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Outsourcing Regression Testing to Experts – A way to improve your software’s quality

  • 17/08/2011
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  • Posted by EuroSTAR

In this agile world, where the clients’ requirements changes almost every day, it becomes extremely important to keep an eye on the quality of the application software being developed. I personally have seen client’s coming and asking for changes in the application even after it has gone through the UAT. Having said that, today I would like to express my opinion on what I think is regression testing and why is it so important to outsource it to testing experts?

I would like to start with the basic definition for those, who don’t have any idea about regression testing. Regression testing is just another type of software testing, which is used to “Retest” an existing application to look for new errors, or bugs, in existing functionality after changes have been made by a developer. These bugs can be a result of functionality enhancement or applying new patches to existing software. There are 2 main objectives of performing a regression testing. First and foremost, Retest changed components and secondly, Check the affected parts in the application.

Major regression testing problems:

•    How to use a systematic method or tool to identify changed software parts?
•    How to reduce the re-test suites?
•    How to select the test cases in a test suite?
•    How to use a systematic method or tool to identify software change impacts?
•    How to use a systematic method or tool to identify affected software test cases?
•    How to minimize re-testing efforts, and achieve the adequate testing coverage?

Although many organizations now pay more attention to the quality process and testing efficiencies for new applications or projects, testing processes for patches, minor releases, and upgrades are generally poor. This is typically because new implementations involve larger staffs and budgets with enough time and resources. It requires more resources to check that any software changes made in one part of application has caused existing functionality to break. Changes to a software component could impact dependent components. All this affects the quality and reliability of the system. Since regression testing aims to verify all this, it is very important.

Outsourcing Testing Helps You Save Money & Time:

Regression testing needs are reliant on the frequency of new software release cycles and the window of time allowed between coding, test and production releases. Some key things that need to be considered are:

•    How much manpower is required to test?
•    How long is the test window?
•    Are there internal resources available to achieve adequate testing?
•    Are there space or infrastructure constraints?

Today, when controlling IT infrastructure cost is itself a challenge, most of the growing companies yet have space constraints. In order to set up a test team dedicated to a project, needs a large amount of space and equipments which is required for very short duration of time depending on the project. Once the project is complete, both space and resources need to be re-allocated. Outsourcing to a testing vendor provides relief from this ongoing cost.

A testing vendor also has investment in a global infrastructure which can have near-shore or offshore workers perform certain types of work when appropriate. An outsource test vendor, can provide it’s clients with an on-demand test process which saves time, reduces cost, and helps achieve better software quality.

Because a test vendor executes the day-to-day management tasks of the team, a company is free to utilize their employees to focus on higher-level tasks requiring more creativity and innovation. They can then leverage this time to manage multiple QA projects while simultaneously performing other roles which may be unrelated to QA management.

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