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What is Software Quality Assurance?

Quality Assurance makes sure the project will be completed based on the previously agreed specifications, standards and functionality required without defects and possible problems. It monitors and tries to improve the development process from the beginning of the project to ensure this. It is oriented to "prevention".

Quality Assurance Overview
Quality assurance is defined as a set of procedures designed to ensure that quality standards and processes are adhered to, and that the final product meets or exceeds the required technical and performance requirements. Quality assurance covers activities including product design, development, production, installation, and servicing, as well as proper documentation. Quality assurance is a widely used approach in the the manufacturing and software industries to improve upon product delivery and the meeting of customer requirements and expectations.

Quality Assurance Concepts
With the main goal of quality assurance (also often shorted to just QA) being to ensure that the final product meets or exceeds the customer's expectations, there are a variety of main processes involved. These can be described as:

  • Ensuring a quality assurance mindset throughout the company, including in it's infrastructure, it's controls and job management, it worker's competence, skills and experience, as well as less tangible elements such as company morale and motivation, corporate culture, and integrity

  • Using statistical controls to monitor, report and analyze problem areas, and work immediately to reduce or eliminate them. In many cases, this area of quality assurance falls back on ideas such as statistical process control and six sigma. Statistical control generally includes sampling and testing product at random, measuring tolerances and correcting issues before they become widespread or worsen.

  • Full testing of products - whether referring to manufactured products or software products, this step of quality assurance looks at testing a product to it's point of failure and then measuring variables or identifying problem areas (bugs). In addition to hardware issues, this step includes the proper training of employees to spot issues, as well as the make sure they are adhering to known process that will not result in premature failure of the product

Implementing Quality Assurance
Thankfully, there are a wide variety of services, software and other solutions designed to help companies implement quality assurance into any type of factory or software environment. Examples include services that offer quality assurance training, to vendors that sell software and reporting tools designed to augment quality assurance processes. From the smallest of assembly lines, to products with thousands of parts and assembly steps, quality assurance processes can often create critical efficiencies, reduce costs, and enhance customer satisfaction.

 

 

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