3 Ways to Improve your QA Strategy
Companies that survive in the software industry focus on innovation, speed, and agility. Teams too-often forget about quality when they're working hard to speed up the delivery of innovative software. A lack of strategic vision in regards to software quality management, can lead to poor customer experiences, and even damage long-term business outcomes. So, how can development teams contribute to test strategies that prioritize high-quality software and the speed of delivery?
Rainforest's Sr. QA Professional Services Consultant, Jeff Pineda, and QA Implementation Specialist, Cambrie Marks, recently got together for a webinar and discussed how to develop with quality in mind. They highlighted these three critical steps to power up a QA strategy.
1. Evaluate Your Quality Process to Learn How to Improve It
We often see that QA is not a priority with smaller teams, who are working really hard to build their product to be competitive in their space. While focusing on consistent development and shipping, quality is often not a priority until it has to be.
-Cambrie Marks, QA Implementation Specialist
It's not uncommon for development team's quality processes to grow from and ad hoc approach to testing, especially in the early days when the company is small and often doesn't have a dedicated software quality owner. Evaluating what exactly your team's quality process looks like, by performing an audit, will set you up for QA strategy improvement success.
Consider these five questions when doing your quality process audit:
- Who owns software quality?
- Are you measuring software quality, and if so, how?
- How does your team currently manage test cases?
- How do you approach testing and coverage of your product?
- What are your biggest challenges with software quality?
The trick to begin achieving more business success with your QA strategy, is to thoroughly understand what your current QA process looks like and uncover what is (and is not) working.
2. Be Strategic with Test Case Management
Test smarter, not harder.
- Jeff Pineda, Sr. QA Professional Services Consultant
You can pack a much bigger punch with your QA process (without using more resources) by being strategic with test case management. Taking an ad hoc approach to software quality testing is not a scalable way to do QA. Adopting agile principles and approaching triage with strategic prioritization is much more effective and efficient.
Start by tying your software testing strategy to your company's overall business goals. Look at your business data -e.g. which parts of the website users spend the most time on- then use that information to prioritize what to test and how often. By tying your QA strategy to your company's goals, your team will positively impact business outcomes.
3. Get QA Infrastructure and Set It Up for CI/CD Success
Does your team have a software testing environment? If not, it's time to invest in one.
Having a testing environment that is as close to production as possible, without actually being your production environment, is essential to continuous delivery success.
For the QA process to be as efficient as possible it needs to integrate into development processes and workflows. Integrating with your team's essential CI server helps align functional testing with unit testing, and integrating test run updates with communication tools -like Slack- will help set your team up for software quality success.
Learn More About How to Build Test Suites Strategically to Maximize Impact
We have great resources to get you started. To learn more about how to measure software quality and how to manage test cases, check out our on-demand webinar "Developing With Quality In Mind: A Blueprint to Power Up Your QA Strategy." Our free resource, QA University, is also available to you for even more info on how to manage successful QA strategies.