What Is Quality Assurance & Why Is It Essential?
11 May 2023Content
Laxmi Hari Nepal
Table of Contents
If you’ve decided to build a new mobile app, you might find yourself asking:
What is Quality Assurance in software development?
The Quality Assurance team’s adventure begins right from the very first stages of product development, where they plan the roadmap for the app’s success through rigorous testing and clearly-defined standards and processes.
In this article, you’ll learn all about Quality Assurance processes, the importance of QA testing, and how it all relates to software security.
What Is Quality Assurance (QA)?
In software development, Quality Assurance (QA) refers to the processes that aim to ensure that a software product meets certain standards and works as intended.
The focus of a product Quality Assurance system is to test for and identify any technical errors by implementing rigorous processes — this involves thorough planning, documentation, testing, and reviews to ensure the application meets all requirements.
To do so, QA testers normally follow a well-documented process, with clear quality objectives and standards. This encompasses various techniques, including quality audit and statistical process control, which enables organisations to monitor and control quality throughout the development lifecycle. As part of their role, they are responsible for testing and documenting their results to ensure the product is ready for launch.
The continuous improvement aspect of Quality Assurance allows organisations to identify areas for growth and implement the right fixes and solutions long-term.
Why Is Quality Assurance Necessary?
For starters, “QA plays a crucial role in ensuring quality and giving sign-off before the application is launched.” says Umesh Nepal, QA lead at EB Pearls.
QA experts aim for continuous improvement, monitoring feedback, and analysing metrics to ensure the software application is ready to be released.
By doing so, Quality Assurance focuses on enabling companies to earn the trust of their users who value their reliable, high-quality, and secure software.
In this competitive and ever-changing landscape of software development, Quality Assurance remains a crucial component for delivering exceptional digital products.
Benefits of Quality Assurance
- Building Reliable Products
QA works to ensure that a product is reliable and performs as intended before release. By conducting thorough testing and taking great quality control measures, QA identifies any technical issues and documents the entire process for the development team to further improve the product and win over their user base.
- Delivering Consistent Quality
QA establishes guidelines and standards that promote consistent quality throughout the development or production lifecycle. This way, organisations can deliver products that are consistently high-quality, which helps build customer trust and loyalty in the long run.
- Meeting Customer Expectations
QA experts are also responsible for understanding the needs and behaviour of potential users and then making sure the product meets their expectations. By engaging in comprehensive planning, documentation, and cross-team communication, QA teams ensure that the final product aligns with what the users want and expect from the app.
- Enhancing The User Experience
QA focuses not only on the functional aspects of the application but also on the overall user experience. By conducting various tests, QA teams can identify and address any usability issues, ensuring that the product is intuitive, easy to use, and provides a seamless experience — contributing to increased customer confidence and satisfaction.
- Maintaining a Positive Brand Reputation
Consistently delivering high-quality products through effective QA practices will also help you build a strong brand reputation. Positive recommendations and reviews from satisfied customers will contribute to your brand’s credibility and attract new customers.
Challenges in QA
As with most things in life and business, QA teams also face their fair share of challenges along the way, including:
- Gaps in real-world user experience — testing environments and real-life scenarios are not always identical, so QA experts need to “expect the unexpected.
- Misalignment between the developers and QA’s understanding of an issue — although QA experts and developers work towards the same goal, their vision for solving a problem might differ.
- Timeline expectation mismatch — great things take time, and it can be easy to underestimate the complexity of a software development project.
However, with the right set of skills, knowledge, and mindset, they can easily overcome these obstacles. “The importance of quality assurance is emphasized by acknowledging that applications are never completely bug-free, and the QA’s role extends beyond identifying bugs to analysing the application’s future performance,” says Umesh Nepal, QA lead at EB Pearls.
The Link Between Quality Assurance and Software Security
Security testing in QA assesses software’s ability to protect data, withstand attacks, and comply with industry standards. In this regard, QA experts conduct various tests, including:
- Authentication testing
- Penetration testing
- Encryption testing
- Compliance testing
By integrating security testing into QA processes, organisations are able to identify vulnerabilities early on, reducing the risk of security breaches while prioritising the safety of their customers’ data.
Quality Assurance at EB Pearls
How does EB Pearls handle the implementation of Quality Assurance practices in a software development project?
Umesh Nepal, QA professional, explains that “it begins with receiving the initial software requirement analysis, or SRS (Software Requirements Spec) briefing, which is then passed on to the Business Analyst team. The QA team reviews the SRS and raises queries. Then we create a plan to outline the testing phases throughout the project using the Sprint method. The test cases are reviewed by our senior QAs or through peer-to-peer review to ensure we’ve got everything covered.”
He continues “We also discuss whether automation is beneficial for that project, with an emphasis on minimising regression testing time and involving developers in the automation process.”
To stay on top of the game, at EB Pearls, we take professional and personal development seriously to make sure we provide the best software development services. This is why we “implement a Personal Development Program (PDP) to keep up with emerging technologies and design learning programs. We also conduct pilot projects to evaluate the efficiency and suitability of new technologies before integrating them into the mainstream process” says Umesh Nepal.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will Quality Assurance impact the timeline of my project?
Quality assurance activities are an integral part of the software development lifecycle, and they can have an impact on the project timeline.
While quality assurance ensures that the software meets the desired quality standards, it may require additional time for testing, bug fixing, and ensuring overall product stability.
The duration of the quality assurance phase will depend on factors such as the complexity of the project, the depth of testing required, and the size of the development team.
It’s essential to allocate sufficient time for quality assurance to avoid compromising the quality of the final product.
What measures are in place to ensure the security and privacy of my software?
To ensure software security and privacy, we:
– Comply with security standards and best practices to prevent vulnerabilities and protect against threats.
– Conduct regular security assessments and penetration testing to identify and address weaknesses.
– Implement data encryption and access controls for secure transmission and storage.
– Follow secure coding practices to minimize the risk of security flaws.
– Continuously monitor and apply updates to address newly discovered vulnerabilities.
How can I provide feedback or request changes during this stage?
The client’s engagement is essential at different stages, such as the initial documentation phase, addressing queries, testing third-party tools, and providing feedback during beta testing.
You will have access to a test environment, allowing them to interact with the software directly and provide feedback on specific functionalities or areas for improvement.
You can schedule sessions to offer feedback and request changes, ensuring timely addressing of their concerns during the Quality Assurance phase.
Your team can also submit formal change requests or provide feedback through documented channels like email or project management tools, ensuring proper recording and tracking of all requests.
How do you ensure ongoing maintenance after launching the app?
To ensure ongoing quality and maintenance after launching the app, we continuously monitor the software to identify issues and performance bottlenecks using monitoring tools and techniques.
We also deliver regular updates to address issues, improve functionality, and introduce new features based on client feedback and market demands, including bug fixes, security patches, and performance enhancements.
Furthermore, we provide customer support channels for clients to report issues or bugs, promptly addressing them with bug fixes or patches.
In conclusion, Quality Assurance processes are an integral part of software development and play a vital role in high-quality products.
By implementing effective quality assurance methods and following industry-specific standards in the Quality Assurance process, you can build an app that stands out in the overcrowded software application market.
Contact us to learn more about our software development services and how we can help you build successful applications.
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“We’re very happy with the results of EB Pearls’ work. Since its launch, the app has had over 7,000 downloads, with around 6,000 users completing the signup process in the first 6 weeks. ”
— Founder at Intro Dating