Automate Your Quality Assurance
By Sam Miller
Quality assurance is a wide range of methods which provide businesses with expected results. It’s know that working with quality is one of the possible way to improve the product and as a result number of products sold. It’s a good idea to improve quality assurance with information technologies, getting tests results as an electronic document will enable improve the total efficiency of quality service.
The key idea about improving quality assurance with IT technologies is automation. You need to have attention of your employee only in some certain cases, where it’s actually needed to do a human check. The task is to automate other processes, which can be performed by computer.
Your tactic and strategy depends on your goals, size of your company, tests scale, but the most common approach for building testing system will include three steps. Researching the object of the test, suggesting and automating test affords, actual test performing and reverse analysis of performed tests. Let’s pay attention to every aspect of the test.
First, it’s important to research carefully the object of the tests. It can be some computer-related product, for instance software. Then it’s important to identify the functions which should be tested in order to evaluate the product performance. There are a different approaches to tests, some should just answer the question “If it works?”, others should answer the questions “How good does it work?”.
If you deal with some real-world object, then it’s obvious that you will need someone help to check the object. But it doesn’t mean that you will not be able to automate testing. First, it is easier to test if your tester will have a list of items that should be tested together with description, how to test information. Then some computer software installed on PocketPC can guide the man trough the testing process and suggest a way to put down his opinion of the certain item.
It is important that results of quality assurance tests should be represented as a report, as a single file which is easy to share with others. The most common format for this kind of files is the number of test case together with test description and the values which was obtained. If quality assurance manage have this file, then it would be easy for him to compare actual test results with some key report file.
Actually, here some easy to implement automation is possible. If you have two versions of the test document, one the key document and another the tests results document, then you will be able to pass these documents to some third-party compare utility to perform the comparison. The most popular compare tools suggest a way to automate this task with command line interface.
What to do after the actual tests were designed and performed? It is task to do a reverse analysis. Try to think about tests as a possible opportunity. Try to find some opportunity which will make your products more reliable. Quality tests should not just answer the question if it works or not, they should help you to create a better product.
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