So many people want to get their sites/projects/etc out so fast they completely overlook quality assurance (QA). I have recently worked with two extremes and wanted to comment on both.
- Quality Assurance pre-release Any time I work on a project – I always build in time for quality assurance. Quality assurance time is specifically spent on browser issues, adding sample content, and making changes. I recently worked with a client that spent two weeks on quality assurance and added several hundred test posts for sample content in order to work out any bugs that needed to be fixed. How did the release go? Pretty darn smooth. The initial few days were not stressful nor were they all consuming due to issues that users found. The site premiered as professional and well put together.
- Quality Assurance post-release I have also recently worked on a project that had to be put out ASAP and when I say ASAP – I mean frantic calls at all hours of the day, crazy status checks, and a completely rushed process. The result: the project was pushed out way to soon, and there were massive changes/updates after the site was live and people were viewing it. How did the release go? It went out early, and something was “there” but so were issues…and the issues were visible for all to see. Generally – I do not generate sloppy code or anything that would cause issues on purpose – but there are things that will show up only after proper testing is done. Since the testing was done after the site was live – the issues were much more visible because users were the ones reporting them – making the site look much less put together. How did the release go? Frantic.
The moral of the story here: I know there are times when “rush jobs” are needed – just remember that with rush jobs – you will see issues post-release instead of pre-release. If that is ok with you (beta site) then that is fine, but do not expect a completely functional and “perfect” product if you do not test it (regardless of who creates it).
Like my friend D always says:
I can give you a product that is built well, built quickly, and built cheap – you pick two.
After doing some home improvement projects in the last few weeks – I can say the same is true there. All I ask of people is to realize that there is a cost with everything. My suggestion: do it right the first time and always make quality assurance a priority – or you will end up paying more later. A little QA goes a long way.