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Baking quality into your project – like baking a cake

Recently one of the projects that I was involved in was finished. The testing was blocked at the end phase, and the cost was almost exhausted even though the testing had not been finished when testers were rolled off.

People always talk about quality, and most people agree that quality should be the most important aspect of a successful project/product, but the quality I am talking about is based on the business vision and value instead of only considering technical perspectives. The reality is that often times, teams will cut quality to meet a fixed schedule or cost when issues arise.

As a quality assurance analyst, I would like to outline a method for building up quality in your project. It can be likened to baking a cake. You cannot spend half the time to bake a cake with double the temperature. When your end goal is to produce a quality product, whether it’s a cake or a technical project, it is nearly impossible to spend less time to deliver the same level of quality deliverables, with more team members. Even worse, sometimes teams involve more team members at the middle or end of a project. In these cases, a project can end in complete chaos.

So we have to bake quality into each project in every single unit, step by step, including each user story, every different phase and in different sprints/iterations, especially at the beginning of the project.

Here is something I tried in different projects to help build up quality. I hope it will be helpful for you as you work on quality assurance in upcoming projects:

  • Make sure the requirement is testable
  • Introduce quality when designing
  • Test earlier as possible
  • Implement automation testing in proper time
  • Build & Deployment management
  • Risk management for 3rd party integrations and dependencies
  • Sprint/Iteration reviews with the client

I may talk more about different aspects of quality assurance in upcoming blog posts if you are interested in it. Start to try to bake your own quality “cake” from now on and you will find less pain at the end of your project. Good luck!

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