QA and client handlingShilpa Desai
Client calls are integral part of software development and deployment. It directs and coordinates the flow of the directions for development and deployment; keeping the channels of communication open throughout various teams within the company.
For a QA, client call can spell disaster many a time; especially when those calls are direct result of errors, angst, irritability, disappointment.
QA are the group of people who can very well take care of these situations. But also, client calls during various other situations can help the entire development flow of the project.
Calls with requirements: sometimes requirements or change in requirements are guised as errors or bugs or issues and mailed/called to QA. QA with thorough understanding of the project can smartly understand these “errors or bugs or issues” and clarify succinctly either on call or mail.
With genuine requirements or change in requirements, QA can prepare a list, analyse, discuss amongst the team, document as per the SDLC process and give a go ahead for development and then release. They would then play a pivotal role in demonstrating the proto to the client, understand the nitty gritty and deliver the end product as per the requirements in part or full.
Calls followed by the prototype demonstration: many a time this would lead to deviation in the original timelines. QA can make sure they understand the talk they have during prototyping. Allow ample time to the clients to review and digest the development end result, explain the working and resolve all queries and proceed to keep ahead with the timelines set.
Calls during testing and at the time of release: it would be very important to understand the gist and details of these calls as it surely can put the deviation in project plan and timelines can be skewed. The call should be handled in a way to distinguish the requirements to be taken immediately or later on and be explained to the clients explicitly. These calls can be longer calls to convince the clients, explain the plan in detail to avoid any confusion or misunderstanding.
Lastly, calls during execution: these calls might spell doom when scripts fail, if there are complications/issues/bugs/errors and should be handled with utmost care and caution. In such a case, a focused, patient response should be the best way to tackle. All issues/bugs/errors be taken care of tested and re-released with extra care and pronto. Poor/improper/hurried testing be compensated with quality of work and delivery with a tight track of such, kept a note of for future. Testing as normal be carried out in same patience to avoid more bugs.
The highlight is that that the software testing requires patience and thorough understanding approached with care and prudence to deliver quality product.
But on top of this, client communication is a balance to find, keep and maintain with good understanding, staying calm especially under pressure and taking care of client anxieties as patiently as possible.