2019 is a pivotal time to determine and allocate spending for your systems and information technology needs. With a new decade starting soon, where do you plan to grow or make improvements? What is already working? And what unseen opportunities are there to make your department more efficient? Here are three tips we think will set the stage for success.

Step 1: Assess Budget Allocation for Expenses

In an IT or development department budget, stagnation in the way costs are allocated occurs in traditional ways.  Physical assets like hardware or a development budget for software are often the definition of a capital expense, while changeable costs like subscription services and employee salaries are operating expenses. We have seen a change in perspective and process associated with the way expenses for quality assurance are allocated in this balance. Seen as an operating expense, quality assurance becomes more customary, rather than a capital expense that only occurs once. Ask yourself how your budget allocation might just be affecting your internal perceptions and processes.

Step 2: Split Up Testing and Quality Assurance

One of the biggest mistakes we see teams making today is expecting a few quality assurance professionals to be experts at the entire quality assurance process. As software gets more complex, the best software quality assurance teams have specialists in areas like test engineering, test architecture, risk management, automation, and more. Each of these areas of expertise is in a state of constant acceleration and innovation, meaning there’s a lot to keep up with. Expecting a few heroes to do it all is a big ask and is more likely to lead to employee burnout and turnover (especially among Millennials).

Step 3: Automate to Focus on Improvements

Another thing to consider when examining how quality assurance fits in with your development process overall is the role of automation. There are some elements of quality assurance that are simply quite tedious, like regression or compatibility testing. Even some elements of performance testing are intensely repetitious. Meanwhile, those individuals could be performing exploratory testing and finding unknown issues—if there was automation. Today, this isn’t only possible, but becoming common faster than people can think about how to use it. As you consider which tests to automate, focus on those that are repetitive, basic, and routine. This will free up your employees to focus on improvements, both to your product and their capabilities.

Leadership, innovation, product, marketing – all of these play an important part in what makes up a company’s success. But all these things must be high quality to be effective. That’s why we’re committed to helping clients set internal standards that raise the bar and keep it high. We hope these strategies help you do the same. If you find yourself in need of a software quality assurance partner, don’t forget us in the months ahead.