Software testing and quality assurance (QA) ensure the success of any software development project. Additionally, offshore software testing can help you find skilled and experienced testers, which may be difficult due to the fierce competition within the IT labor market.
Properly managing an offshore software development team is key to overcoming the scarcity of local talent. However, establishing a partnership with a team from a different country will open up unique challenges.
In this blog, we will delve into the intricacies of managing an offshore software testing team for testing and QA tasks so you can have a better working relationship with the team.
7 Tips for Better Offshore Software Testing and QA Management
Hiring a team with offshore QA expertise is not enough to speed up or improve your software development process. You must also manage them effectively to achieve your desired results and prevent errors and delays throughout your partnership. Here are some ways to manage an offshore software development team during testing and QA tasks.
Set clear expectations about the tests
Transparency and open communication are vital in any collaboration. Without them, the risk of errors, misunderstandings, increased costs, and delays significantly grows, potentially jeopardizing results.
Clearly set your deliverable expectations, testing priorities, and desired results with your offshore software testing team. Doing so ensures the team understands and aligns their efforts with your project goals. It can also enhance your in-house and offshore team’s productivity, improving the overall relationship in the long run.
Establish a clear workflow
A clear workflow facilitates seamless collaboration between your in-house and offshore teams. One effective approach you can implement is the RACI Matrix, which clarifies roles and responsibilities and ensures accountability and transparency. It can help you streamline workflows, minimize bottlenecks, and improve decision-making processes.
To create a RACI matrix for your software development project, follow these steps:
- List the project tasks or deliverables in the rows of a matrix table.
- Define the project roles based on your requirements. The project roles are as follows:
- Responsible – An individual or a group assigned to complete the task.
- Accountable – A person who reviews the task, delegates it, takes ownership, and signs off on completion.
- Consulted – An individual or a group who provides expertise and input for decision-making.
- Informed – An individual or a group who needs to be informed about successful task completion.
- Allocate the defined roles to the individuals involved in the project, ensuring each has a designated task.
After setting up the RACI matrix, make sure that you get approval from relevant stakeholders to ensure that everyone is informed of their roles.
Be familiar with the overall software testing process
Learn the different phases of software testing, including requirements analysis, test planning, test execution, defect tracking, and reporting. This knowledge allows you to provide guidance, track progress, and identify potential areas of improvement when working with your offshore software testing team.
Being well-versed in the process enables you to communicate effectively with your offshore team. It also helps you situate where the project is along the timeline and aids in decision-making, especially if it encounters snags along the way.
Align your in-house and offshore development teams
Establish communication channels, such as video conferencing and messaging apps or project management tools, to keep you and your offshore software development team on the same page.
For instance, you can virtually meet with your offshore team once a week to discuss updates, clarify requirements, provide feedback, address challenges, and reinforce or change roles. You can also meet them in person to build a better rapport with the team.
On other days, you can create paper trails through email or messaging apps so you and your offshore team have something to look back on when discussing progress, concerns, and plans asynchronously.
Establish overlapping work hours for real-time collaboration
Time zone differences can be a challenge when managing offshore teams. Thus, establish overlapping work hours between your in-house and offshore teams to facilitate real-time collaboration, share updates, address issues promptly, and enhance efficiency.
Let’s say your company is based in Silicon Valley, and you opted for offshore hiring in the Philippines. You can virtually meet your offshore team at 7:00 AM PDT (10:00 PM PHT) or earlier to create a shared time window for direct communication, coordination, and collaboration.
Doing so promotes effective teamwork, minimizes decision-making delays, and fosters unity within the distributed team.
Clarify problem and change management protocols
Challenges and errors are inevitable parts of the software development process. Establishing a process for logging and tracking software issues ensures your offshore team understands how to report and prioritize them.
Similarly, have a change management process to handle any modifications in software development, resolve issues faster, and facilitate efficient decision-making.
Set up proper documentation procedures
Establish and relay standardized documentation procedures—including test plans, test cases, test scripts, and defect reports—to your offshore team to ensure they understand your project format, structure, and expected level of detail.
Effective documentation enhances knowledge sharing, improves collaboration, and enables smoother handoffs between you and your offshore team.
Find Your Ideal Offshore Software Development Team
Successfully managing an offshore software development team requires careful attention to testing and QA practices. You can implement the tips above to enhance the collaboration, efficiency, and quality of your offshore team’s efforts.
Employing the right offshore staff solutions is paramount to your project’s success, and Manila Recruitment can help you in this regard. We can find English-proficient, flexible, and highly skilled software developers and testers who can streamline your processes, fulfill your projects within your set timelines, and reduce costs.
Contact us to find your ideal remote and offshore IT staff.