The Fundamentals of a Great Software Solution: Quality Assurance and Control

The Fundamentals of a Great Software Solution: Quality Assurance and Control

By Tonny  |  Mar 11, 2022

To ensure that we continue to offer high quality software solutions to our partners, clients, and end-users, we at iPF Softwares have engaged in building quality assurance and control processes and systems that are simple, effective, and reliable.


Behind any great customer experience is normally a great team of unsung quality assurance and control heroes who are constantly focused on making sure the product quality doesn’t falter. 


Most people like to dismiss us as mere testers or as one of our clients at iPF Softwares calls us “ Kamati ya Roho mbaya” a common Swahili slang meaning “ A team of critics ”.  


My name is Tonny, and I work as a Quality Assurance & Control Representative at iPF Softwares, an award-winning software development company developing impactful digital solutions for African businesses, I am eager to share with you the difference between quality assurance and quality control in the context of software development, as well as how we're integrating the two into our everyday software development life cycle.


As a Quality Assurance & Control Representative, I have often been asked ; 

  • What’s the difference between Quality Assurance and Quality Control? 
  • Why is quality assurance better than quality control? 
  • Why do we need quality control if we have already assured the quality?



Myth: Quality Assurance is Quality Control 

Quality Assurance and Quality Control are the two most important aspects of quality management in all verticals.  These terms are frequently confused and, as a result, are used interchangeably.


What is Quality Assurance in Software Development? 

Quality Assurance (QA) is a process that ensures that all software engineering processes, methodologies, activities, and products meet the demands of the end-user and complete the intended task.


It comprises creating processes for each stage of development in order to eliminate flaws and defects throughout the development period, as well as evaluating the quality of the software.


What is Quality Control in Software Development?

Quality control (QC ) is the process that ensures or verifies the product does what it was intended to do.


It assesses the quality of the "end products" and the ultimate output rather than the procedures utilized to make a product.

  • Quality Control (QC ) is focused on locating flaws in the developed solution. 
  • QC ensures that the project's approaches, techniques, methods, and processes are implemented correctly. 
  • QC activities ensure that the project deliverables fulfill the established quality requirements by monitoring and verifying them. 


In a nutshell, quality control is a systematic set of techniques used to ensure the quality of software products or services. 


The quality control process ensures that the software product meets the actual needs by testing and reviewing the software product's functional and non-functional requirements.


Software Quality Assurance Processes

Review documentation and analysis

Quality Assurance representative is involved in the analysis and definition of software requirements, both functional and non-functional. 


During this stage, we have an opportunity to share requirements that are consistent, comprehensive, traceable, and clearly marked. 


This process helps the QA team to design test cases specifically tailored to the product or feature to be tested.


Preparation of test plan against requirements

The data gathered during the requirements analysis phase is utilized to plan all of the tests that are required.


The software testing strategy, the scope of testing, and deadlines are all part of the test plan.


It also specifies the types and degrees of testing that must be performed, as well as the procedures and tools for tracking issues, and assigns resources and duties to individual testers.


Preparation of test cases

At this phase, we apply our understanding of the features being developed to construct the test cases we have prepared.


A test cases checklist describes the preconditions, expected outcomes, and postconditions of a specified test scenario in order to ensure that a feature meets the established acceptance criteria.


Software Test Execution & Defect Reporting 

Product development starts and now our watch begins and it shall not end until a quality product is shipped. 


We shall take no bugs, produce no more defects from features current or forthcoming, and we shall stand guard for adherence to quality standards. 


If you caught my subtle nod to the night’s watch oath, pat yourself on the back, you’re a true Game of Thrones fan : )


Here at iPF Softwares, testing is the responsibility of every expert involved in the software development life cycle.


This includes everyone on the design team, engineering team, QA team, and our clients, who (together with a group of handpicked beta testers) are often early users of the product and our first line of quality assurance outside of iPF Softwares.


At the design level, once our UI / UX design team has completed product or feature design, we conduct a pre usability test where we put ourselves in the point of view of the user and test the usability of the design based on the provided visuals(and sometimes interactive prototypes)  to see if the product is simple to use and behaves in the manner specified by the acceptance criteria.


Our engineers do their part by testing the features as they build them as well as writing automated tests. In a nutshell, test automation is a software testing method that uses automation technologies and computing resources rather than human testers to perform tests.


Our engineering team creates the automated tests and then our  DevOps team configures deployment pipelines that ensure that only features that have passed automated tests can be deployed and reach end-users.


Manual testing as the name implies is a test procedure in which we manually evaluate a software product in order to find defects.


To accomplish this, the Quality Assurance team follows a well-defined test plan that outlines a series of distinct test scenarios. 


We've become so efficient and there has been so much fun testing since we developed and documented the testing strategy that our department has been dubbed "Kamati ya Roho mbaya," which we take as a compliment because it means we're catching problems before they reach our customers, or in more technical terms, doing our job:)


We obviously have nothing against our engineers, but because our job is literally to expose their flaws and surface things they missed during implementation, they occasionally get annoyed by our constant obsession with small details, but we remind them that it's all in the pursuit of quality, and they just nod and smile.


Tools we use for Quality Control 

You are probably wondering after all these quality assurance activities why we would even need quality control. 


Well, the main objective of the Quality Control processes is to​ ensure that the product satisfies performance and usability requirements. 


While these standards are established throughout the software development process, quality control testing frequently helps to improve them. 


Below are a few tools we use for quality control of software solutions developed at iPF Softwares.

  1. Bugsnag: We use bugsnag to track application stability so that our team can make data-driven choices about whether to add new features or resolve bugs.
  2. Firebase: ​​ We leverage Google's Firebase Crashlytics to prioritize and solve your most common crashes on iOS and Android apps based on the impact on actual users.
  3. Google’s Lighthouse: We use Google Lighthouse to improve the performance, quality, and accuracy of our partners' online apps and websites.
  4. Circle CI: We use CircleCI for continuous integration and deployment to automate deployment and ensure that we do not push breaking changes to the live environment by identifying and finding faults more rapidly.

And so much more


Bottom-line

Despite the popular misconception that our sole responsibility as software testers is to detect flaws, testing and quality assurance have a bigger influence on the success of the final product.


The Quality Assurance department at iPF Softwares provides great value to our clients, partners, and end-users, we make sure the software application is designed and developed to meet the agreed quality and usability.


Need to see our Quality Assurance and Control department in action? Contact us, to book a brief meeting with our business development director.





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