Product Managers are constantly striving to achieve three key outcomes from their QA and testing teams: 1) increased speed to market, 2) reduced cost of testing, and of course, 3) improved software quality.
While most Product Managers will agree that the above three are indeed at the top of the list of their priorities; a lot of the IT organizations lack clear pathways and QA approaches required to achieve uncompromising software quality in a fast and cost effective manner.
There are pragmatic practices that Product Managers can follow to achieve profitable outcomes from their QA and testing initiatives.
Below are the top five pointers that can help Product Managers to improve their software quality while still being able to accelerate release cycles:
1) Outline a focused approach to QA & testing: A focused approach to QA & testing optimizes testing performance. Application Development (AD) teams are increasingly pressured to build and deploy software fast to meet delivery deadlines. Very few organizations have time or resources to deploy a comprehensive software quality assurance program. It is key to clearly define your QA goals and develop broad and quality metrics that are traceable.
2) Start off by setting the requirements right: An issue caught right at the start of a Software Test Life Cycle (STLC) is likely to cause less damage as opposed to a bug that goes into production. It’s quite obvious, yet many development teams face the consequences of neglecting this factor.
3) Automate where possible: Test automation will free up your resources from repetitive tasks. This will allow the to focus on high-priority tasks– ultimately resulting in increased productivity, output and accuracy.
4) Leverage task management and engagement best-practices: Managing frequent change requests while working against tight deadlines can be detrimental to product quality. Testing teams can avoid this trap by leveraging Jira boards and make the best of Scrum and Kanban methodologies.
5) Go Lean-Agile where there are distributed teams involved: Lean-Agile methodologies bring team focus on the most critical features and break cycles into sprints– making tasks more manageable and avoiding overloads.
Followed thoroughly, the above practices can enable Product managers to achieve their critical QA and testing goals.