Is Quality Assurance Merely Testing?

Quality Assurance (QA) role is responsible for ensuring quality for the end client, and to help the development team identify problems early in the process. Surprisingly the people in this role are often known as “testers”. But is QA merely a testing role?

Quality Assurance is responsible for contributing to the final product. He/she needs to ensure that the final product being handed over to the client is not merely satisfying the client needs but also doing it in a manner which enhances the end user experience and leaves an impact on the customer. A QA must ask questions and think critically “Why this? Is there not a better way to achieve this?”

A QA engineer/analyst must perform the work of exploring and not merely checking, they are not a checkpost or police roadblock to filter out criminals. They are a value add. At every step the QA must be sure that the best practice has been followed and coded into the system. For ex: An average QA analyst would check the functionality, identify breakpoints and let things pass if all is in order. However, a good QA checks the functionality, researches for best practices and if required getting it implemented (subject to deadlines of the project) by the development team. Though it seems a tedious process but its a value add which an agency brings to the table when onboarding a client.

QA analyst/engineer must be involved from day 0 of the project kick off, they must be able to identify the possible pitfalls in the beginning rather than reworking once the feature is coded/implemented. As QA, the focus should be how to make it not work, do what it shouldn’t do,crash and burn, spit out money. If the development team is aware of what does not work they will make something which works and solves business objective saving time and money both for the client as well as the agency.

In brief, QA is not merely a checkpoint which comes at the end, but rather a stakeholder who ensures high quality deliverable is sent out every time.

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