Outsourced Software Testing: The Ultimate Guide

Evgeniy Brik

Evgeniy Brik

Head of QA at Andersen

Jul 27, 2022
Lesedauer: 8 Min.
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With an increased number of companies worldwide going digital and more and more people making use of cutting-edge technologies, today’s users expect nothing less than high-quality software products with outstanding performance. Therefore, software testing is no longer an option but an integral part of the software development life cycle. While hiring in-house testers is somewhat beneficial as you have full control over the testing process, it requires a substantial investment in streamlining the hiring process, onboarding and training newcomers, and creating proper test environments and infrastructure. In this article, Andersen’s QA experts will share their vision of outsourced software testing, its role in improving the quality of IT products and business processes, and the reasons why business leaders are opting for this cooperation model more often than ever before.

Why is quality assurance outsourcing a thing?

Outsourcing processes or services means entrusting their implementation to an external vendor on a contract basis. According to Statista, the size of the global outsourced services market amounted to a staggering $92.5 billion in 2019. In the same year, the revenue of the business process outsourcing sector including IT outsourcing reached $26 billion.

Global Market Size of Outsourced services

IT outsourcing implies contracting out the delivery of software solutions and entrusting IT-related services to external software development companies. Businesses can outsource their processes in full or in part, offshore or to domestic providers.

IT outsourcing accounts for about one-third of the global outsourcing market’s revenue. Below are just a few facts proving the increased popularity of IT outsourcing worldwide:

  • the revenue of this outsourcing category is about to exceed $396 billion and will continue growing by about 8% yearly up until 2027 at least;
  • the global market in this segment is projected to surpass $587 billion by 2027;
  • the highest revenue in the segment is produced in the US (over $144 billion as of 2022).

With this being said, more and more business owners are realizing that a solid quality assurance strategy, well-oiled testing processes, and end-to-end testing contribute to substantial improvement of their products’ quality. Therefore, companies are opting for quality assurance outsourcing to uphold their reputation for excellence and ensure a seamless customer experience.

Outsourced QA and testing come to the rescue when the following issues arise:

  • the quality of an existing software product is insufficient and the product itself is unstable;
  • there are not enough QA experts on a project which leads to insufficient test coverage of the product’s functionality and missed deadlines;
  • a company experiences a need to improve its testing processes, elaborate a solid test strategy, and organize and update test documentation.

Why outsource software testing?

Below are just a few compelling advantages that software QA outsourcing grants companies:

Expertise

It goes without saying that professional software outsourcing companies with years of experience have a holistic approach toward quality assurance, ensuring the compliance of your project with IT industry trends and best practices. Top-notch QA professionals are proficient in performing the following tasks:

  • drawing up exhaustive test documentation, including a test strategy, a test plan, test cases, checklists, and more;
  • suggesting innovative ideas and looking at a problem from different angles to streamline a company’s testing processes and improve product quality;
  • delivering a wide range of high-quality testing services from performing QA audits to establishing companies’ end-to-end testing processes;
  • ensuring unit, integration, and end-to-end testing throughout the entire software development life cycle, including the post-delivery support;
  • performing testing operations using the latest technologies, frameworks, testing tools, and devices.

Customization

Every project is unique, therefore, QA outsourcing services are tailored to a business’s specific needs and fixed in a Service Level Agreement. The customer is the one who, together with their outsourcing partner, decides on the scope of work, the team’s size, the duration, budget, and outcomes of the project.

Speed

Outsourced testing means that a customer won’t need to hire, onboard, and train in-house specialists or ensure that the required tools and infrastructure are in place. Outsourcing your testing processes to professionals allows you to launch your product to the market faster and thus, speed up your ROI. Andersen’s team of experts is ready to start working on a customer’s project within ten business days of the approval of the project proposal by both parties.

Cost-effectiveness

Statistically, the average yearly salary of a QA engineer in the US is $76,000 with an average hourly rate of about $37.

Average Software Testers Salary

When opting for outsourced testing, especially offshore software testing in Eastern Europe, Poland, Ukraine, Georgia, etc. a customer gets access to skilled and professional QA engineers at affordable rates. Thus, outsourcing allows companies to broaden their choice of available middle-level, senior-level, and lead engineers while paying less for their high-quality work.

Challenges of QA outsourcing

Along with undeniable advantages, outsourced software testing has its challenges. Below are the issues customers are most concerned about but which can be resolved when working with a professional vendor:

Communication issues

Today, companies can partner with IT vendors located in other parts of the world. Sometimes this partnership is accompanied by communication gaps, complications due to different time zones, and language issues.

To avoid possible complications, consider companies with a proven track record in your region, e.g. with experience in working for US and European customers. Additionally, ask your vendor to arrange online interviews each time you are about to receive a new QA specialist in your team so that you can verify their hard and soft skills.

Insufficient data security

Sometimes, customers associate quality assurance outsourcing with data loss and leakage believing that the external company’s employees can’t ensure the same level of data security and confidentiality that an in-house team can.

However, professional IT vendors always provide their customers with the possibility of having a non-disclosure agreement signed. An NDA guarantees that the highest level of information security will be ensured, even after their project is completed.

Inadequate level of services

When customers outsource software QA, they may doubt that the level of services offered to them will be sufficient to meet their business needs. In addition, they may wonder how to monitor the performance of their vendor’s testers.

These fears are groundless as, when one enters into a partnership with a custom software development company, both parties sign a Service Level Agreement. An SLA precisely defines the scope, cost, milestones, deadlines, metrics, and goals of the cooperation.

Further to this, representatives from the vendor’s side provide the customer with regular feedback on how the work progresses. The customer, in turn, can attend Scrum events, e.g. the Sprint Review, and thus, stay updated.

Lack of domain expertise

Every industry has specific requirements and limitations applied to software and systems. Moreover, every business is unique and its processes should be tailored to its needs. Therefore, customers are right to consider IT vendors’ expertise in their industry, as a lack of it will unnecessarily extend and complicate the testing process.

To make sure your prospective vendor possesses the deep industry-specific expertise you require, check their portfolio, rating platforms, and customer reviews. Look for companies with a proven track record in the leading industries, such as Healthcare, FinTech, Logistics, eCommerce, etc., that have successfully implemented projects similar to yours.

Outsourced testing best practices

To ensure well-oiled testing processes and help our customers reach their business goals and benefit from high-performing software solutions, Andersen’s QA experts adhere to the following best practices:

Establishing long-term partnerships

Any company can benefit from software QA outsourcing regardless of the duration of their project. However, Andersen treats every customer as a long-term partner, meaning we assign a dedicated manager and specialists to their project, provide regular feedback on the work’s progress, and take into account all of our customer’s requests to ensure the best possible outcomes. Thus, we continually improve the quality of our testing services, and our customers return to us over and over again.

Offering managed testing services

In order to establish solid testing processes for our customers’ products while enabling them to efficiently monitor our team’s performance, Andersen provides managed testing services. Dedicated QA lead engineers with years of experience in coordinating projects of any complexity will organize and streamline your testing processes, building strong teams and ensuring efficient resource allocation.

Adherence to best Agile practices

Following best Agile practices allows Andersen to stay flexible when meeting our customers’ needs and fulfilling their projects’ requirements. Moreover, we implement a well-thought-out test strategy throughout the software development life cycle, performing test planning and writing test cases based on product requirements even before the beginning of the development stage. All this allows for improved testability and higher test coverage, ensuring improved product quality and boosting client satisfaction rates.

Test automation

By automating our customers’ testing processes, Andersen’s QA professionals substantially speed up products' time to market, improve their stability and performance, and reduce software spending. If a customer requires a QA audit and consulting prior to implementing test automation from scratch, Andersen’s specialists will inspect their processes, business logic, interfaces, databases, etc. to offer the best possible automation testing solutions.

To sum up

Quality assurance outsourcing is an effective yet cost-saving solution that frees up business leaders allowing them to focus on strategic tasks while starting to reap benefits from the cooperation with a QA outsourcing vendor within weeks.

When partnering with Andersen, our customers can expect nothing less than flawless test documentation, comprehensive quality assurance strategies throughout their processes, and outstanding end-to-end quality of their products. If you need a hand with software quality auditing and testing for a project of any complexity, do not hesitate to contact us.

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Evgeniy Brik, Head of QA at Andersen
Evgeniy Brik

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