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Ultimate Guide to Quality Assurance in Software Testing

    Quality assurance in software testing is essential for any software development project. There are different forms, processes, and styles of quality assurance testing, such as:

    • Functional testing
    • Non-functional testing
    • Automation testing
    • Agile testing

    For each type, the goal is to ensure that the final product works as intended with as few bugs and errors as possible while providing end-users with a positive experience.

    The goal of quality assurance is to polish software. This includes catching and identifying errors and implementing processes to resolve or improve those issues.

    Find out more about software quality assurance testing, how it can be implemented, and the benefits of using it in your next software development project.

    What Is the Role of Quality Assurance in Software Development?

    Software quality assurance (SQA) is the process of making sure software meets expected standards and functionality. The SQA process helps catch, address, and resolve bugs or glitches within the software and improve the user experience.

    Some companies limit SQA to include only the final software iteration to catch major issues before release. While this can catch some glaring issues, implementing SQA so late in the development process limits its effectiveness and drastically increases the cost and time required to address those concerns.

    To get the most from SQA, testing should be done throughout the lifespan of a project.

    The Process of Software Quality Assurance

    Software quality assurance procedures can vary from company to company and from project to project. Because of the varying needs of each project, there are over a hundred different ways to do software quality assurance. Although the methodology varies, the core goal of SQA is the same.

    Rather than testing everything at once, SQA focuses on one specific goal at a time and addresses the needs and concerns around that single problem before moving on to the next test.

    Think of it as writing a research paper for school. The first time you edit the paper, you focus on the grammar, making sure each sentence is grammatically correct. The second time, you focus on punctuation, and the third time, you focus on sources. Each time, you choose a different problem to tackle.

    In the same way, SQA might start with something like configuration testing, then move on to user interface testing, structural testing, stress testing, and more.

    SQA takes one component or issue at a time, searches for any errors or ways to improve that one process, and then moves on to the next test.

    How to Ensure Quality Software with SQA

    The best way to ensure quality software is to involve SQA in the software development process early and often. By involving SQA early in the development process, key issues and optimizations can be addressed before they become large issues.

    Early implementation of SQA also ensures that product development is headed in the right direction. It is easier to identify if an idea is not working or redirect development early on in the development cycle than trying to correct it when the project is ready for distribution.

    The final best practice to ensure quality software is to use an SQA team that did not develop the software. Developers who have ideated, outlined, structured, and created the software are intimately aware of what they have created. It’s not uncommon for this close familiarity to make them blind to the large picture issues experienced by new users.

    Benefits of Software Quality Assurance

    Proper quality assurance requires an investment, but the benefits are well worth the cost.

    Save Money

    Error-prone and buggy software is costly. While you might be in a time crunch and need to hit a major deadline, it is always a better choice to create a functional and tested product, rather than rushing to roll out a product that will need patches and updates weeks after it is released.

    By taking the time to implement QA processes, you can significantly reduce maintenance costs.

    Save Time

    Developing software is a lot like developing a new skill. Just like it’s easier to address and fix a bad habit or problematic behavior early on when learning a new skill, it is always faster and easier to address an issue within a program toward the beginning of the process.

    By taking the time to run QA early and often within a project, you’re able to save significant time.

    Improve Consumer Confidence

    Software with your name on it, and the software you choose to use, tells volumes about your company and the quality of your work. Low-quality software that is difficult to use or full of errors and bugs projects the image that your company does sloppy work and doesn’t care about the quality of your product.

    QA can catch and address those errors before consumers ever interact with your software. This means consumers see only the best work and associate your company with high-quality software they can rely on.

    Increase Market Share

    High-quality software helps put your company in a stronger, more dominant market position. When your company becomes known for creating high-quality content, you create a higher demand for your product and increase your market share.

    Improve Security

    With the internet, everything connects, and every program and application becomes an important cybersecurity piece. If your program is used on a device that is connected to the internet, you need to be able to protect it against hacks and exploits.

    QA doesn’t just focus on the functional aspects of the program; it also focuses on gaps in cybersecurity. By applying a thorough QA process, you’re able to prevent data breaches better and ensure customer confidence and trust in your product.

    Choose Excel SoftSources

    Excel SoftSources can help you with every step of SQA. We can work with your software development team to perform SQA tests to ensure your programs are properly tested.

    Let’s work together! Contact Excel SoftSources today to find out how we can take the stress out of SQA and augment your IT staff as needed.

    Interested in learning more about software development and nearshore IT? Check out all our ultimate guides for more info.