Software quality assurance

Software quality assurance

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Updated on Oct 21, 2022 18:37 IST

Software quality assurance is the process of ensuring that software meets all requirements and expectations. This article covers Software quality assurance activities and Software quality assurance techniques.

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Software quality assurance (SQA) is a process that ensures that software meets the quality standards set by the company or client. It involves testing the software to identify bugs and errors and then fixing them. SQA is an essential part of the software development process, as it helps ensure that the final product is high quality and fit for purpose. There are many different aspects to SQA, and it can be a complex and detailed process. This blog post will give an overview of Software quality assurance. 

Table of contents

Software quality assurance

Software quality assurance is the process of ensuring that software meets all requirements and expectations. It includes both static and dynamic testing methods. Static testing involves the examination of code without running it, while dynamic testing involves executing the code.

Both static and dynamic testing is important to ensure software quality. Static testing can identify problems early on before the code is even executed. This can save time and resources in the long run. Dynamic testing is important for finding problems that may not be apparent from examining the code itself.

There are a variety of software quality assurance tools and techniques available. Some common ones include code review, unit testing, integration testing, and regression testing.

Code review is a static testing technique that inspects code for errors or potential problems. It can be done manually or using automated tools. Unit testing is dynamic testing that tests individual units of code (such as functions or modules) independently from other units. Integration testing ensures that different units of code work together correctly. Regression testing checks for previously fixed bugs to ensure they haven’t reappeared after new code changes have been made.

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Why software quality assurance?

The role of software quality assurance in the software development life cycle is to prevent critical errors or defects from entering the final version of the software. This is done to ensure all errors or defects are caught and corrected before the software is released to the public. The role of software quality assurance in the development cycle differs from other stages in the development process because it occurs after all coding is complete. After all, coding is complete. Developers will better understand what changes will be necessary for their code to meet project standards. In addition, this development stage is when developers begin implementing their ideas into the project. 

Software quality assurance (SQA) Techniques

1. Audits

Audits involve inspecting work products and related information to determine whether they follow standard processes.

2. Review

A meeting where a software product is reviewed by internal and external stakeholders and comments and approvals are collected.

3. Simulation

A simulation is a tool that models real-life situations to virtually study the behavior of the system under study.

4. Functional Testing

A QA technique checks what the system is doing without considering how the system works. This type of black box testing is primarily focused on testing system specifications or functionality. 

5. Code inspection

This is the most formal type of review, running static tests to find bugs and prevent them from escalating at a later stage. It is performed by trained mediators/peers and is based on rules, checklists, 

6. Static Analysis

Software analysis is performed by automated tools without actually running the program. This technique is commonly used for medical, nuclear, and aerospace software quality assurance. Software metrics and reverse engineering are common forms of static analysis. 

7. Walkthroughs

Software or code walkthroughs guide developers to explore a product, ask questions, suggest alternatives, and comment on possible bugs, standards violations, or other issues by guiding members of the development team. A type of peer review that you provide.

8. Six Sigma

Six Sigma is a quality assurance approach aimed at near-perfect products or services. It is widely used in many fields, including software. The main goal of Six Sigma is to improve the process so that the software produced is 99.76% error-free.

Software quality assurance (SQA) Activities

1. Create SQA Management Plan

The most important task is to develop a suitable plan for how to perform SQA on the project. Similar to the SQA approach, the engineering activities performed also include ensuring the team has the right mix of talent.

2. Checkpoint settings

The SQA team sets various checkpoints to assess the quality of project activities at each checkpoint/project phase. This ensures regular quality control and on-schedule work.

3. Apply software engineering practices

By applying multiple software engineering practices, software designers can achieve high-quality specifications. Designers can use techniques such as interviews and her FAST (Functional Analysis System Technique) to gather information.

Then, based on the information gathered, the software designer uses her WBS (Work Breakdown Structure), SLOC (Source Line of Codes), FP Estimation (Functional Point), and other techniques to estimate the project.

4. Conduct a formal technical review

During this process, a meeting is held with the technical staff to discuss the software’s actual quality requirements and the prototype’s design quality. This activity helps detect errors early in the SDLC and reduces post-processing efforts at later stages. 

5. Have a multi-testing strategy

 A multi-testing strategy means that we should not rely on a single testing approach and should perform multiple tests to thoroughly test all aspects of our software product and improve its quality. 

6. Enhanced process compliance

This activity advocates the need for process fidelity during the software development process. The development process should also follow defined procedures.

Conclusion

Developing software is a challenging process that requires knowledge, skills, and time. However, the development of software can be expedited by ensuring the quality of the process. Software quality assurance is a testing method used to improve the quality of a software product before it goes live. Software quality assurance is a collaborative effort between developers and testers to identify issues with the software and make necessary changes before releasing it to the public.

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