Software QA Process: All Quality Assurance Process Steps Covered + More

Tuhin Bhatt

Co-founder of Intelivita

  Published on December 22, 2023

  10 min read

You proofread emails before hitting the send button, right?

Similar action should be applied to your digital products through the QA testing process.

It’s a final check to uncover defects before your new app or software reaches the customer’s hand.

The testing process involves various methods, from analyzing requirements to creating a detailed test plan.

Ensuring your software can deliver a smooth, hassle-free experience to everyone who uses it.

In this blog, we’ll walk you through how this process works, so the software you develop meets the highest quality and performance standards.

What is the Software QA Testing Process?

The software QA process systematically ensures that a product meets specific quality standards and functions as intended.

During and after the software development process, the product is tested manually or with automated tools in various scenarios.

The goal is to verify its proper functioning and provide a good user experience.

A general method of the QA process includes tests like unit, integration, and system testing, each targeting different aspects of the software.

To be specific, a range of testing methods involves checking individual components (unit testing), assessing how these components interact with each other (integration testing), and evaluating the software as a whole (system testing).

You can also use software testing services to identify and resolve issues.

They usually provide thorough evaluation and optimization of your software for peak performance.

Benefits of Doing QA Testing

QA process provides many benefits, particularly in cost savings and producing a more reliable product, leading to satisfied customers.

1. Save Money

The cost of fixing bugs increases dramatically (4 to 5 times) as the software progresses through the stages of development.

Identifying and fixing bugs early in the software development lifecycle (SDLC) significantly reduces the expenses of correcting these issues later on.

Early detection and resolution of defects mean less rework and fewer resources spent on post-release fixes, which can be expensive and damaging to your company’s reputation.

Also, setting clear KPIs for software development during the QA process helps align team efforts with project goals and ensures timely delivery.

2. Produce a More Reliable Product

By thoroughly testing each component and the software, QA ensures that the final product functions correctly under various scenarios and meets all specified requirements.

The comprehensive testing leads to developing software free from critical bugs that perform consistently and efficiently.

Moreover, reliable software means fewer customer complaints, less time and resources spent on customer support, and a better overall user experience.

3. Prevent Fatal System Failures

QA testing process identifies and addresses potential system-breaking bugs by testing the software at various stages of development.

This approach is vital in avoiding scenarios where software malfunctions could lead to significant financial loss, damage to reputation, or even legal consequences.

For instance, a minor glitch in financial applications can result in a substantial monetary imbalance.

Similarly, in healthcare systems, software errors can have life-threatening implications.

Therefore, include QA testing in your software development strategy to safeguard against potential disasters.

4. Maintain an Excellent User Experience

Software’s success heavily relies on user experience. A product that excels in functionality but fails in user-friendliness can quickly lose appeal.

QA testing process ensures the software is technically sound and aligns with the audience’s needs and preferences by identifying issues such as:

  • Confusing navigation
  • Slow load times
  • Unresponsive features

How to Setup Your QA Testing Process

Follow these five steps in setting up an effective QA testing process to ensure the reliability of your software.

#1. Hire Team Members and Appoint a Quality Owner

A skilled and dedicated software development team is the foundation of a successful QA testing process.

These individuals should have a keen eye for detail and a deep understanding of software development and testing principles.

Alongside the team, appoint a Quality Owner with extensive experience in QA and a strong understanding of the software development lifecycle.

The Quality Owner oversees the entire QA process, ensures testing strategies align with project goals, and maintains quality standards throughout development.

#2. Align QA with Your Development Model

Whether the development follows Agile, Waterfall, or any other methodology, QA should be seamlessly incorporated into the model.

In Agile environments, for instance, QA is integrated into every sprint, allowing for continuous testing and immediate feedback.

In contrast, in a Waterfall model, QA typically occurs after the development phase, requiring a more structured and comprehensive testing approach before the product’s release.

#3. Develop a Detailed Test Plan and System

A QA testing plan should outline the scope of testing, objectives, resources, schedule, and methodologies.

It serves as a roadmap for the team, detailing:

  • What needs to be tested
  • How it will be tested
  • Who will perform each test

Also, the plan should include a variety of tests, such as functional, usability, performance, and security tests, to ensure all aspects of the software are thoroughly evaluated.

#4. Prioritize Manual Testing Before Automation

Manual testing gives the team a thorough grasp of the software’s functionality and user experience.

It also uncovers scenarios and conditions that may not be anticipated in automated test script development.

Once manual testing offers a comprehensive insight into the software and its possible issues, the team can progress to automated testing.

#5. Provide Tools for Reporting Errors and Bugs

Equip your QA team with practical tools for reporting errors and bugs.

These tools should:

  • Streamline identifying and documenting issues
  • Facilitate communication and collaboration among team members

This systematic approach ensures that no critical issue is overlooked and that all team members know the current state of the software’s quality.

A well-organized approach is essential in managing the workflow efficiently and prioritizing tasks.

Stages for Software QA Testing

There are six stages for a successful testing strategy, ensuring your team clearly understands what needs to be tested and how to carry out the testing effectively.

Requirement Analysis

In this stage, the QA team reviews the software requirements to ensure they’re complete, precise, consistent, verifiable, and testable.

If the requirements are ambiguous, it can lead to gaps in testing and potential issues in the final product.

This stage often involves close collaboration with stakeholders to clarify uncertainties and ensure the testing team understands the software’s intended functionality and user expectations.

Test Planning

The test plan outlines the testing strategy and includes details such as the scope of testing, objectives, resources, schedule, and methodologies to be used.

It’s a blueprint for the QA process, guiding the team on what tests must be conducted, when, and by whom.

It also defines the criteria for starting and stopping the QA testing process and how defects will be documented and managed.

Test Design

Test design is where the QA team decides how to test the software and what specific aspects to focus on.

This includes:

  • Defining the test objectives
  • Identifying the test conditions
  • Creating the test cases and scripts

This stage also involves setting up the test environment and preparing the necessary data for testing.

UI/UX Testing

User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX) testing focus on how the end user interacts with the software.

UI testing involves checking the visual elements of the software, such as buttons, menus, and layouts, to ensure they are functioning correctly and are user-friendly.

UX testing, on the other hand, is about the overall experience of using the software.

It evaluates:

  • How intuitive and easy the software is
  • How quickly users can complete tasks
  • How satisfied they are with the software

Exploratory Testing

Unlike predefined test cases, exploratory testing relies on the tester’s experience, intuition, and creativity.

Testers navigate the application, trying out different functionalities and scenarios to identify potential bugs, usability issues, or unexpected behavior.

This approach is particularly effective in finding complex, real-world problems and provides insights into how the software behaves under varied and unplanned conditions.

Regression Testing

Regression testing becomes essential after you modify or update the software.

It ensures that new changes have not adversely affected the software’s existing functionalities.

Regression testing is crucial for maintaining the integrity of the software over time, especially when you introduce new features.

It helps identify potential consequences, ensuring the software remains stable and reliable after each update.

Common Types of QA Testing

Here are the most used types in the software QA process.

1. Unit Testing

A unit refers to the smallest part of any software that can be tested, typically having one or a few inputs and usually a single output.

A unit could be a whole module in procedural programming, but it’s often just a single function or procedure.

The developers, not the testers, usually carry out unit testing, as it requires an in-depth understanding of the internal design and code of the program.

Isolating each unit and testing it to ensure its correctness, unit testing helps detect early defects in the software, which can be fixed before the code progresses to the integration testing phase.

2. Integration Testing

Integration testing involves combining individual units and testing them as a group.

The goal is to uncover any issues that may arise when these units interact with each other.

Tools like test drivers and test stubs are utilized to facilitate integration testing.

There are different approaches to integration testing, such as:

  • Top-down
  • Bottom-up
  • Sandwich approaches

3. Performance Testing

Performance testing evaluates a software application’s speed, responsiveness, stability, and resource usage under a particular workload.

It includes:

  • Load testing
  • Stress testing
  • Capacity testing

This QA testing type helps identify any performance bottlenecks in the system and is essential for applications that expect high user traffic.

4. Functional Testing

Functional testing aims to check the software for functionalities, APIs, user interfaces, databases, security, and client/server applications and ensure they work as expected.

This testing is based on the user’s perspective and is essential for verifying that the software works as planned.

Functional testing involves a series of tests like smoke, sanity, and regression testing.

5. Regression Testing

When you add new features to a software application, there’s always a risk that these additions could disrupt existing features.

Regression testing ensures that new code changes do not negatively impact the existing functionality of the product.

It entails repeating functional and non-functional tests to confirm that the previously developed and tested software still works as expected after modifications.

6. End-to-end Testing

End-to-end testing aims to replicate real user scenarios to ensure the system behaves as intended in a production-like environment, checking:

  • The code’s correctness
  • Integration with external interfaces and databases
  • Network communication
  • Overall performance and behavior under different conditions

7. Acceptance Testing

This is the final phase of the QA testing process to ensure the software meets the business requirements and is ready for delivery.

Often known as User Acceptance Testing (UAT), it involves software users and aims to validate the end-to-end business flow.

Acceptance testing helps determine whether the software meets the objective and if the user or the stakeholders can accept it.


The QA testing process encompasses various stages and types of testing, each designed to ensure that software products meet quality standards and function as intended.

Each step is crucial in identifying and addressing potential issues, from the initial stages of requirement analysis to the final stages of regression and acceptance testing.

The QA process involves manual and automated testing methods, allowing for a thorough examination of the software from different angles.

By implementing a comprehensive QA testing strategy, your team can significantly reduce the risk of post-release issues, enhance the overall quality of the software, and ensure a positive user experience.

Looking for a reliable partner to develop your software?

Check out Intelivita. With over a decade in the business, we know how to build custom apps and software that really work for you.

Our team excels in front-end and back-end development, ensuring your software is robust and reliable and boasts a user-friendly interface.

So, contact us if you want software that stands out and does the job well!


Tuhin Bhatt is a co-founder of Intelivita, a leading Web and Mobile App Development Company. He helps passionate entrepreneurs build amazing tech products. Tuhin being a peoples man who has a passion to share his technical expertise with clients and other enthusiasts.

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