Outsourcing, Outstaffing and Independent QA: What is the Difference?

In the age of digital transformation, software companies need qualified staff to meet the demands of a dynamic market. However, in-house testing procedures are often rushed due to strict deadlines. Relying on inexperienced software testers limits the scope of testing.

Because of this, in-house teams overlook critical problems, in the beginning, resulting in adverse consequences later. Although the traditional approach to software development favors in-house teams, it is difficult to find a software testing service that meets your needs. Additionally, with the advent of COVID-19, software teams are forced to work remotely.

In such situations, choosing the best QA testing service can become tricky. Software teams have the option of choosing between outsourcing, outstaffing, or hiring independent QA teams. However, for many people, the lines between these testing services are blurred. In this article, we will explain the difference between outsourcing, outstaffing, and independent QA teams, as well as the pros and cons of each service.

Table of Contents

  1. What Is It QA Outsourcing?
  2. QA Software Outsourcing Pros
  3. What You Should Consider Before Outsourcing Software Testing
  4. What Is Outstaffing QA Testing?
  5. QA Software Outstaffing Pros
  6. What You Should Consider Before Outstaffing Software Testing
  7. What is Independent QA Testing?
  8. QA Software Independent Pros
  9. What You Should Consider Before Independent Software Testing
  10. Best Practices for Hiring Third-Party Testing Services
  11. Which Software Testing Service Approach Is the Best?
  12. What Performance Lab Offers

What Is It QA Outsourcing?

Software testing outsourcing mainly describes a situation where companies hire a third-party testing service to handle software testing for a particular project. Here the software team itself only provides the project idea, requirements, as well as their budget. 

In-house development incurs significantly greater cost due to infrastructure, operational, and HR costs. In terms of expertise, start-ups and entrepreneurial mostly have an inexperienced tester who don’t have the relevant knowledge and experience to take care of unforeseen issues during testing. 

Due to their lack of experience, they take more time to understand problems and expend more resources in resolving them. Furthermore, the process of hiring these professionals is a lot more complex and delays the testing procedure considerably.

In contrast, an outsourced testing team is a significantly better choice for your business. These teams have all the necessary tools needed to perform thorough software testing. Therefore, you don’t need to invest extensively in infrastructure and operational costs, and their services have a lower cost overall.

An outsourced testing service excels in terms of expertise, as well. Their technical experience in various fields helps them resolve problems more efficiently and in less time. Furthermore, their knowledge from various fields can assure software quality and help you meet the expectations of your clients.

This is why software outsourcing can be a great advantage for startups. Outsourcing software testing can help businesses focus more on operations and business development rather than worrying about the software. 

application testing outsourcing

QA Software Outsourcing Pros

One of the most obvious advantages of software outsourcing is its cost-effectiveness. An outsourcing testing service will take the bulk of work from your hands by handling full-cycle testing of the project across every stage. As a result, software teams have more time to come up with innovative features rather than stressing about software quality. 

What You Should Consider Before Outsourcing Software Testing 

Delegating testing to an external service provider can fail to work if you don’t have existing checks and balances, as well as a bridge for communication. In the beginning, you must carefully provide all essential requirements related to software testing.

This helps third party services prioritize testing metrics and enhance software quality. You should also remember that an outsourced software testing team may work in different time-zones. This can become an obstacle in communication and collaboration and create unnecessary hurdles in testing. 

What Is Outstaffing QA Testing?

Software outstaffing is in some ways similar to outsourcing since teams hire testing services from outside their company. However, instead of working in different time zones, QA service allows software testing teams to work alongside the in-house development team.

 In outstaffing, teams hire individual testers or testing teams from outside their company to do the work under their guidance. This technique is mostly used by businesses that want faster and more effective experts outside their field of knowledge. 

This technique is ideal for teams that already have a team of in-house experts. Software QA testing can quickly become an overwhelming process; having a dedicated team is not always sufficient to carry out testing. In such situations, software teams need additional resources to complete software testing.

Your experts will work with these teams, manage their workflow and productivity, and assign them tasks. These sorts of testing services are provided by third-parties under an outstaffing contract, where external resources follow the customer’s employment schedule. Therefore, it involves more hands-on management from your end. 

Usually, outstaffing testing services are carried out in two ways depending on the length and complexity of testing in the project. One way is leasing staff, which is ideal for long-term projects. On the other hand, temporary staffing is for short testing endeavors. Here outstaffed employees usually work for a period of 1 week to 3 months. 

QA Software Outstaffing Pros 

Having dedicated software testers in your team enables you to have full control over the testing process. It is up to you how you want to proceed with testing or control costs. You don’t need to define a complete set of requirements in the beginning and you scale the testing service throughout the project depending on your need.

difference between outsourcing

What You Should Consider Before Outstaffing Software Testing 

Outstaffing software testing does not come without its downsides. First, you need experts who are well versed in software testing methodologies. Without them, managing external testing resources will be difficult, resulting in unwarranted delays.

At the same time, outstaffing requires consistent communication and collaboration you’re your dedicated testing team. Therefore, if they are working remotely, your testing experts can fail to handle them effectively. Although outstaffing is ideal for teams who want greater control over the testing process, it also demands additional effort from your team.

What is Independent QA Testing?

Sometimes, hosting an in-house QA testing team isn’t feasible, In such situations, teams have to consider hiring a dedicated team of testers outside of their company. Although using completely independent QA teams seems peculiar, it is a great technique to reduce the price and risk associated with an inflated number of employees. 

An independent QA testing service gives your team a fully functional and dedicated testing resource without the costs of hiring, and retaining employees. Such a testing service can be hugely beneficial for a software team if the testing resources are not involved in any other testing project. An independent QA testing service allows software teams to enjoy greater collaboration and communication.

QA Software Independent Pros

An autonomous testing team can work in a more focused manner compared to testing teams with extensive cross-collaboration. Therefore, the testing service can transparently implement testing procedures and grant software teams greater time to market for their product.

Since the testing team operates independently, it has complete control over the project delivery. This means they can work with minimal external pressures, uncover performance issues in detail and streamline the application’s workflow.

What You Should Consider Before Independent Software Testing 

Granting a high degree of autonomy to testing services can be both rewarding and highly risky, depending on which service you trust. Although testing teams with extensive experience and expertise perform best with independent teams, inexperienced testing resources can fail badly without explicit guidance. 

Best Practices for Hiring Third-Party Testing Services

Hiring third-party testing is necessary for making most of the expertise available in the market. However, not every software testing service offers the same kind of reliable testing you would expect.

On the contrary, choosing the wrong testing service can harm your business instead of helping it. This is why you must consider the following factors before choosing an outsourced software testing service.

Choose Partners with Established Technology Frameworks and Best Practices

Software teams should first ask testing teams what unique intellectual property and best practices can they implement in your project. Unless a team has significant experience in resolving testing anomalies, utilizing a set of best practices, methodologies, and tool kits, they can’t help you improve the quality of the product while increasing the time to market.

Usage of Agile

Agile software testing practices provides a well-documented and understood approach to software testing. However, several companies fail to fully integrate testing and quality into software delivery.

This is why it’s essential to consider the adoption of Agile procedures during testing. Furthermore, if your development team is already following the Agile Methodology, then testing service can fail at providing testing promptly.

Achieve Cultural Compatibility and Create Engagement Strategy

Before you consider third-party testing services, it’s essential to consider your business strategy and model. Both of these things need to be in-line with the third-party service you are going for. The third-party testing company may incrementally provide its services or perform testing collectively.

You need to evaluate your project needs and choose an engagement strategy that can work in sync with your requirements. For instance, if your business needs to deliver software components incrementally, then the application testing must be implemented in the same manner.

Consider Testing Experience in the Industry

Oftentimes, testing services don’t have the technical experience to back up their expertise. As a result, their inexperience in software testing causes them to overlook certain issues. Ultimately, trusting these services bears a greater risk of software failure.

Software failure is detrimental to any business. It can cause interrupt the business workflow, cause downtime, or cause faulty transactions that hurt the business financially. The Tech Republic reported that software failures caused an estimated loss of approximately $1.7 trillion in the fiscal year of 2017.

This is why it is necessary to make sure that the software testing service is proficient and has relevant experience. At the same time, you should consider the company’s portfolio and look at how they performed in a similar project. Looking at these factors can give you a fair idea of their experience in a given scenario.

Remember That Cheaper Is Not Better

It’s tempting for software teams to choose testing services based on how low their service charges are compared to industry standards. However, doing so without considering the testing service’s experience comes at the cost of your product’s quality.

Instead of identifying and eliminating all errors and bugs in your product successfully, inexperienced testing can introduce new problems to the application. Relying on a testing service with relatively low technical experience defeats the purpose of choosing a third-party testing service.

The initial lower cost will not benefit you when the project is prolonged due to overlooked errors in the software. Instead, your overall costs will increase with time, and it can end up costing more than it should.

software testing outsourcing

Which Software Testing Service Approach Is the Best?

Choosing a third-party software testing service depends mostly on what you want to achieve in terms of quality, the budget, as well as the length of the project. If your organization lacks an in-house software testing team entirely, then it’s best to consider experienced independent QA teams.

Likewise, if you are acquiring software testing services on a project-to-project basis and have some testing professionals then outsourcing testing services might be the best option. Lastly, if your company has QA professionals with a broad understanding of QA & software testing and you seek greater control over the testing procedure, then outstaffing might be the best for you.

What Performance Lab Offers 

In a post-pandemic world, organizing software testing teams and evaluating their performance on merit is difficult. Teams find it increasingly harder to communicate remotely and collaborate testing services effectively. 

In such uncertain times, only experienced software testing services have the knowledge to identify vulnerabilities accurately. Here at Performance Labs, we are committed to providing you the best quality of software testing.

With our experienced and dedicated team of 400 testing specialists, we can ensure that your software performs at its maximum capacity and delivers all functionalities needed by your customer. Our expertise enables us to deliver software testing outsourcing, outstaffing testing, as well as independent QA teams.

If you’re interested, you can learn more about our services by visiting our website.

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