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, 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.
This week we will take up the component parts before launching into a discussion of the Quality Assurance aspects in the next few weeks
A Systems Integrator brings together products from suppliers. Frequently these products already exist or they will be built upon a platform. They are not likely to fit the final customer needs 100% since anything that is generic and not custom built (and even custom built products sometimes) will not have been originally designed with the customer in mind.
The final client is looking for a custom built solution (made from components) that will suit their needs and will work the way they need it to. It must be fit for their use when installed. It may be a new install of something; it may be an upgrade of something that already exists or it may simply be replacing a component. Whichever it is, the final client is paying the System Integrator to make the components fit together and integrate with their existing systems in the prescribed manner.
Integrators are the ones providing the glue between the various components and making sure the final solution works. They need to know what the specific APIs for the bought products; the way it is going to fit into the final client and a myriad of other details that go alongside. They must also convey these back and forth between the Final Client and the Suppliers.
Next Week: The $10000 Quality Assurance question.