Ananta Wali, QA manager at Codal, discusses her role and the importance of rigorous software quality testing
Here at Codal, we understand what separates great digital products from mediocre offerings — and we pride ourselves on being able to provide guidance and counsel to businesses so that their vision is fully realized. A big part of this is our commitment to superior quality assurance (QA) testing.
QA testing aims to deliver high-quality digital products by putting them through their paces to ensure they adhere to rigorous standards and procedures. It also helps confirm that the products are safe, reliable, and user-friendly
As the leader of Codal’s QA testing team, Ananta Wali is responsible for managing Codal’s QA efforts across a wide range of products and clients. She oversees a team that delivers a multilayered approach to QA that brings together the best of automated and manual testing.
In this blog post, we’ll examine Wali’s role in running Codal’s QA team in detail, as well as take a closer look at Codal’s QA process.
What is the QA testing process like at Codal?
Unlike other web design and development agencies, the QA team at Codal gets involved in every project during its early stages. As Wali says, this allows the team to fully understand each project’s unique needs and challenges.
“In the very start of a project, which is as soon as during Discovery, we involve both the QA and the development teams. We take a test-driven development (TDD) approach where the QA team starts writing test cases based on the actions and criteria of the user stories that the project or product manager has detailed out,” says Wali. “Based on that, they start writing scenario-based test cases.”
“Those scenario-based test cases are beneficial for the QA team, but they’re also hugely beneficial for the development team, as they help them understand the entry and exit criteria they need to account for when diving into hardcore development.”
Wali says the QA team’s strategies and tactics are designed to complement Codal’s Agile development practices. The QA team works in conjunction with Codal’s developers to ensure bugs are addressed quickly, and a significant backlog does not accrue.
“It’s a continuous-delivery kind of approach where we don’t wait for, let’s say, 7–8 features to be done and sent to QA. It’s part of the Agile model that we follow. As the development team starts developing, the QA team starts writing test cases,” Wali says.
Wali credits Codal’s extensive QA onboarding process for getting new team members up to speed quickly and effectively.
“We have Codal QA standard documentation on Confluence. Whenever anybody on the QA side is brought into Codal, that person has to go through that onboarding document and complete a list of training exercises,” explains Wali.
“That way, we can be sure that they adhere to the best practices and standards we strive to maintain company-wide. We also do monthly QA meetings to keep the team up to speed with the latest industry best practices and technologies.”
What challenges does the QA team face when working on a project?
Often, Wali encounters clients that do not have a firm understanding of the QA process. She says that a key part of her role is educating clients on the benefits of QA and how it can improve the long-term health of a digital product.
“We do struggle sometimes with clients not actually understanding how important QA is. I think how we pitch it to them is that, at the end of the day, quality is what matters most. There’s no development cycle that escapes without bugs. No matter how much we trust our developers, there are always multiple scenarios to test, especially in complicated applications,” says Wali.
“Without QA, it’s impossible to put in the necessary quality checks to make sure the client is getting what they signed up for.”
How important is automation to the QA process?
Automated QA testing tools help teams easily run tests on software and get accurate and timely reports. Automation helps reduce the manual labor typically involved in QA testing, and is a crucial component of continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD).
“I think it’s very important in today’s fast-paced development delivery environment. We have clients that come to us saying, ‘We want a working app by the end of January.’ And we are already in December. In a situation like that, there’s a high chance that the quality standards will be compromised because the backlog of features keeps increasing and it’s very difficult to keep track of everything that was worked on in the past 1–2 months,” says Wali. “The amount of work that the QA team must test increases with every sprint, and the regression load increases too. We have in-house automation teams that work in an N-1 sprint fashion. For example, if we are in the current sprint, whatever is done in the previous sprint, they start automating that. This reduces the manual QA teams’ efforts and the time they have to spend on doing sanity tests, regressions tests, and more. Overall, this actually benefits the quality of the product that we are delivering to the client.”
What excites you most about the QA at Codal?
Wali finds the diversity in projects and clients that Codal engages with to be particularly interesting. The wide variety of solutions her team has a hand in keeps things fresh and engaging.
“No project is the same. We have eCommerce projects, we have asset management projects, we have legal projects, we have agricultural projects. So I think strategizing a solution that works best for the product and getting more into research sessions with the client — that really excites me. Also, every project needs different testing types to support, be it manual, automation, load testing, etc. So finding the right fit is very important and exciting as well,” explains Wali.
“When we do our weekly showcase meetings where we show the clients the QA signoff reports, the automation reports — and the confidence that they have in the product as a result — I think that’s the kind of validation that we are looking for. I think that drives us to do better.”
Our experienced QA team can help ensure your digital product is set for long-term success. Connect with Codal to learn more about our best-in-class QA services.