Starting Quality Assurance – Part 4

Starting Quality Assurance can be difficult when there are existing projects already on the go, new projects starting up and operations running at full speed. There never seems to be a good time to say “We are going to launch into Quality Assurance activities and start improving our processes”.  There will always be a more important operation or project related activity that needs to be solved and that takes precedence.

Last week we discussed How we would want to start Quality Assurance. This week we want to look at a few examples.

It would be nice to implement a complete Quality Assurance program using a Big Bang approach. We would decide all that needed to be done; implement all the changes and move forward. That rarely works (especially in an existing organization) and is often followed by a gnab gib (which is a Big Bang in reverse) also known as the Big Crunch. Or else we end up like the day Sweden switched the driving side.

Since we are not dealing on a universe or country level, we can pick and choose what to do first.

Some obvious examples include the following Quality Control Processes;

  1. Centralize defect reporting for a single project in a tool.
  2. Centralize test case management for a single project in a tool.
  3. Create standards for defect priorities and severities appropriate to your organization.
  4. Add a checkbox identifying test cases that might be needed for regression and start designating the test cases as they are being executed.
  5. Set priorities on test cases so we know which ones are important.
  6. Carry out a minimal informal Lessons Learned on a small project. No formal report is required at this stage; just people’s opinions.
  7. See what reporting could be made available without impact on the people who are testing.

In all cases we are looking for small easy to implement changes that people can do with minimal adverse time impact.

Next Week: Malthus on Testing

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