“Quality in a Service or Product is not what you put into it. It is what the Client or Customer gets out of it” - Peter Drucker
QA stands for Quality Assurance. The American Society for Quality defines the term ‘quality’ as “the totality of features and characteristics of a product or service that bear on its ability to satisfy given needs”. Thus, quality refers to the inherent attributes of an entity. Assurance, on the other hand, refers to a positive affirmation of the quality of a product or service. It helps in instilling confidence.
Combining the two, we get the idea of Quality Assurance in Software Testing. While software quality might be hard to determine as quality itself is a subjective idea. However, QA ensures that the software quality of the end product conforms to the overall and scope agreed expectations. So what is QA Testing in Software? Let us answer the question.
In this blog, we shall try to answer the question of what is QA Testing? We shall try to understand what is Quality Assurance Software Testing in terms of its historical development under different development models. In other words, seeking to understand Software Quality Assurance against its historical backdrop.
Subsequently, you shall be provided with answers to what is Manual QA Testing as well as what is QA Automation Testing. We shall also look at what is QA Process in Software Testing as well as try and understand the distinction between Quality Assurance (QA) and Quality Control (QC) in Software Testing.
What is QA Testing in Software Testing?
In this section, we shall look at what is QA Testing.
Quality Assurance Software Testing is the mechanism of determining whether a software product and service meets an industry’s or company’s quality requirements or not. In other words, whether it fulfills the standards of being a high quality software or not.
It is the means for ensuring that the software product which is going to be released in the market is of the highest possible and best quality for the end users. It is an important activity which helps in affirming the quality of production in the Software Testing Life Cycle.
The utility of Quality Assurance Testing lies in establishing standard procedures for guaranteeing the quality of software product and helping the software team to deliver high quality software with consistent results. These quality benchmarks are important in order to make sure that the organization achieves its desired objectives.
In trying to understand what is QA in Software Testing, it is important to note that it does not specifically refer to actual software testing in the testing process. On the contrary, it emphasizes on a process oriented approach which could help in achieving the desired output.
What is Software QA Testing: The shift from the Waterfall to the Agile model
There has been a pragmatic shift in the form and nature of QA Testing with the gradual shift in the overall development model. In the traditional conventional approach, Quality Assurance Testing was largely conducted at the later stages of the development process. This was prevalent under the Waterfall model.
The norm was that the software product was fully developed and was then passed on to the QA team who was responsible for testing the software, ensuring quality and providing feedback.
With the adoption of the Agile model which rested on the principle of shorter sprints and the need to deliver high quality products with superior software quality within short span of time; the nature of QA testing underwent a change.
Under this model, the task of the QA team was not pushed to the later stages of the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). Instead, the QA team worked in liaison with the development team, right from the start and helped to introduce improvements regularly. Thus, a continuous liaison between the QA team and the development team became the new norm. Hence, assuring quality became a shared responsibility of developers, operators and QA testers alike.
The issue of what is QA Testing under the Agile model is one wherein the QA test results are incorporated into the software development process itself. Herein, quality is the fundamental guiding principle of the Software Development Lifecycle.
In trying to understand, what is QA Testing in Software Agile Methodology; one should remember that the software team follow the norm of short development cycles. This is followed by a Quality Control (QC) and Quality Assurance (QA) testing for the new feature which was just added. The results of this phase helps in determining the viability of the next development cycle.
What is the Utility of QA Testing in Software Testing?
1. Ensures product/software quality: Quality Assurance (QA) Testing helps to ensure the highest quality of a product by finding bugs and errors before they reach the end user, reducing the chances of customer dissatisfaction.
2. Improves functionality: By testing products for functionality through functional testing, the Quality Assurance team makes sure that a product is working as expected and meeting customer requirements.
3. Ensures compliance: Quality Assurance Testing helps to ensure that products comply with relevant standards, regulations and laws.
4. Saves time: By testing for bugs early on in the development process, QA Testing can save a lot of time in the long run by preventing the need for costly bug fixes later on.
5. Saves money: Since Quality Assurance Testing helps to find any potential issues before they become major problems, it can help to save a company from incurring additional costs due to extensive bug-fixing or product recall costs down the line of the software development process.
6. Prevents security breaches: By testing all aspects of a product’s security measures, QA Testing can help to prevent security breaches that could have a negative impact on a company’s reputation.
7. Increases customer satisfaction: By ensuring quality, functionality and compliance, QA Software Testing helps to increase customer satisfaction while also reducing customer complaints and returns.
8. Facilitates continuous improvement: By keeping track of how a product is performing, Quality Assurance Testing test strategy helps companies identify areas where improvements can be made in order to create better products in the future.
9. Helps identify training needs: By software testing to make sure that users are able to successfully use a product, Quality Assurance Testing can help to identify any training needs that may be necessary in order for employees or customers to fully utilize the product.
10. Enhances user experience: By finding and fixing bugs and other issues, Software Quality Assurance Testing helps to create a better user experience which leads to increased customer loyalty. This can also help a company's products stand out from the competition.
Aspiring to become a QA Tester?, do read our blog on "How to become a QA Tester?: Let us Find out"