software development, software testing and consulting

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Quality Assurance for Information Systems


The phrase "Quality Assurance" covers the development of policies, the procedures that are followed to "meet" the policies and the work methods and standards used in undertaking the procedures to produce what's required.

Quality Control, on the other hand, is the process that measures or analyses what's been produced (the deliverable) versus the standards, work methods or procedures that were to be followed in producing the item.

Quality Assurance documents how something gets done - Quality Control checks against this documentation that this has been done.

Quality Assurance brings a structured approach to a task so that nothing is missed or overlooked in its production. Formalising tasks such as Project Initiation (what has to be done before a project gets off the ground) means that everybody knows how to start up a project, who to get authorisation from, who will make the decision and what the cost benefit of doing the project is. With all the deliverables from the Project Initiation task available, an informed decision can be made based on them.

So how can we help?

We will help you create or formalise the policies you have in "running" your business, and, work out with your staff the procedures to cover how these policies should be achieved - it's important that the staff have input into the procedures produced.

One way, just as an example of what can be done, is the analysis of Fault Logs or Help Desk Calls looking for patterns and answering the question, "What can be done to avoid this happening again". If you aren't recording into Fault Logs or Help Desk Call Logs then I can help in the development of Procedures and Work Methods that works out what to do when a call is received, who to refer the call to, and the path to follow for each categorised call.

Typically, you start out with a form to do your recording upon of the details you want captured or analysed. Following on from this, you can replace the forms with a computerised one - the advantage of the progression from forms to a "system" is that you already have the details of the requirements for your new system which can be used to provide the scope of what's needed.

The "capturing of the details" is really only half the job; the main point from a Quality Assurance perspective is the analysis of the captured information. This becomes part of the function of the Fault Logs or Help Desk Calls process and the responsibility of someone to perform this on a regular basis would be defined in the developed procedures.

The procedures are going to document "how-to" and "what-to-do" to meet the defined business policy. If required, Work Methods can be documented to create low-level instructions to achieve the standard(s) required.

Each Procedure has a measurable or deliverable defined for it so that you know what you have to produce - this is also what's used to check against to see if the procedure has been completed.

Give us a call to discuss your IT and systems development requirements ...


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