Not long ago, I found an interesting question on Quora: “Why should you hire a QA engineer if you can get coders to do all the work with quality control of your web application?” The idea behind the post was that the responsibilities of QA managers can be shared among others, thus saving money (we’re not talking about time right now), at least some of them.
First of all, there is a Cardinal rule in software development: never have the people who wrote the code, test it. Anyone who has been around software development for any length of time will understand the importance and the truth behind this maxim.
“Cardinal rule in software development: never have the people who wrote the code, test it”
But for the purposes of those who are relatively new to software development, this blog post examines the issue in detail.
The Developer’s Side of the Story
Let’s have a closer look at what developers are responsible for. What they do is build your application from the ground up according to your specific wants and needs. Not, much? Wrong. While it might sound simple, it actually takes whole lot of time to learn, master, and a lot of brains to accomplish. The catch is that those guys often do not speak a common language with business people. So you’ll undoubtedly need some sort of intermediary, someone who will describe your business goals and issues and transform those into specific engineering tasks.
The second catch is that developers, like many people working on complex tasks can be possessive and sensitive about the end product, sometimes treating code as ‘their baby’. That automatically makes them non-objective when it comes to testing that code.
While they may treat their code as a work of art, and take pride in how they have produced it, it can also blind them to some minor faults. This can be true with a single developer, or with a team where each developer may be responsible for different functionality.
From QA’s Perspective
Given that making developers responsible for QA is a losing approach, what do you get from hiring a QA engineer?
Basically, QA engineers monitor every phase of the software development process to ensure design quality, making sure that the software adheres to the standards set by the development company and the client. To put it differently, they help ensure that the final product does what it is supposed to.
Software QA Engineers versus Software Testers
Sometimes software QA engineers are confused with software testers. Software testers test parts of the software at different stages of development, whereas a software QA engineer oversees the entire development process, which includes software testing, from start to finish, but has a wider look at the development process, as well as keeps track of the delivery of your application.
Keep in mind that much of the success of your business will depend on the quality and performance of your application, as well as the product’s ability to hit the market on time. All of these are aided by software QA staff.
If you have found a trusted partner and you are happy with that partner, consider relying on their recommendations around team makeup. Respectable companies with good track records won’t put their reputation at stake just to sell you services you don’t really need. They take responsibility for the success of your business, and deliverability of the product. In other words, hire the right people for the right job and you should be fine.
Take a look at the array of services we provide and find out how our extensive expertise can help you launch a successfull project.