Quality Assurance Activities

Questions in the QA activities section of the process assessment questionnaire explore the emphasis of an organization on documentation, reviews, and other QA functions. Examine the grade and place it in the context of the grade ranges (listed in the previous section). If one or more of the subsection grades are significantly different from the overall section grade, further investigation into that area is warranted.


■ Grades E and D — Software quality and the activities needed to ensure it are not a primary focus within the software development organization. Documentation is probably weak, because there are no standard formats to guide developers. Effective reviews are not being conducted and the results of reviews are not applied to improve the process. Software quality assurance is not a formally defined activity.

o Action: The organization should develop a plan to improve documentation, reviews, and software quality assurance. Beginning with documents and reviews, the first action is to pick one or two documents and develop a standard format (being brief is best) and then develop a set of review guidelines for them. Over time, the actions can be broadened until most important documents are defined, are being produced, and are being reviewed.

■ Grade C — The organizational approach to predictable documentation, effective reviews, and basic quality assurance activities is coming together.

o Action: The organization should review responses to each of the subsections to determine which areas need the most improvement. Quality assurance functions are likely to need further improvement; if so, focus on establishing mechanisms for ensuring compliance with documentation and process standards. The organization might also broaden its review approach, if this can be done cost-effectively. At the same time, computer-aided software engineering tools should be employed to create effective documentation in a more productive manner.

■ Grade B — The organization is at the state of practice in the QA area. However, it may not be using quantitative data to analyze the software engineering process.

o Action: One idea to consider is a fledgling program in statistical QA for software. By first collecting data on defects uncovered through other QA activities, the organization can work to improve methods to reduce defects. It can then acquire tools that will enable the organization to build quality software more effectively.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

Get My Free Ebook

Post a comment