Using Software Testing and Quality Assurance to Improve Speed-to-Market

How could reframing software testing and quality assurance be such a game-changer? When it comes to building a new product, speed-to-market is absolutely crucial. It is the same for all companies, no matter what industry they’re in or what market they’re targeting. Everyone wants to get their product into their customers hands as soon as possible. 

But for scaling companies, speed-to-market takes on a whole other level of importance. Many will have just received investment and will be under pressure to prove their worth to investors. They need to fulfill their potential and they need to do it fast. 

In these cases, getting their product to market before their competitors can provide a significant and lasting competitive advantage. It’s no exaggeration to say that speed-to-market can make or break a business. 

We’ve spoken before about how one of the key factors influencing speed-to-market is the ability to scale resources quickly and effectively. It’s one of the key benefits of working with an outsourced development partner and hiring a dedicated software development team

When there is no time to lose, the time it takes to build a team in-house could be what separates a market leader from an also-ran.

A Micro Change That Makes a Macro Difference

In the race to get a product to market first, companies look for the adjustments that can  propel them to the front of the race. There are big, macro changes that can yield substantial gains such as working with an outsourced software development partner. There are micro changes that lead to incremental improvements over time. And, every now and again, there are micro changes that make a macro difference

One such change comes with software testing and quality assurance (QA) and the decision to put QA at the heart of the software development process. 

By incorporating software testing and quality assurance throughout, there are fewer bugs and fewer surprises down the line. The entire development process runs smoother, there are less delays and speed-to-market is significantly enhanced. Many companies think they can cut corners by leaving QA until last. But this is counter-intuitive and can often lead to major delays and revisions.

Why it Makes Sense to Put QA at the Heart of the Software Development Process

Where the confusion arises with QA, is that software testing and quality assurance is often looked at as something that impedes progress, when really the opposite is true. 

Speed-to-market is not just about getting your product to market as fast as you can. It’s about getting the safest, most efficient and effective version of your product to the market before your competitors.  

Incorporating QA at an early stage of the software lifecycle can increase speed-to-market by creating a smoother, more cohesive development process. It does this in a number of ways:

1. By catching bugs early, avoiding future reworks and delays. During the software development process, your dev team is creating code on a daily basis. All developers will agree that it’s easier and faster to make changes while the code is still open. This is why it makes sense to test continuously and provide feedback on an ongoing basis. That way developers can make changes quickly while reducing the likelihood of having to re-open their code base weeks or even months later. 

Without QA, some bugs or defects may not be caught until an advanced stage of production or even after the software has been released. When this happens it can often lead to costly and time-consuming rework. 

2. By encouraging better communication and collaboration between testing and development teams. By involving the QA team earlier in the development progress, you create a better connection between development and testing teams.

This allows for faster identification of potential issues and rapid resolution of problems. This reduces friction and separation and ensures that your technical team works together as a single unit. 

3. By giving the end user a more prominent place in the development. By incorporating user testing early on, QA can ensure that products or features meet user requirements and expectations. This prevents a common scenario faced by development teams where so much emphasis is placed on improving the product that they forget the most important thing – solving the customer’s needs.

When the user isn’t considered throughout, it can often lead to retroactive changes being needed at the end of the project. Sometimes a lack of user testing forces development teams to have to pivot, which leads to further delays.

Software testing and quality assurance

Putting Software Testing and Quality Assurance at the Heart of Your Dev Process

At Keeper we always recommend that QA engineers be included in the development process as early as possible. When a QA engineer gets involved early in the process, there are fewer bugs and unforeseen delays. We firmly believe that software testing and quality assurance shouldn’t just follow development. It should be at the heart of it. 

If you’d like to learn more about our software testing and quality assurance expertise, check out this page

Image credit – Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash,  Annie Spratt on Unsplash , Devon Janse van Rensburg on Unsplash, ThisisEngineering RAEng on UnsplashChristina @ on Unsplash