Are you eager to get the most out of your outsourced Quality Assurance (QA) team? Then, try our tips on sourcing and hiring bug-squashers that will keep your project on schedule.
Whether you’re a Software as a Subscription (SaaS) company, engineering software for the Internet of Things (IoT), or developing a new mobile game, it’s crucial to deliver a product that works.
But how do you get the most out of your outsourced QA team? We’ll walk you through everything you need to know. Just keep in mind that the advice in this article is not intended to take the place of legal counsel.
Determine if outsourcing QA is the right solution for your company
In today’s world, small businesses are streamlined, efficient, and agile. And one of the best ways to achieve that is to utilize a hybrid approach with a core, onboarded team, and a scalable, flexible workforce.
But what does that mean about QA resourcing? It might be tempting to build an internal department dedicated to testing your software. However, given the various outsourcing models like staff augmentation, managed teams, and project outsourcing, many cost-efficient options are available to assist you.
The general litmus test is that, unless your business requires you to shoulder the cost to maintain an in-house testing team, outsourcing is the cheaper and more efficient way to bring talent with the right expertise into your project.
Finding an outsourced QA team
A quick Google search for outsourced QA may leave you neck-deep in choices and unsure how to find solid ground. Of course, referrals are always an excellent way to hone in on talented teams, but there are a few key factors to keep in mind that can help you narrow down your selection.
Do they have experience working with projects similar to yours in size, scope, and purpose?
Do they have references who are pleased with their work?
Do they have access to the software environments your clients will use to interact with your product?
Do their specialists bring added value that your in-house team can’t provide?
Do any of them seem unreasonably expensive or, even worse, too affordable to be true?
Do they suggest similar sizes of teams to complete your project by the given deadline?
Do they maintain clear and consistent communication with you during the selection process?
Websites like GoodFirms and Clutch can allow you to see previous clients’ feedback for their QA engineers. Once you’ve selected your outsourced QA team, it’s time to establish your working parameters.
Decide on the QA solutions that are best for your project
If this is your first foray into QA, it’s helpful to know the wide variety of available services.
Automated QA: Testing performed by software that provides quick diagnostic analysis of your code and programs
Manual QA: Testing performed by humans that, while slower, is more likely to replicate the kind of bugs your users will encounter
Graphical User Interface (GUI) testing: Examines the part of the product that your customers will encounter and simulates mouse clicks, keystrokes, taps, swipes, and other actions users can take to interact with your software
Application Programming Interface (API) testing: Tests the software at its programming level to determine its functionality
Unit Tests: Check a unit of software to determine that it functions correctly
Integration Tests: Analyze whether the units of software are communicating between each other and communicating correctly
Black Box Tests: Tests whether the application works as intended without specifically analyzing the units or code of the program
End-To-End Tests: Replicates real-life use of the program to ensure complete functionality
Regression Tests: Test that additions and changes to the software don’t introduce new errors
Your QA team will likely utilize all of the above techniques to ensure your project works as intended during each stage of development.
Establish a documentation-first action plan to keep you and your QA team accountable
If communication is the key to success, then maintaining a documentation-first culture at your company is the language you’ll use to communicate. Your QA team must understand their deadlines, the modules they’ll be integrating with, and their scope of work.
The QA team needs to understand your software’s purpose and be guided to help you achieve the end-user experience you have in mind. Therefore, the more you can share your company’s culture and the guiding principles behind your product’s development, the more efficiently they can identify QA problems that interfere with that vision.
Maintain and communicate a schedule that reflects your current conditions
Delays happen. Bugs happen. And so do sick days, missed deadlines, and jury duty. All of these things can affect your deadlines and the exact window that your outsourced QA team will be working in, and it would benefit everyone to be on the same page when something moves.
Manage your invoices and payments with Liquid.
Once you’ve hired your outsourced QA team, Liquid is the easy way to manage your engagements. Liquid helps you mitigate compliance risk with freelancers and vendors while saving you time and money. Onboarding a new QA team takes less than a minute and comes complete with standard and customizable Independent Contractor Agreements. Specify tasks and deliverables with the Work Order feature and avoid duplicate billing errors or overbilling with Work Order to Invoice Matching. And with Liquid’s ability to send payments to 175+ countries, you can work with freelance writers and copywriters around the world.