• How to do Quality Assurance (QA) in a high-velocity testing program

    Quality assurance is a necessary part of any testing program. It ensures that the product being produced meets the requirements of the customer and that it can be used safely and effectively. 

    Quality assurance is also important in maintaining a good reputation for your product or service. 

    In high-velocity testing programs, quality assurance can sometimes be overlooked as there are many samples to test and tests to conduct on each sample. 

    However, it is essential that you conduct quality assurance on every single sample you receive. 

    This will ensure that everything is correct when it comes to conducting your tests or analyzing your results. 

    In this article, we’ll look at what’s quality assurance in an experimentation program, the difference between quality assurance and quality control, what testing velocity is, and the proper testing tool.

    Ready to learn more about this interesting topic?

    Let’s get started.

    What is Quality Assurance (QA)?

    Quality Assurance (QA) plays a vital role in the success of any software project. It can be defined as a process of assessing, validating, and verifying the quality of a software product. 

    QA aims to find defects and other issues in the software product before it is released.

    Quality assurance is done by testing professionals responsible for ensuring that the software meets the requirements and specifications set by the client or end user. 

    They are essential in ensuring that the final product is ready for release and meets all quality standards.

    Moreover, the process goes beyond just testing and adding more tests; it includes all activities related to monitoring, measuring, and improving the test quality processes throughout development and post-release maintenance cycles.

    Quality assurance should not be confused with quality control (QC). 

    Quality control refers to performing tests on production samples after they have been manufactured to ensure that they meet specifications and standards before they are released. 

    On the other hand, quality assurance refers to conducting tests on raw materials before they enter production so that problems can be identified early on before more time and money is wasted making defective products or services.

    What is a High-velocity testing program? 

    high-velocity testing program is designed to produce software faster than traditional approaches. There are many different ways to approach this development, but the key point is that it’s focused on speed. 

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    The goal is to get software into production as quickly as possible so that you can start getting feedback from users and customers.

    Establishing a QA team and its processes

    The primary purpose of a QA team is to ensure that the software being developed is of high quality. The QA team works with developers to understand the requirements and then tests the product against these requirements.

    The QA team also ensures that the product performs as expected and does not contain any bugs or errors. It also provides feedback on how to improve the product.

    The QA team should include at least one tester and one analyst, who are responsible for finding defects in the software and reporting them to developers. 

    The role of an analyst is to create test cases that testers can use during testing activities. These test cases describe how tests should be conducted, what should be tested, what should be monitored during testing, etc.

    The first step in building a quality assurance department is establishing what kind of work will be done by the QA team. 

    This can be anything from manual testing to automated test development and maintenance. In addition, you need to know what type of resources the team will have available. This includes both budget and staff time.

    The next step is defining how the QA process will work within your company’s structure. This includes creating job titles and responsibilities and outlining reporting structures and communication protocols between testers and stakeholders.

    Use automation as much as possible (getting the right tools)

    You need some tools — specifically, automated testing tools — that allow you to scale up your QA efforts while still maintaining high-quality standards. 

    Here’s how:

    Do automated functional testing throughout the development process i.e. consistent testing.

    Automated functional testing is one of the best ways for QA teams to keep up with high-velocity programs because it lets them test continuously without slowing down development teams too much.

    Automated functional tests have several advantages over manual testing: They don’t require human intervention; they can be run multiple times daily.

    However, note that when selecting a quality assessment testing tool, choose a tool created and validated to assess the study designs of your included articles.

    For instance, the PractiTest can visualize your QA process’s metrics data, give you precise datasets and create a clear overview.

                                      (Source)

    Breaking down the QA process into steps

    The first step in creating a high-velocity QA program is breaking down the entire process into steps. 

    What does this mean? It means breaking down each component of your product or service into smaller pieces so that you can focus on each piece rather than trying to do everything at once.

    The process of QA can be broken down into the following steps:

    • Identify organizational goals: To do this, you need to know your company’s goals. By understanding these goals, you can identify the most important ones and determine how they align with your current project’s objectives. This will help you determine what kind of testing is necessary for each project or product release.
    • Identify internal and external customers: The next step in creating a high-velocity testing program is identifying your internal and external customers. Internal customers include anyone who needs access to the product being tested — including employees who use it on a daily basis or stakeholders who have oversight over its development. External customers are anyone outside of your company who wants to use or purchase the product once it’s released into the market; this could include clients or potential new hires.
    • Customer feedback: Identify how customers use products after they’re released into the market so you can make improvements based on their feedback and make updates accordingly. 
    • Implementing continuous improvements: This step involves identifying and quantifying errors in a software application, then using that information to improve the code base.
    • Choosing Quality Management Software: Quality management software helps companies perform quality assurance on their products. It can also help maintain documentation about all aspects of the product development process. 
    • Measuring Results: Once you have implemented your chosen testing tool, you need to measure how successfully it has improved your QA program (test results). This can be done by looking at key performance indicators (KPIs) such as test case coverage and defect reduction over time. 

    Conducting testing on each sample

    If you’re conducting a high-velocity testing program, you need to make sure that your quality assurance is up to the task. That means using the right tools and techniques to ensure that each sample is tested correctly.

    There are two ways to conduct quality assurance in a high-velocity testing program:

    • Run tests on each sample: This approach involves running the same test multiple times on samples from different lots. If any of the samples fail, you know there’s an issue with your process or equipment.
    • Run tests on each lot: This approach involves running multiple tests on samples from a single lot and comparing them against one another. If any of them fail, you know there’s an issue with your process or equipment.

    This way, you can see how quickly it takes for your samples to arrive at your facility and how long it takes for them to be processed by the lab. 

    You’ll also be able to see how many samples are actually tested successfully and how many are rejected or returned due to errors or issues with shipping or processing.

    Set up a two-step or three-step process to review test cases before they’re implemented by automated test scripts

    In a high-velocity testing program, it’s important to implement a QA process that keeps quality high without slowing down development. 

    The best way to do this is to set up a two-step or three-step process in which test cases are reviewed before they’re implemented by automated test scripts. You want to ensure that testing capacity and testing coverage are accounted for.

    The first step is for the QA tester to review the test case and ensure it covers all of the necessary requirements. This takes place before any automated scripts are written for the test case. 

    The second step is for the QA tester to write automated scripts for each test case. This may require some additional work in creating new test cases if they don’t already exist, but it’s still faster than writing manual tests that have no automation behind them. 

    The third step is for other developers or testers to review these automated tests before executing them against production code by an automated build system. This ensures that there are no bugs in these tests themselves and that they’re adequately testing production code conditions and simulated use cases.

    Implement a DevOps-based testing model

    High-velocity testing programs aim to deliver high value quickly. To achieve that, they need to be able to release new features on a regular basis. But this poses a challenge regarding QA because it’s hard to test something that hasn’t been built yet!

    The solution is to implement a DevOps-based testing model. 

    For the uninitiated, DevOps is a set of practices that facilitates communication and collaboration between software developers and IT professionals and allows you to continuously test your application from the start (requirements gathering) till the finish (release).

    It also promotes automation, continuous delivery and deployment, and close feedback loops between developers and testers at all stages of the development lifecycle.

    If you look at the statistics, 83% of IT decision-makers implemented DevOps practices to unlock higher business value in 2021 – while 61% say implementing DevOps enabled them to produce higher-quality deliverables in 2020.

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    And if you look at the use cases of DevOps, United Airlines found that it saved $500,000 by switching to continuous testing standards and boosted its code coverage by 85%.

    Final Thoughts! 

    It’s important to find your sweet spot with QA, whether that means you’re a big believer in the cycle-based process or prefer the more traditional waterfall approach. 

    Whichever you choose, the key is to find something that works for your particular organization. Remember, software quality isn’t an end point; it should be something that guides every decision your team makes along the way.

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