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I’ll start this article with John Ruskin’s famous quote: “Quality is never an accident. It is always the result of intelligent effort.” You’ll agree with this statement, right? It applies in almost every aspect of our lives. The quality assurance in software development process follows the same rule. Software quality assurance requires strategy, planning, and dedicated resources. In this article, I have compiled a list of core quality assurance activities that are essential for successful software development. Let’s dig in.

What is Software Quality Assurance Process?

In simple words, software quality assurance or SQA is a continuous, systematic process that covers all functional, non-functional, and business requirements. QA ensures that the potential failures are identified and controlled proactively, which otherwise might cause huge financial and reputation loss. The software quality assurance lifecycle model should ideally be synchronized with the software development lifecycle model.

Usually, software testing and SQA are the terms used synonymously with each other. However, SQA is a broader field that encompasses quality control and software testing. QA even takes care of the quality improvement in the software testing process itself. 

Because you are interested in this article, we recommend you to have a look at these relevant blog posts as well:

Test Automation Challenges and Benefits by Sidra Ijaz.

Software Testing Tips for Proper Quality Assurance by Sadia Mehmood.

Why is Software Quality Assurance Important?

You might be familiar with the phrase ‘to err is human’. In the case of software development, the quality glitches and errors cost quite high. You cannot just forgive these errors. I am quoting the alarming statistics mentioned in Forbe’s recent article here:

‘In 2018, poor-quality software cost organizations $2.8 trillion in the U.S. alone, according to the Consortium for IT Software Quality (CISQ).’

So bad quality can cost you money. Also, you tend to lose your customers!

‘According to Statista, more than a third of smartphone users delete an app when they encounter a software glitch or bug!’

What to Look For in Software Quality Assurance Services?

The answer to this question is simple. First of all, such services must know the core software quality assurance activities involved in software development. Secondly, they must have skilled QA professionals in their team. Let’s have a detailed look at them. 

Top Five QA Activities in Software Development

Plan Software Quality Process

As discussed earlier in this article, software quality and testing is a continuous process.  One should properly plan and execute SQA activities throughout the software development cycle. Therefore, establishing the SQA process from the start is key to optimizing quality assurance across the development and deployment of software. SQA plan serves as a guideline for the QA, QC, and software testing teams and can be evolved over time to fit the team’s needs. The plan is built on software and business requirement specifications, software development methodology, software testing ideas, and testing methodologies.

Software-Quality_Assurance_Activities
source: Scott Graham, Unsplash

Communication and Documentation

Remember, you cannot ensure QA in isolation. Effective collaboration and communication between the development, testing, and deployment teams is a must for software quality. One way to keep communication smooth is documentation. There should be clear documentation of test plans, test cases, defect reports, test automation reports, and QA audits. The documentation should be concise, clear, and easily understandable.

Enforce SQA Process Adherence

There are two main ways to enforce SQA process adherence. Firstly, make sure to do project evaluation when necessary. Secondly, monitor the defined QA processes. Again, documentation plays a key role in the process monitoring. You can do this by matching the actually taken steps against the documented steps.

Perform Quality Assurance Audits

SQA audits verify if the developers and testers are taking correct steps during software development.  Moreover. SQA auditors check the compliance of quality standards and strategies.

Manage Change Impact and Regression Testing

First of all, SQA engineers should evaluate and manage the change impact after detecting and fixing a bug. Moreover, they should also perform regression testing in case of any change made in the software.

Skills Required in Quality Assurance Team

Whether you are establishing  your own SQA team, or are planning to hire software quality assurance services, make sure that they have the following skills:

  • They should be proficient in both manual and automated testing techniques.
  • Moreover, they must be aware of the software development lifecycle, agile methodologies, and test automation tools.
  • SQA engineers must be critical thinkers. One cannot become a good SQA engineer without attention to detail.
  • Furthermore, QA engineers must have excellent communication and collaboration skills. Remembers, QA cannot be done in isolation.

Conclusion

“Quality is not an act. It is a habit.” – Aristotle

In this article, we explored the essential quality assurance activities involved in successful software development. I hope that this article has answered all your queries. In case you need expert QA engineers in your team, contact us right away.

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