Historically, quality assurance (QA) has been implemented towards the end of the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). When the development and other stages run long, quality assurance gets shortened. Still, the quality assurance team is expected to find all the bugs, meet deadlines, and ensure absolute quality. Generally, the quality assurance team gets blamed when things do not go smoothly in a timely manner. Browser testing plays a vital role in the quality assurance process.
In contemporary development methodologies, it is common for QA professionals to face unjust scrutiny and criticism for the bugs they uncover and the consequent delays caused by their reports. This understandably leaves various QA professionals feeling misunderstood, undervalued and discouraged. In the organization, there seems to be a lack of understanding among decision-makers regarding the roles, responsibilities, and significance of the QA department.
Furthermore, the “communication gap” might be another reason for the trouble. Communication is vital for every successful business, whether it is conveying ideas, formulating strategies, offering feedback, or managing projects. The QA team plays a pivotal role in effective communication within the project. The team members must possess strong abilities to receive and communicate essential information.
Furthermore, when it comes to communication, QA professionals may face many challenges. In order for QA professionals to successfully convey their thoughts and opinions, they must develop strong communication skills. Effective communication authorizes their words to be listened to attentively, their ideas to be respected, and their feedback to be given due consideration.
Besides, as everyone knows, the Developer-QA professional relationship is always described as Tom and Jerry. But it does not have to be that way. This blog will discuss the importance of effectively communicating as a QA professional and provide practical tips on how to do so with confidence and professionalism. The blog will also delve into the role of automation testing in the cloud for QA professionals.
Table of Contents
What is Effective Communication for QA Professionals?
Effective communication for QA professionals is the ability to speak and write in simple words, professionally and effectively, while presenting information to executives and stakeholders. This entangles knowing the language of the groups involved in developing a product, such as Developers, Architects, Engineers, and Management. It helps QA professionals guarantee that the message is understood and data is interpreted accurately.
Effective communication plays a paramount role in establishing strong relationships with stakeholders, ultimately fostering collaborative and productive teamwork. Facilitating a productive working relationship is of utmost importance for QA professionals in order to effectively manage and minimize project risks.
How Can You Effectively Communicate Your Value And Impact As A QA Professional?
In the software development cycle, every team plays a pivotal role. The software development team concentrates on delivering code. The QA team concentrates on product quality. With each team strategically prioritizing a specific area of focus, the successful execution of our go-to-market strategy is assured. Correct?
Not entirely. Despite a smooth and problem-free product launch, the level of camaraderie among teams may be lacking at best. In fact, a lot of organizations describe the relationship between QA professionals and developers as a rivalry.
Here the question arises why?
Both teams share the same goal: to provide the best software product to their consumers.
In this situation, effective communication plays a vital role. As a QA professional, effective communication with stakeholders, developers, and clients is crucial to work effectively, build strong relationships, and guarantee that software products are developed and tested to fulfill the desired quality standards.
Remember it is a journey, and it is essential to take a few steps daily. Here are some tips that can help you to effectively communicate your value and impact as a QA professional:
Become a Confident Orator
There are unlimited opportunities for a QA professional to participate in an engaging discussion or conversion. Meetings like review sessions and defect triage take place pretty much every day. Acing them confidently has numerous benefits. But for that, you need to believe in yourself first. Have faith in your input and ideas. Do not be hesitant.
While speaking, making eye contact with others present in the meeting plays a crucial role. It raises the likelihood of receiving an affirmative response. Additionally, it is always advised to choose your words wisely. To become a good and confident orator, it is advised to work on your pronunciation. If you are not sure about the pronunciation of certain words, choose another parallel word. It is better than pronouncing it wrong. Watch your pace. Slow down if required. Speak loud and clear.
Your body language also plays a vital role. Relaxed arms at the sides indicate that you are friendly and open to having a discussion. On the other hand, hunched shoulders and crossed arms suggest that you are reserved and unwilling to have a conversation. Appropriate and positive posture can make tough and intricate conversations flow effortlessly.
Become a Good Listener
Communication is always a two-way process. Listening is as important as speaking. The QA professionals must practice listening and not just hear stuff.
The QA professional is a pivotal participant in the software product requirements discussion meeting. The advantages of being a good listener are twofold. Developing a comprehensive understanding of the system will enhance your capabilities and contribute to a positive impression on your manager. Actively engaging in your role will not only earn you points with your manager but also establish a favorable professional reputation.
Here are some tips to become a good listener:
- Seek confirmation when in doubt
- Pay attention and ask queries
- Smile, nod, and keep a positive posture
- Make eye contact with the speaker
- Contribute when you can
- Provide positive feedback
Ensure both Teams Receive Precise Requirements and Goals
Strong and precise specifications and requirements can assist in developing communication between software development and QA professionals. Goals and requirements, when documented in a way that isn’t understandable to testers or developers, lead to confusion, chaos, and isolation. When drafting goals and requirements, it is a good idea to consider the inputs from both teams. This will help both teams to know their responsibilities throughout the project and comprehend what is expected across sprints.
Pair with Programmers
The best way for the QA professionals to understand the programmers is through experience. A pair program authorizes developers to explain the code step by step to the QA professionals before they together execute testing on the case. Communication between QA professionals and the software development team is always sharpened through pair programming.
This is because it furnishes both teams with an opportunity to walk through their strategy and talk through an issue. Besides, it is also important to note that when developers and QA professionals work together to fix software issues, they cultivate a deeper appreciation for the importance and value of each other’s roles.
Build Empathy Across Teams
Before commenting on anything, think from that person’s perspective. Think by stepping into someone else’s shoes. This will help you to relate to the thoughts and emotions of the other person. Understanding the other person’s thought process will help in guiding your actions.
In stressful situations, it is tough to think from someone else’s point of view. The absence of this understanding hinders the communication between QA professionals and software development. It is advised that instead of playing the blame games or pointing fingers, imagine the situation from the perspective of the other team.
Provide Consistent and Constructive Feedback
Constructive feedback is generally more effective in yielding positive responses from individuals. This is because destructive feedback tends to have a counterproductive impact and is not conducive to facilitating growth or improvement. It is not possible for the software development team to fix the issue if the feedback received from the QA team is subjective, unclear, judgmental, and accusatory.
Providing appropriate feedback in a polite manner can accelerate healthy communication between software development and QA professionals. Before giving feedback to the software development team, ensure that it fulfills all productive criteria. Valuable feedback is:
- Based only on observation
- Intended to boost actionable next steps
To work together, it is essential for both teams to understand and appreciate each other’s work. Cross-training is not intended for QA professionals and developers to take over the responsibilities of each other. It helps both teams gain keen insight into what goes into the QA testing and software development process.
Developers can demonstrate the code base to QA testers and explain their development process, including how new code is constructed and how their team pinpoints and resolves code defects. QA testers can demonstrate to developers the test cases and explain the reason that goes into their software testing techniques.
A tester with a thorough understanding of the code base can proactively identify potential issues and code breakage, leading to the development of more robust test cases. A developer with a thorough understanding of the testing suite can refine code structure so that it is created to pass testing.
Maximizing Your Value as a QA Professional: Unleashing the Power of Automation Testing in the Cloud
In today’s rapidly evolving technological landscape, effective communication of your value and impact as a QA professional is vital for career growth and success. Harnessing the power of automation testing in the cloud is a highly effective method for showcasing your skills and contributions. Automation testing not only enhances the efficiency and accuracy of QA processes but also enables faster delivery of high-quality software.
By effectively utilizing cloud-based automation testing tools and platforms, you can demonstrate your ability to streamline testing processes, increase test coverage, and diminish time-to-market, therefore proving your value as a QA professional. Besides, automation testing in the cloud authorizes scalability and flexibility, as it eliminates the need for physical infrastructure and allows for on-demand access to testing resources. This not only saves valuable time and resources but also showcases your ability to adapt to changing project requirements and deliver results efficiently.
By proficiently demonstrating your expertise in the utilization of cloud-based automation testing, you have the opportunity to showcase your ability to enhance testing endeavors, elevate product quality, and contribute significantly to the overall success of the organization. Additionally, sharing specific examples of how automation testing in the cloud has resulted in cost savings, improved software performance, or accelerated time-to-market will further enhance your value proposition as a QA professional.
With platforms like LambdaTest, you can effortlessly run automated tests on a diverse range of browsers and operating systems, all from the cloud.
LambdaTest is an AI-powered test orchestration and execution platform to run manual and automated tests at scale. The platform allows you to perform both real-time and automation testing across 3000+ environments and real mobile devices.
Communication is crucial to reinforce effectiveness. QA professionals should minimize the amount of time wasted in re-articulating earlier thoughts or clearing up misunderstandings. Having effective and clear communication is always appreciated. There is no one size fit for all. You need to make alterations in the tactics, but the principles are the same. Organize your thoughts, tailor your communication to the other team, and exercise empathy.
Besides, regularly updating and documenting your achievements can help you showcase your growth and progress over time. By following the above-stated practices, you can effectively communicate your value as a QA professional and highlight the significant role you play in guaranteeing quality and success in the tech industry.