Lifecycle Approach to Software Quality

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University estimate that programmers make between 100 and 150 errors per 1,000 lines of code. And according to the National Institute of Technology, only 70% of all application errors are found in the QA process, leaving the other 30% to be discovered by beta or pilot users. So, perhaps it’s not surprising that, according to Gartner, 40% of unplanned downtime is caused by application errors, which cost businesses an average of $100K per hour.

The impact of application errors is felt by many organizations before the applications are released to production. In its 2004 CHAOS Report, The Standish Group reported that only 29% of all application development projects succeed (delivered on time, on budget, with required features and functions); 53% are challenged (late, over budget, and/or with less than the required features and functions); and a remarkable 18% are considered failed (canceled prior to completion or delivered and never used).

Missed deployment and delivery dates, budget overruns, failure to comply with industry regulations, interrupted work flows, and frustrated customers are the natural byproducts of application flaws. The current approach to resolving application problems and ensuring software quality is simply not getting the job done.

In many organizations, problem resolution remains a cumbersome, manual, error-prone process that extends QA/testing cycles, causes delays in application releases, and is one of the largest culprits for releasing software without its required functions and features.

However, these negative results can be prevented with an effective problem resolution process that leverages best practices, along with new problem resolution technologies, to enhance collaboration between the QA/Testing team – where the problems are found – and the Development team – where the problems are fixed – for significant business gain. In other words, companies need to take a lifecycle approach to ensuring quality.

A white paper at the WebBuyersGuide outlines a holistic approach to optimizing software quality across the application lifecycle. Several case study examples are included to demonstrate how innovative companies have leveraged problem resolution technologies to reduce development and testing costs significantly, and promote quality throughout the application lifecycle.