Skip to main content

Quality Assurance

Showing Grit When Performing Manual QA

A man looks at a laptop and two monitors while coding.

Many times, in my career when performing QA, I’ve dealt with many times where I’ve felt uncertain about my efforts. Through my work at Perficient—and with the help of my team—I’ve learned over time how to persist and show grit in testing to be able to ensure the highest quality of work delivered throughout a project.

Here are some tips to help your breakthrough any blockers you may have when performing QA.

Trust the Process and Be Patient

There can be many factors working against you when performing QA: several test cases to resolve, a difficulty in getting to the right testing instructions or even understanding what to test and what the right result is.

From my experience, the best way to overcome these blockers is to have a firm process for manual QA, taking as much uncertainty and ambiguity out of your case as you can.

Here are ways to solidify your QA process:

  • Make sure your test cases, conditions and satisfaction requirements are clear, concise, and easy to understand.
  • Highlight the most relevant information to look for and focus on this specific point during your test to avoid any confusion.
  • Ensure before each test that your tools are configured to the right settings, and that you see the most accurate information.
  • Methodically go through each step of the process, whether you’re performing the test for the first time or thousandth time.
  • Always have a list of contacts to whom you can direct any questions about the case or process to, including developers, PMs, or any other involved party.
  • Document any failures, concerns or access issues in a list or table format depending on each requirement.
  • Frequently review the overall requirements and account for both present and hidden factors in your testing.
  • For every test failure, work with your developer to understand the failure and resolve it.

Once you’ve solidified your process, you can be certain that you’re performing each QA with a standard that eliminates any uncertainty with your testing.

However, even with the best process, you may be stuck due to factors outside of your control, such as access issues, development work or even bugs within your work that prevent you from moving forward.

When this happens, remember these things:

  • It’s outside of your control. Things will happen, and you should always strive to remain calm and collected whenever you encounter an obstacle or blocker.
  • Try to remove as much of the human element as possible. With a firm process, you’ll be able to handle any blocker that comes your way. This should also apply to any emotions your personal investment you have in the project.
  • Be adaptable all the time. As things change and the project alters over time, you should be the same, making sure that you always strive to execute the process in the same way no matter what case or requirement you’re on.

With these principles in mind, you’ll be better equipped to handle anything that comes in the way of your QA work.

Balance Between the Details and Big Picture

When performing QA work, it’s always expected to focus on the small details. This is especially true when going through a set process or replicating a result through test conditions. However, it’s important to always understand the outcome of your results, and how the quality of what you’re seeing ties into the value of what the end user sees.

When working throughout a project, you should align your process with the needs of the project but allow yourself time to look at the entire system holistically to see if there are quality issues that can be proactively resolved or caught to streamline your QA process.

Here are some ways to accomplish this:

  • Develop an understanding of the ecosystem in which your project lies—this includes dependencies, patterns or external factors that could positively or negatively influence the outcome of your project.
  • Try to merge your case requirements within a table to get a bigger picture of how the entire process works—you can work with your developers and architects to understand each functionality within the project.
  • Inquire about the development process or codebase within the project to see if there are any areas or issues that may affect the quality of the final output or lead to issues with your testing.
  • When documenting the result, try and tie in your result within each requirement to see if there are opportunities of improvement or patterns that emerge within your project.

With these tips, you’ll be able to go above and beyond in providing the best quality possible throughout the lifecycle of your project. Happy testing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Waden Greaux

Waden Greaux is a Technical Consultant for Perficient, specializing in Adobe Analytics and Adobe Launch. He is certified as an Adobe Analytics Developer Expert.

More from this Author

Follow Us