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6 reasons why independent testing benefits in-house teams

6 reasons why independent testing benefits in-house teams
Independent Testing

Many in-house development teams suffer from not having the ability to fully test the functionality they build before it is released.

This can be the case even when there is a QA member on the team, quite often because the QA gets stretched across several projects at the same time.

This is one obvious area where independent testing comes in but there are a number of key benefits, several of which may not immediately spring to mind.

Increased capacity and skills

In-house teams often have several projects on the go but only a single QA team member to test them all. In-house testers can easily get stretched whereas handing some of your testing projects to an external testing outfit allows you to tap into an expandable team. Additionally, you can benefit from an increase range of testing skills covering website testing, software testing, mobile testing and usability or user experience testing.

Increased experience

An independent testing team will have tested a large number of projects, ranging from small content managed websites up to large, complex web applications for multinational organisations. The knowledge and experience built up through testing on all these projects is applied to your projects.

Integration with your workflow

A good independent testing firm should be able to integrate with your processes, existing team and workflow to provide a seamless testing service. Assigning bug tickets from your bug tracker to retest, or user stories to test from your project management system, enables the independent testing company to get stuck in to the testing and provide timely feedback. Communication using Slack or Skype allows finer points and queries to be quickly covered.

Maintain independence

An independent testing firm is just that, independent, which enables them to really focus on discovering problems, find issues that are affecting quality and clearly report findings to you.

User experience testing

Independent testers should be able to place themselves in the mind of your customer and use your website as though they were looking to carry out a purchase, or make a booking, or simply use the website. This enables them to find issues that are unclear, confusing or frustrating for the user, or may have a negative impact on the user’s experience. By being slightly separated from the business, independent testers are not constrained by internal consensus, allowing more user experience problems to be discovered and reported back, greatly improving the site’s usability.

Value for money

Independent testing should provide highly competent testing services at a competitive rate whilst allowing you to utilise the services as much or as little as you require. All of this is without having to take on the long term commitment of an in-house tester.

Our view is that independent testing can greatly benefit most organisations and become a valued and highly effective tool to verify and increase website quality.

Tom Batey, founder of WebDepend, is a hands on website tester focusing on quality across web, mobile and email.

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