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If the job of quality engineering is to proactively ensure quality design, then quality engineering software provides tools to support the quality engineering process.

According to CISQ, in 2018, spending on global information technology reached $4.8 trillion, with $1.5 trillion in the US alone. Given such high spending, it may surprise you that poor-quality software resulted in costs of over $2 trillion.

Quality engineering software provides tools that aid quality assurance initiatives with consistent insights that reduce costs.

What is Quality Engineering Software?

Quality assurance professionals are responsible for ensuring product quality, and quality engineering software is the ticket to your quality assurance team’s success. This is because quality engineering software helps the team identify problems and solutions and even shows when a product update may be due.

The Purpose of Quality Engineering Software

Quality engineers analyze products throughout their life cycles and recommend improvements based on data provided by quality engineering software. The tracked data is placed in context with larger systems and complies with software testing standards such as IEEE Standard 829. These tests support software engineers in maintaining software quality assurance.

The Common Types of Quality Engineering Software

Quality engineering software comprises many common types:

  • Robotic process automation collects and manipulates data and follows an established workflow for communicating with other systems.
  • DevOps is part of an Agile management methodology that combines software development and IT operations for collaborative development and software maintenance.
  • Testing software tests products, captures data, and manages results.
  • Analysis software focuses on processes and workflows within a system.
  • Analytics reveals tracked data, generally regarding product usage.
  • Infrastructure software ranges from operating systems to servers, databases, networks, clouds, virtualization tools, and beyond.
  • Development software includes programs and languages used for product creation.
  • Collaboration software consists of applications that promote shared knowledge and experience.
  • Productivity software helps quality engineers accomplish tasks, whether browsing the web or producing documents.
  • Security software tests and maintains application integrity.
  • Cloud-based services allow device and application testing as well as service management.
  • Utility software supports development and troubleshooting through tools such as emulation, language processing, and remote access.
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Benefits of Quality Engineering Software

Quality engineers use various software testing tools to ensure a quality product, but what are the benefits of using quality engineering software?

Quality Benefits

Quality engineering benefits product development in three main ways:

  • The product team gains greater awareness of quality standards and can, therefore, facilitate a culture of quality.
  • Quality engineering improves the software development process.
  • Quality engineering encourages data-driven improvements.

Quality engineering software provides these benefits with consistent and actionable insights:

  • Process metrics quantify the efficiency and effectiveness of processes.
  • Product metrics measure costs, quality, and timelines.
  • Organizational metrics outline the impacts of infrastructure on product quality.

Cost Benefits

How does quality engineering software reduce the extensive costs related to poor-quality software?

In the software development lifecycle (SDLC), testing should occur early and often. Implementing testing at all stages of the process is known as a shift-left testing approach. As a result, a software development engineer in testing develops a plan early in the development process. The test plan often involves reviews of requirements, automated tests, team collaboration, and formal technical reviews to find functional and logical errors.

The automation of the software speeds up identifying and solving problems, especially in a shift-left model. With readily available data, quality engineering software reduces human error and provides clear reports based on the testing services needed.

How to Select the Right Quality Engineering Software

Quality engineering can be achieved through a wide variety of software. Some software is geared toward testing, some toward process or analytics, and still more toward other aspects of software quality management.

Selecting Software

Every project will have its own goals, requirements, and challenges. Still, ISO 9000-certified software is the gold standard of quality engineering software. Software with this certification suggests your product will be evaluated with the highest quality management criteria. ISO 9000 certification standards are based on a detailed breakdown of these principles:

  • Customer focus regarding the satisfaction of current and future customers
  • Leadership with vision, goals, values, trust, and employee empowerment
  • Engagement with people regarding accountability, valuation, performance, education, and other categories
  • Process approach to managing activities and resources
  • Improvement of the organization and people within it
  • Evidence-based decision-making with accurate data
  • Relationship management with suppliers

Choosing Features

No matter what your project is, consider these features when comparing quality engineering software: integration, automated testing, collaboration, and flexibility.

Integration of the application into environments is an important feature of quality engineering software.

Similarly, automated testing can seamlessly test the product across multiple platforms, devices, and browsers. To do this functional testing without quality engineering software, a software quality engineer would spend an immense amount of time in manual testing. In a test automation framework, the most important test management features are user experience, multiple projects and user permissions, data tracking, scheduling and organization, monitoring, and flexibility.

Collaboration is an essential feature of quality engineering software, especially for DevOps. The project team must communicate clearly and easily to work toward project objectives.

Flexibility refers to how well the software adapts to the needs of a project. Especially in an Agile environment, project teams need to adjust quickly to solve problems or meet objectives.

Examples of Quality Engineering Software

Once you know which features you desire in quality engineering software, you should consider what software provides the features you need.

Automation Testing Software

Automation testing software completes repetitive tasks through mobile and web testing. Some of the best automation testing software solutions are LambdaTest, Testim, and Kobiton.

  • LambdaTest provides an online Selenium Grid prepared with your test scripts, browsers, and operating systems. With detailed automation test logs and recordings, LambdaTest stands out as our top pick.
  • Testim uses artificial intelligence (AI) for continuous testing. Quality engineers' author tests are executed across multiple browsers to generate bug reports. The codeless and coded test creation appeals to both novice and advanced users.
  • Kobiton offers a full mobile app testing platform for the entire SDLC. Its AI helps to automate scripting and testing, including automated test generation from manual test sessions. Plus, it supports test automation frameworks such as Appium, Espresso, and XCTest.

See our 2023 list of the best quality assurance automation tools for more software options. 

Defect Tracking Software

Defect tracking software logs bug reports throughout the SDLC, but many applications make defect tracking a feature of a larger software package. Consider these three examples:

  • BugHerd is a slim, low-tech defect tracking software. As a browser extension, BugHerd has its users place comments directly into the browser window while the software captures related data about the user’s technology. Then, the data appears on a Kanban-style board, and the project team can address the defects.
  • Backlog tracks bugs and project milestones, logging a history of issues and status changes. Its charts and Kanban-style boards support the project team’s progress.
  • DoneDone, like BugHerd and Backlog, incorporates task tracking and assignments to resolve defects within a project management interface. Its workflows streamline communication between the support team and customers.

Load Testing Software

Load testing software assesses a system’s performance under realistic conditions. Typically, load testing identifies maximum operating capacity, the sufficiency of infrastructure, system sustainability at peak load, and a number of supportable users. Some of the top performers in 2021 include these load testing software apps:

  • LoadNinja identifies web and API performance problems in a clear user interface. Its tests use real browsers at scale and are enhanced with AI to save time compared with traditional tools.
  • WAPT records real-life web sessions for user-designed tests. Its extensive JavaScript, recording, and auto parameterization of most dynamic values make it stand out among competitors.
  • WebLOAD uses a flexible test format in JavaScript where users can add and modify protocols for project quality objectives. Its simulations for load and performance are intuitive, and the software’s play and record features support data tracking.

Getting Started With Quality Engineering Software

Whether you need automation, defect, load, or other quality engineering software, you are bound to see improvements in your product and reductions in costs. Determine the features that suit your project, and the software that provides it, and create a quality strategy.

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Vinci Lam
By Vinci Lam

Vinci Lam is the Editor of The QA Lead, a digital publication from media company BWZ that is quickly becoming one of the most credible platforms for quality engineering and thought leadership. Vinci directs the content strategy that brings 70K+ visitors to the The QA Lead site every month, building it into the largest, most influential and active community of technology and quality leaders in the world.