Managed QA Solution: How to de-risk your Software project and reduce your QA costs.

Let’s talk about how we can make your company’s QA operations simpler.

What is Managed QA?

Managed QA is a new paradigm in Software Development Life Cycle, where in an external company or team takes ownership of all QA Responsibilities for your project. The external team is responsible for all aspects of QA: coming up with Test Plans and Test Cases; executing test cases; building automation frameworks for the tests cases; setting up CI/CD System (Continuous Integration and Deployment) for build, integration and tests; and reporting bugs and issues observed.

The external “Managed QA” team is responsible for the overall quality of the project — which means it behaves similar to an internal QA team but with a slightly different reporting structure. A Managed QA Team usually directly reports to the Product Owner.

What is Managed QA?

Ownership is the key requirement of Managed QA. The Managed QA Team is directly responsible for the Quality of the Project — and anything that is needed to improve product Quality falls under the purview of the Managed QA team. In most scenarios, we see Managed QA Team being directly responsible for: Functional Test Plans and Test Cases, Performance Test Plan and Test Cases, Automation Frameworks, Continuous Integration Frameworks, Issue Tracking and Reporting, Test Framework bug fixes, Keeping the Build and Integration System up-and-running all the time, etc.

Why should I consider Managed QA Solution instead of hiring my own QA Team?

Managed QA Team is an efficient way to manage all Testing and QA needs for your team. Because the team has significant technical and domain expertise in doing Quality Assurance — they can efficiently take care of the Quality operations for the team.

For example, Managed QA Team can build a comprehensive Automation Suite as soon as the Sprint Requirements are known — thus reducing manual testing time and efficiently identifying bugs and defects. Managed QA Team is also a shared pool of resources — who may have specific skillsets to validate performance, security and UI/UX features of the project.

While having internal QA Team can be a great solution, Managed QA provides efficiency and expertise that might be lacking within the internal QA Team. Many companies go with a combination of Internal QA Team and a Managed QA Team for specific verticals — say automation and CI/CD, thus balancing the Product Quality risks.

How will they integrate within my Development team?

Managed QA Team is similar to Internal QA Team in terms of how it integrates within the organization hierarchy. They are stakeholders in the Sprint planning meetings and attend daily scrums. Many of them work on-site at client offices, but few may decide to work from their own offices. Either way — communications is the key requirement for a successful Managed QA project; and this usually means that Managed QA team is on client site at least couple of times a week.

One of the main concerns raised by developers is the last minute testing needs for critical fixes. This is addressed by the Managed QA team by effective communication and a strong Kanban based issue management process. We usually have our Managed QA Engineers be available on their cell phones if they are not working onsite, and this process has worked nicely in the past.

What are the advantages of Managed QA?

The main advantage of the Managed QA team is risk reduction. A Managed QA Team has expertise to assess product risk independently. The managed QA Team has also worked on similar or related products and can bring in experience from those projects.

Another advantage of Managed QA is cost savings. Since Managed QA uses test automation and continuous integration — they end up finishing the QA cycle more quickly than internal teams. Managed QA Teams are on-demand teams and can be T&M based — allowing for cost reduction as well.

The QA cycle in product development is usually skewed — It is not constant work throughout the cycle, but goes through its ebbs and flows. Managed QA takes advantages of these ebbs and flows and can reduce project costs.

How does managed QA compare against in-house QA?

Sure, in-house QA provides more flexibility; an on-staff team ready to jump on any issue at a moment’s notice is great to have. But Managed QA has significantly closed these communication gaps and compares favorably to in-house teams in terms of handling critical, last minute issues.

We created this infographic to explain the differences in hiring an in-house team vs a Managed QA team. The pricing is a assumed for a single project with up to 4 developers. We have mentioned flat pricing structure below, but have flexibility to bill this on T&M as well.

Managed QA Solution Comparison

What does Rhoynar’s Managed QA Solution provide?

Our Managed QA Solution provides all of the following:

Deliverables:

  • Continuously interworking with Product and Development teams to create, develop and curate a strong Test Process.
  • Comprehensive Test Plan and Test Cases covering all functional, performance, UI/UX and Security scenarios.
  • Automation Framework Development for all Test Scenarios.
  • Continuous Integration Development.
  • Work with team to execute the test scenarios every Sprint and report bugs and defects. Follow up on bugs and defects to get them resolved and retested.
  • A requirement traceability matrix to test each requirement; reports specific to each requirement.
  • Any maintenance and upkeeps required for the automation framework or CI framework.

Team:

  • Dedicated Resources: Our managed QA Solution starts with one or more full-time QA engineers dedicated to the project. They are available on moment’s notice to jump on any QA needs for the project. These are usually local, US-based engineers who have extensive experience in Manual QA, Automation QA and Continuous Integration Framework development.
  • Shared Resources: Our Managed QA solution also comes with several shared team members who will provide complementary expertise to the project. They include Software Automation Architects, Project Managers, DevOps Engineers, Performance Test Engineers and Security Test Engineers.

Process:

We follow Agile-Scrum process for our Managed QA Team. Our Managed QA Team will integrate into your Agile product development cycle and be involved in Daily Scrums, Sprint Planning Meetings, Sprint Demos, and Sprint Retrospective meetings.

How much will it cost?

Small projects requiring 1 QA resource start from around $5000 a month along with an annual retainer. For medium and large size projects, we can provide either a fixed price quote or a T&M based quote. We also provide flexible solutions that can scale with your project needs. Get in touch with us at www.rhoynar.com/contact and we can get you a quote within 2 days.

What is the process?

The process starts with a simple call — and we can talk about the project and come up with a proposal that can suit your needs. Don’t worry, this is a no-obligation free call and we won’t pressure you into something that you don’t need. We want to make sure that you will find the right partner to help you with your project. If we are not that right partner, we will at least guide you in the correct direction.

Are you guys reliable?

Absolutely! We stand behind our work and take ownership of our responsibilities. 85% of our clients come hire us for a second project or more. That speaks to our ability to keep our clients happy with a solution that is customized for their needs.

What are the next steps?

Visit us at www.rhoynar.com or contact me directly at https://linkedin.com/in/hmurari to get started.