Signs You Need a New QA Platform

With the right platform, QA can help you get higher-quality software to market faster

Quality testing has a cross-functional, strategic impact on corporate risk management, revenue and reputation, but it often doesn’t garner full appreciation for its role, often evidenced by a lack of investment in a best-in-class QA platform. Signs that an existing solution isn’t sufficient include:

  • Difficulty meeting industry and compliance standards
  • Feedback from customers that software functionality or user experience falls short of expectations
  • Difficulty demonstrating ROI
  • Desire for a more consistent, accurate and rapid release schedule
  • Increased demand for products or services reliant on regular releases
  • Known vulnerability to data breaches
  • Customer-discovered problems in live software
  • Inadequate communication between testers and development
  • Disparate testing solutions across departments

What Triggers a QA Platform Evaluation?

In most cases, several small, subtle errors, setbacks and missed opportunities accumulate to trigger the search for a new QA platform. Testers — sometimes the only stakeholders to feel the frustration — often have a hard time getting directors to evaluate the current testing stack and seek a new QA platform.

When a significant event occurs, such as a buggy release, a change in strategy or a corporate merger, senior managers are more likely to engage the testing team in the decision to move to a new platform. In either case, organizations that proactively review their options before licenses expire better their chances of finding a robust testing platform that enables comprehensive test planning, execution and traceability, drives down risks and costs (in gaffes moving to production, broken timelines, etc.) and raises revenue potential.

Examine the KPIs Affected by Quality

To proactively advance beyond the competition, start by asking the following questions about your organization.

  • Where are the bottlenecks in our software development lifecycle? What part of the process consumes the most time?
  • Where are teams along the lifecycle working erratically, sometimes overwhelmed by tasks and other times waiting for work?
  • How can the linear nature of the lifecycle become more collaborative? Where can testing begin earlier?
  • How long is it taking quality to test developers’ code?
  • Does our current platform give us enough visibility to answer these questions?

Answering these questions can help you identify what to look for in a QA platform that suitsyour development approach and strategic objectives. Enlist senior leadership to define what software should do and what the optimal customer experience should be, and work backward from there.

Making the Case for a New QA Platform

Effective QA platforms must meet the needs of an increasingly diverse and collaborative development environment. According to VersionOne’s 2017 State of Agile report, 94% of companies now report using agile methodology, and 71% are employing DevOps practices for some projects.

In 2016, testing reached a tipping point. For the first time, agile-compatible testing tools outnumbered the use of manual spreadsheets, according to the report, signaling a growing emphasis on quality, and on finding the right tools to prioritize it. To ensure on-time, secure and bug-free releases in a changing development environment, software developers and testers need to be in constant communication and continuous test mode. They need versatile tools that can measure efforts across a variety of development methodologies and along each project’s lifecycle to help ensure performance and quality.

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