Written by Angela Robinson, Web Developer
Hey, who needs it?!
Have you ever visited a website that irritated your soul because of the use of their, there, and they’re? A site that raised the hairs on the back of your neck with the sheer quantity of broken links within it? Do you manage or own a website that turns your visitors into IET – Instant English Teachers?
No? Great! Then this article is not for you. For the rest of you mere mortals, I will state that the message of this article is simple: Do Not Skip Out on the QA Process!
Quality Assurance – Pizza, Cheeseburgers, or Nachos?
Believe or not, there are many IT professionals that has either – a) never heard of Quality Assurance, b) has heard of it but has never included it’s process into their website development cycle, or c) considers it a complete waste of time and resources. This is because Quality Assurance is all about pizza, cheeseburgers or nachos.
The meaning of Quality Assurance or QA is in the definition of the words. The assurance that your website doesn’t suck and every piece of information contained within it meets quality standards – pictures, videos, the words in pictures and videos.
When you’re playing putt-putt golf at the local Magic Mountain, are you expecting to see Tiger Woods? No! But what if he does show up… with his kids… and his entourage… and dozens of paparazzi. If you’re the owner of that Magic Mountain, wouldn’t you like to double check your inventory, or make sure everything is clean, or all the vomit is removed from the jungle gym that a certain adult snuck into (NOTE – I know nothing about that). But that’s what QA is all about – a double check, a triple check, a quick check.
Remember way, way, way back in school and your math teacher told you to double check your work. The difference of checking or not checking your work can mean an A+ or a C-. That same rule applies here.
Why is it all about pizza, cheeseburgers, and nachos?
How would you make a pizza?
- You make the crust (the website design)
- You put the sauce on top of the crust (the website layout, code, a management system, a database, etc.)
- Any self-respecting pizzeria knows that the cheese (the content) goes on first!
- Then depending on your customer, the toppings goes on next:
- Does the customer want a lot of pepperoni (forms or applications) – then you must check that the pepperonis are on the pizza (that the forms or applications work)
- Does the customer want a supreme pizza with a lot of various toppings (a blog, import of old but necessary data, etc.) – then you must check that the toppings are on the pizza (that the blog is working, that the import was successful)
- Does the customer want a pineapple and chicken (a bunch of bells and whistles that’s really not relevant to the site but is fun to look at) – then you must check that the toppings are on the pizza (this would be an entirely different article)
- Bake at 425 degrees and once done give it to your customer (present the finished website to client and release the website to the production stage)
Five steps to make a great pizza – it’s a family recipe. Five well thought out and defined steps with 3 possible QA processes to make a great and user friendly website. The better defined your QA process is, the better your website will be.
How do you make a cheeseburger?
- Fry the hamburger meat in a smashed oval, or square, shaped patty, flipping it on both sides until it’s done (the website design and layout)
- Slap the hamburger patty on a hamburger bun – with Miracle Whip and cheese – (the content)
- You might take the time to add the fixings to the hamburger – like onions (forms or applications), pickles (a blog), or ketchup (other bells and whistles) – and check to see that the toppings are on the cheeseburger.
- Wrap it up and give it to your customer (present the finished website to client and release the website to the production stage)
Four steps to make a cheeseburger.
Four semi-defined steps with the QA process and activation dependent entirely on the customer. Because the QA process is dependent on the customer there is not guarantee that it will be executed. If you lead your customers to believe that the QA process is an unnecessary fixing and depending on what that fixing is, it might cost more, then prepare to live with the consequences of those beliefs – over extended budget, higher demand on support resources to fix production site errors and issues, less willingness to actual pay for a process that could save time, money and your customer’s customers, and so much more can be reaped from that disastrous belief.
How do you make nachos?
- Buy tortilla chips and a cheese dip
- Put it in a bowl or serving tray
- Dig in!
Nachos are fun to look at in the beginning, and they might taste very good. But its easy food – easy to buy and easy to forget. There are millions of “nachos” sites. Some don’t even look or smell good. These are cringe worthy sites that I will not waste another sentence on.
Do Not Skip Out on the QA Process!
Don’t even think about!
You! Yes, you in the business suit. You running that awesome, local IT business, down the street from McDonald’s, with your brother and father. You’re the person in charge of it all. When your team properly applies a consistent and detailed QA process into their website development cycle business will be a’ booming!
Because – hey, who needs it?! Everybody! Even “pizza” websites. And you do know that it’s all about pizza, cheeseburgers, and nachos.
Is it lunchtime yet?