The Modern QA
Should Quality Assurance in your company just be sitting next to the developer? Or should they be doing more?
Of course most QA does more than just sit by the developer and make the product together. If you or your QA isn’t doing this… they should be. Rapid iteration between QA and Devs can only better a product.
But now what? Your product is in the wild or ready to be released. Your team is ramping down from heavy release but ramping up on your first patch of bug fixes.
Is this the end? How do you make your product better? Some people at this point would say “SURVEY!”
but in reality it should be something like this(Click the Title Below):
I can tell you the best thing for a QA engineer to do is travel to the customers. Most project managers are rolling their eyes right now saying “Who is going to pay for that?!” but in reality the customers will in the long run.
I’ve gone to conferences and user group meets ups at least once a month, meeting with developers and customers of our product and I always leave learning something new about our product and how its used.
Traveling to conferences and users groups makes a world of a different. You get a first hand account of what their problems are face to face.
Internet interactions are much different then Face to Face.
Seeing someones face and what they really think of your product, is scary. But asking more questions from their reactions. They don’t have to be an enterprise customer. They just need to be a customer. A new user with a lower skill level will encounter more UX and Documentation issues while a veteran will tell you more specific bugs.
During these encounters someone will say “This bug is terrible. Why isn’t it fixed?” you need to tell them that its being worked on. If it isn’t being worked on, it should be curated in a bug list and be ready to be worked on for the future.
But most importantly, if you have the chance (sometimes you won’t) let them know that bug importance is relative. Something important to you, isn’t important to someone else. They could be saying “This bug is terrible and should be fixed before ANYTHING!”
So now you are home from traveling to all these conferences and user groups? Now what?
Compile all the information you got from people and send it out to your teammates. Get feedback and see what you can do to make these changes. Somethings people say just won’t be changed but a lot of the times its some UX, Doc or bug that can be fixed in a patch release.
I encourage you to travel and experience what I’m talking about. That QA will soon become part of a world wide community and others will be really happy to know someone is listening.