How To Make Quality A Priority In Software Engineering

Since venture capitalist Marc Andressen said that, “software is eating the world”, software has disrupted industry after industry. The most successful software of this era has come from ecosystems that are defined by a culture that places quality at the heart of software development. However, it is one thing to speak about a culture of quality, and quite another to implement this idea. Here’s how you can make quality a priority on software engineering.

Build the Right Team

The quality assurance (QA) analyst, lead and manager are specifically charged with ensuring software quality in the team. However, it is wrong to place the entire burden of software quality on these three individuals. Software quality is a result, not just of technical aspects of software development, but also because of the organizational culture. In order to create that culture, you have to have the right people working within the organization, team members who will hold themselves to a high standard, and demand high standards of their teammates. 

Build Quality into Every Element of Development

HVAC repair services firm, Platinum Comfort Solutions, believes that quality should be built into every element of each stage of the software development process. This means that team members should work together to ensure that the quality of their work is high. For example, Coders should work with lead developers to improve the tightness of the code, and the quality of their work. In another example, you can have lead software developers working with QA managers and software quality engineers to keep software to the standards that the quality guidelines demand.

Get Buy-In

There can be resistance to a new way of working, on the part of any team. Even in the most dysfunctional teams, people get trapped into a routine and a way of working, and fear of the unknown can make change difficult to implement. Trying to force the issue and drag a team toward a certain way of being, is self-defeating, because they can and will silently resist, and this will make it hard for you to succeed. The first obstacle, then, is getting buy-in to your reforms.

It’s important for managers to understand the sources of resistance. For example, even when workers are well paid, they may feel that their work is unrewarding. Teams may also feel that they are being asked to learn new skills, or processes, on top of doing their existing work. This violates an unspoken compact with your workers, who feel as if they are being asked to do more than they are being paid for. 

Have Diverse Teams

The “wisdom of crowds” only works when crowds are diverse, because of the array of skills, backgrounds, and cultures within the crowd. We should also remember that creativity is about bringing together ideas that would otherwise not fit together. The most successful teams can tap into this diversity, because their diversity brings them closer to successful solutions to challenging problems, and allows them to become a creative laboratory fizzing with ideas.