Friday, March 20, 2020

The Insight and Impact of Software Quality

The focus of software quality improvement should be on understanding and satisfying customers and achieving the quality goal of the business.

With information permeation and continuous disruptions often led by technology, IT needs to become strategic focused and increase the top-line business profitability for the company.

Fundamentally, IT is a scientific and system engineering organization, which is shifting from monolithic technology focus to mosaic information-driven. Not all IT departments are staffed properly to be software development houses yet they are often required to do custom software development and deliver high-quality products and services to delight customers.

Knowing what the quality of the product to be delivered will be, and take actions if that quality will be insufficient early at lower costs: Quality is defined as being suitable for the intended purpose and satisfying customer expectations. It is impossible to deliver an acceptable application to a business without a clear understanding of what is to be delivered. From the products/projects management perspective, quality is a function of scope, budget, and resources. Make sure the software management meets the business requirement, planning, schedule, cost, and performance standards.

With rapid changes and fierce competition, it is increasingly more challenging for IT to deliver to business what it wants when it wants. Also, keep clarifying the business goals such as improving customer satisfaction or optimizing business processes, Many times, lack of user adoption is one of the issues to fail new software apps, an intuitive user interface can make the high-quality software even more qualified. Further, analyzing defects that give you information on where to improve your process, and prevent similar defects in the future. Reliability is one of the important characteristics of software quality with the perspective on consistently delivering the expected business results.

Enforce across functional communication and collaboration: Software development is often cross-functional teamwork. It’s important to improve collaboration between designers and testers, by having them discuss defects and the measures that they can take to improve quality. Cross-functional teams should work transparently with the client to see what can be delivered in the given timeline with the best quality.

Bugs aren't usually caused by trying to get the release out too quickly; they are more often caused by poor planning and allowing the scope to creep, trying to do too much without thinking about the consequences of each change or addition. The faster release shouldn't compromise customer satisfaction; while high quality also doesn't mean "perfect" or bug-free code. The goal is to meet customer needs, shorten software development cycles for adapting to changes, and achieve business results timely.

Help stakeholders balance quality and functionality: The goal of any IT-led business initiatives is to solve business problems and often described in terms of measures, such measure selection should be based on the nature of the project and the purpose of the business initiative with faster delivery. Help stakeholders balance quality and functionality and help them decide when to invest in testing, in reviews, and in defect prevention. Known bugs can be fixed, ignored or tolerated; and understanding a reasonable set of choices is based on the circumstances and impact of the defect.

Serious bugs in APIs or other more sophisticated processing or interactions that meet the business requirements can only arise due to incorrect requirements (specification) or the failure of the software team to properly implement requirements that have been identified as correct. In any case, the level of testing and the rigor of its execution is an engineering consideration that has to be appropriate to the product involved.

Provide inputs from an architecture perspective, such as complexity management, reusability: The business value of application reuse is easiest to communicate after educating the business on the different stages of technical maturity, the advantages and costs of each stage. The architecture provides a useful platform and systematic perspective to improve reusability and manage performance. Re-usability which is about creating simple building blocks that can be applied over and over to minimize design cost and maximize value over the software life cycle will bring in required simplicity at an enterprise level and expedite business speed.

Re-usability and simplicity complement each other to a certain level of granularity within the organization. Reuse or not is situational, but through the pros and cons of application reuse analytics, cost optimization can be achieved without sacrificing quality. While looking to reuse you obviously have to ensure that you don't increase your collateral in old technologies or business processes that you want to get rid of. Keep strengthening in expressing and evaluating ideas of quantified qualities and costs as well as improving engineering methodologies and disciplines to improve software management maturity.

Nowadays, quality is everyone’s business. The high-quality enterprise consists of high-quality people, high-quality products/services, and high-quality business capabilities/processes, etc. Software management is both art and science. The focus of software quality improvement should be on understanding and satisfying customers and achieving the quality goal of the business.


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