing problems in software. The process involves looking for bugs manually or automatically, reporting them to the team, and monitoring if they have been fixed. QC is reactive, responding to the available inconsistencies and defects but not preventing them whatsoever.
The core QC processes include:
- Manual or/and automated testing
- Product sampling
- Writing reports
Overall, quality control is a part of quality assurance, but not vice versa. Here is a picture that illustrates that:
From a first glance, dealing with defects reactively seems to be the most cost-effective and time-saving approach. However, it is proven to be wrong the further along the product development progresses. Although QA practices take more time initially, they will end up saving a lot of time and money later – when the product is being developed. The software will have fewer bugs, defects, and inconsistencies resulting in better quality.
Software Testing Life Cycle
Quality Assurance sets a solid foundation for software testing life cycle (STLC) to operate well and without glitches.
STLC describes the steps that QA specialists need to take in order to test your product for bugs and defects. It consists of the following stages:
- Requirements analysis: Studying the client’s requirements carefully is crucial to understanding how the app needs to look, behave, and perform. As a result, QA specialists will choose the proper preventive measures, and QC specialists will know which things are defects and which aren’t. Or else they might mistake bugs for a feature, as it goes in all those jokes.
- Test planning: As soon as QA knows what’s needed to develop a feature of good quality, they create a test plan. Test plans describe test strategies, objectives, schedules, estimation, deliverables, and resources required to perform testing.
- Test case development: A test case is like the algorithm of what the QA will do and how. It consists of a series of actions performed to determine a particular feature or functionality. For any particular test scenario, test cases contain test data, preconditions, and postconditions developed to validate specific requirements.
- Environment setup: The testing environment consists of software and hardware that must be set up so that the testing team can run tests.
- Test execution: Now it’s time to perform all the tasks mentioned in the test cases. Now it comes down to actually testing!
- Test cycle closure: The last step is to collect all the information about the problems and send it to the team to debug.
Passing all of these stages during each iteration will ensure that your app runs smoothly.
What is the Point of QA and QC, Anyway?
If you want the short answer: you need QA to prevent bugs and QC to detect them, and this will make your app better, more functional, and of a higher quality.
Following are the points that would be included in a longer answer:
- By reducing defects that are likely to dissatisfy your users, QA improves the user experience.
- The automated testing process eliminates human error that is inevitable in any production, including software development.
- Software development teams are more productive with fewer bugs to deal with. Defects tend to be demotivating if they are common.
- QA ensures that the vulnerable parts of your app are covered, which improves its security.
- QA saves you from spending money on reworks because untested apps are more likely to fail.
- Your app will end up on users’ phones, screens, web pages, and so on if it is tested well.
Top 5 Software Development Companies with Well-Established QA Practices
SapientPro is an IT company with web developers who have the ability to handle complex projects, meet the needs of clients within set deadlines, and ensure the high quality of the applications produced. The clientele spreads all around the world, including the Netherlands, USA, UK, Thailand, Norway, Israel, Brazil, and many others! Among the industries, we work with are Finance, Retail, Logistics, Education, Blockchain, and Custom Solution Development.
2. Innowise Group
With offices throughout the world and key delivery centers in Eastern Europe, it is an international software development company. Innowise Group offers full-cycle development performed by 700 IT professionals: backend, full-stack, frontend, mobile, DevOps developers, PMs, designers, BAs, and of course, quality assurance engineers!
10Pearls is a technology partner building cutting-edge mobile applications and custom software. As a part of their partnership, they provide Mobile & Web Development, User Experience (UX/UI), Quality Assurance, Security, DevOps & SecOps services.
13 years of experience Scalo has had in delivering software projects lead to extensive expertise in the following industries: manufacturing, telecom, e-commerce, banking, media, and others! And rather than just plan, design, and build your product, they will thoroughly test it, too!
5. Forte Group
With a presence in Argentina, Colombia, Belarus, and Ukraine and HQ in Chicago, Forte Group can really offer you flexible software development from all around the world! They mainly work with enterprise-sized companies and tech companies that need to accelerate and improve the way things work tech-wise!
Quality Assurance is one of the most important aspects of SDLC defining the success of your product. And if you happen to look for software dev companies with expertise in QA – we are here! Contact us!