Over the next few weeks, the NVP blog will focus on Software Testing for System Integrators. From NVP’s point of view, a System Integrator is someone who brings together a number of applications (from vendors), adds some glue and ends up with a solution for the organization they are working with. This seems to agree with the Wikipedia definition fairly closely. So where does Quality Assurance come into this? One would like to think early or very early in the process but that’s not always the case.

The $10,000 Quality Assurance question.

Last week we promised the $10,000 Quality Assurance question. But in fact, there are actually two questions with several variants and here they are:

  1. What did you request from your vendors in terms of Quality Assurance?
  2. What did you promise your final client in terms of Quality Assurance?

Taking the first question into consideration, here are other things to consider:

  • What does the contract state about Quality Assurance or Software Testing?
  • Are the expectations documented?
  • What can we demand in terms of proof?
  • What are the System Integrator’s deliverables to the vendors?

Now take the second question about promises to the final client, and the above becomes reversed.

  • What does the contract state about Quality Assurance or Software Testing?
  • Are there expectations documented?
  • What is expected in terms of proof?
  • What are the System Integrator’s deliverables to the final client?

A System Integrator often acts a bridge with some support provided, but if the one requiring the testing cannot answer the above two questions and the subsidiary questions as outlined, then more research has to be done before the project starts. Without answers to these two questions, it will be very difficult to get started on Quality Assurance activities and be successful in the process.

Next Week: Answers to those questions…