sonik group: ++Quality Assurance

By: Sonikgroup  09-12-2011
Keywords: Project Management, Change Management, Configuration Management


     
   
  overview      
  Quality Assurance (QA) is critical to the success of any process or project. Planning, standards and best practices are all common themes of a sound QA process.Quality Assurance services include: » QA Planning & Management
» Project Audit
» Software Development Audit
QA Planning & Management
The Sonik model takes a holistic approach to Quality Assurance (QA) based on the belief that quality should be built into the process from project conception and tracked to completion» Identify Expectations, Issues and Roles
» Define Quality Metrics
» Communication Plan and Training
» Execute Work Plan
» Quality Review and Feedback
» Final Project ReviewProject QA requires tracking the project to document learnings into a knowledge repository. These learnings may be related to process, organization, or technology. This process improvement step is based on continuous improvement and learning organization concepts. Project Audit
Project audits are used to determine if best practices - as determined by recognized industry standards such as the Project Management Institute's PMBOK® -- are being adhered to either within a specific project or on the overall program level. Project audits normally cover the following key areas:» quality management
» risk mitigation planning
» configuration management
» change control
» contract management
» procurement management Change Management
Typically, the audit process is conducted throughout a project lifecycle; sometimes, however, ad-hoc or one-time audits become necessary in cases deemed imperative by client management or project steering committees. Project audits begin with the project charter, ensuring all issues regarding scope, participation, stakeholders and general project management controls are both in place and being followed. Audits also cover change control procedures/practices, and ensures third-party contract and procurement management is conducted on a fair, consistent basis. Version control and risk mitigation procedures are also validated using the Project Audit service.Software Development Audit
The Sonik approach is partly founded on the Software Engineering Institute's Capability Maturity Model® (referred to as SW-CMM®). This approach allows for an objective software development audit to be conducted, usually in cases such as:» software process improvement
» software process assessment
» software process capability The Sonik Software Development Audit is used primarily in situations where an evaluation of a specific development process is required. In some cases, client management has identified that a need for an objective audit is required to reduce cycle times, reduce software issues/bugs, and/or remove development process bottlenecks. In other cases, such as an M&A integration activity, the need exists to determine internal 'best practices' regarding software processes. Lastly, this service offering is used to evaluate 3rd party vendor practices to determine quality and process 'fit' for the client organization.
Our Tier 1 client contracted a 3rd party web developer to build the corporate web site with online ordering and account management capabilities. The 3rd party developer had no established procedures regarding quality assurance of the user interface. Testing procedures were done on an ad-hoc, random basis creating an inefficient QA process. Communication between the developers and the project team was inconsistent and delayed.
Sonik represented the client's interests by project managing the 3rd party web development team, ensuring industry best practices were adhered to during the development process. In this capacity, Sonik ensured consistent communication protocols were followed amongst all team members. One of the key items was the creation of standardized test methodology. This quality assurance approach included:
  • defined entry and exit criteria
  • standardized test scripts written by the functional owners (instead of the programmers)
  • test script execution procedures (including clearly defined pass / fail criteria)
  • proper execution of functional, system, and user acceptance tests
  • implementation of go-live 'sanity' testing
  • use of an 'issue tracker' accessible by all team members (with proper user permissions)
  • proper sign-off procedures

The client launched its first online store functionality on time and experienced a minimal amount of post go-live issues. In addition, the 3rd party web developer instituted the quality assurance mechanisms and procedures identified during the project for future client work.
   

Keywords: Change Management, client management, Configuration Management, Project Management

Other products and services from Sonikgroup

09-12-2011

sonik group: ++Process and Planning

Generally at this stage, the business vision, objectives and strategy are generally agreed upon, the initiative has been approved by the management team, and budget has been approved/allocated.The Process & Planning phase involves the primary activities that usually comprise a majority of the effort at this stage in the project lifecycle.


09-12-2011

sonik group: ++Implementation

Account management - including customer accounts and personalized services - was one the more contentious items of this initiative.Active participation from all stakeholder groups was critical to the acceptance of the revamped site. This service applies to the support infrastructure as well as the client's products and / or service offerings to the market, such as customer documentation and product specifications.


09-12-2011

sonik group: ++ABOUT SONIK

Three sub-components of Strategic Planning methodology are described in this section: the Objectives-Strategy-Methods Map, the IT Strategic Plan and the marketing strategy.The SDM Objectives - Strategy - Methods Map is one approach employed in this exercise.


09-12-2011

sonik group: ++Post Launch

Cycle Time ImprovementCycle Time Improvement is primarily used by managers seeking to improve their unit's day-to-day operations while maintaining their own management responsibilities. However, in many cases, the client has pre-defined issue classifications which are deferred to instead.Issue Tracking is a fundamental requirement throughout the project lifecycle.