Who really does the testing ?

Today I bring you a post from Yoav Eilat - a coleague and friend that is focused on the business applications quality space. Thanks Yoav for contributing this post:

Hi,
Lately we’ve been talking to our customers’ IT organizations to figure out who actually does software testing.

Historically, we’ve always seen a broad spectrum of testers, from completely non-technical business users to expert QA. In a “typical” organization, if there is such a thing, it looks like most testing is done by business analysts or users, since the size of the QA staff (even with outsourcing help) is quite small compared to the size of the organization. Business users are better informed about ongoing changes to the application, especially for applications that implement corporate business processes like ERP/CRM. So business users are responsible for testing the processes they know, while the QA team focuses on testing infrastructure, test automation and quality processes. This means we need to make sure the tools that are used fit the skills of of the target audience.

I am interested to hear how close is this description to what you see in your company? How is the division of labor between business analysts/users and QA affected by the type of application under test, the testing methodology (automated vs. manual), and the industry you’re in?

Looking forward to your replies on this one.

Yoav.


 

Comments
(anon) | ‎05-05-2009 02:46 PM

My company has a dediciated QA department that focuses on implementation and infrastructure testing, while the application BA's perform functional tests.  The QA team insures environmental integrity while the BA team insures application integrity.  Both groups must know business logic, but the BA team has in depth knowledge of small subset of applications, while the QA team has broad but shallow knowledge of all applications.

So both groups use a wide range of tools, for functional and load testing, but on different depths and foci of attention.

(anon) | ‎05-23-2009 10:36 AM

Thanks Paul for your comment. It's consistent with what I'm hearing from other companies. It also sounds like you have a good channel of communication between the QA and BA teams.

(anon) | ‎08-18-2009 03:15 PM

In my organisation and the project I am involved in, The BA team are involved mainly in data testing and act as the end users. They are involved in gathering requirements from the clients/Exchanges and writing out a document called the Project Functional Specification. This document is what the Developers use for their coding guideline and QA/Tester use to draw out a test case.

The testers are involved mainly in functional and performance testing and writing documentations for installation and troubleshooting of software at a client’s site. Also involved in 3LS issues that arise from the clients.

(anon) | ‎08-18-2009 03:15 PM

In my organisation and the project I am involved in, The BA team are involved mainly in data testing and act as the end users. They are involved in gathering requirements from the clients/Exchanges and writing out a document called the Project Functional Specification. This document is what the Developers use for their coding guideline and QA/Tester use to draw out a test case.

The testers are involved mainly in functional and performance testing and writing documentations for installation and troubleshooting of software at a client’s site. Also involved in 3LS issues that arise from the clients.

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