Published: 18 Jun 2018
How Can a QA Team Efficiently Support the UAT Process
Last Updated: 01 Sep 2023
User acceptance testing (UAT) is the most crucial phase in the software development lifecycle. Uat testing ensures the new system or uat defect management process meets the user requirements. It is crucial to get the application through the user acceptance tests as it is the last quality gate validates product quality, accuracy, and compliance before its deployment into production.
1. Objectives of UAT testing
2. Role of QA Teams in User Acceptance Testing
3. What are the different types of User acceptance testing (UAT)?
4. Tasks Performed By the QA Team for a Successful UAT Process
5. What are the tips QA teams should follow while practicing UAT?
6. How is UAT different from other levels of testing?
A successful UAT is crucial for deploying systems with no errors and business risks. However, implementing UAT in an agile environment might lead to frequent and reduced cycles of testing. This mandates the testers to develop skills of optimized testing techniques, automation and work in collaboration with the development and QA teams.
Therefore, a user acceptance test is an important and final phase to test business processes executed in the application or software finally.
Objectives of UAT testing (User Acceptance Testing) :
- Verify system set-up for transactions and user access
- Confirm use of system in executing business processes
- Validate performance on business-critical functions
- Verify integrity of converted and additional data
- Evaluate and sign off go-live readiness
Each user acceptance test differs depending on which business process is being tested. At-large, however, UAT testing will involve these activities:
Role of QA Teams in UAT testing (User Acceptance Testing)
User Acceptance Testing is generally a “black box” testing. In other terms, the emphasis is on the functionality and the usability of the application rather than the technical aspects. The User Acceptance Testing is the last Quality Assurance effort before the release of the application. It is carried out in an environment that closely resembles the real world or production environment.
In most organizations, user acceptance testing is carried out by business users. It represents a cross-section of users to test the new application using real-world scenarios. As this testing is a fundamental check of software quality, special care must be given to establishing a proper UAT testing environment and approach.
Every organization yearns to deliver products and services that are of the best quality. To ensure that the product is of the best quality and meets customer standards, Quality Assurance (QA) function comes into perspective. Through the implementation of QA, review processes are organized and the best testing practices are applied for determining the quality of a product.
QA is a key function that helps organizations build better products. There are many organizations who are also interested to utilize the potential of User Acceptance Testing (UAT). This testing method is performed to get valuable feedback from the product owners and the customers, and this software testing method is performed to ensure that the functionality, scalability, quality and security of a particular product (or) service are in-line with the customer expectations.
The key question to ponder upon is why organizations want to leverage QA and invest their resources and time in UAT?
Before understanding the role of QA teams in UAT testing, let’s first understand the effective individual contribution that QA teams and UAT provide to an organization.
The significance of QA teams:
When an organization makes a strategic move by embracing the QA function, specific tools, processes, resources and controls are integrated to maximize their effectiveness. Through this integration, a thorough review check of a product or system is evaluated, which helps in finding defects, design and functionality issues.
The QA team prepares in-depth documentation that covers the specific tools, processes, structure and best practices for developing a product that is rich in quality. The QA manager steps in to track the progress of product development and then utilizes testing methods for resolving the functionality issues.
The necessity of UAT:
UAT method finds what exactly the customer expects from the product by taking their valuable feedback. Customers act like a feedback support group that provide their feedback for improving the functionality and user experience of the developed product. Typically, UAT is the last phase of software testing wherein the product owner or the customers test the developed product in real-time and provide their valuable suggestions to the teams. The teams in turn look at their feedback and take up actions accordingly.
The role of QA teams in UAT:
– UAT focuses on developing the best quality product by taking in constant feedbacks from the customers. QA teams must ensure that the testing methods are strategically executed to not only improve the quality and usability of the product but also to make it customer-friendly
– QA teams streamline the testing process in such a way that the outcome of UAT is much better, thereby leveraging the UAT implementation process effectively
– QA teams work on iterating the product functions in terms of improving the quality and efficiency of a product, through inspections and process checklists. Through this on-going activity, UAT can improvise its testing processes and thus contribute to developing a product of high quality.
If we talk about the bigger picture of quality initiatives, user acceptance testing is an important element in any Quality Assurance program. To get the optimum results from this type of testing process, it is advisable to designate the task to an experienced QA team.
What are the different types of User acceptance testing (UAT)?
Compliance/Regulation Acceptance Testing:
In this type of software testing, the developed software is tested against some regulations and rules to check whether the software is meeting the required requirements or not.
Alpha and Beta Testing:
Before the product or the software is planned for a release, the alpha testing and beta testing methods are taken up. Generally, alpha testing is performed in the development environment and beta testing is performed in the customer’s environment. Based on the feedback received, the development teams fix the issues to improve product usability with alpha testing; and the feedback from beta testing helps in overall product improvement.
Operational Acceptance Testing:
This testing practice is also known as production acceptance testing. It helps to verify whether the workflows that are used by the software system are maintained properly or not.
Contract Acceptance Testing:
This type of testing is performed on the developed software programs. It helps to check whether the developed software can meet the pre-defined criteria or the specifications that are agreed within the contract.
Black box Testing:
This type of testing can be performed as user acceptance testing or functional testing. In this type of testing, system functionalities are analysed without allowing the testers to check the internal code structure.
Tasks Performed By the QA Team for a Successful UAT Process
1. Setting up tools – Test data and defect management tools
2. Setting up roles and responsibilities of business users in the tools
3. Developing test cases and user acceptance testing Runbook
4. Setting up Test Data in the test environment
5. Training business users on how to execute Test Cases and log defects
6. Retesting and regression testing of defects found during UAT
What are the tips QA teams should follow while practicing UAT testing ?
Understand user expectations:
While performing this testing, it is essential to perform tests by considering multiple factors to meet and understand user expectations. Also, it is important to verify whether the product has met the requirements and expectations of the target audience.
Test on real-world connection factors:
During the practice of User acceptance testing, along with the practice of verifying user requirements, it is crucial to test user acceptance with the usage of real-world connections. Testing on real-world conditions will help to validate the product performance and enhances the test results by finding out the issues or errors. Hence, to meet the user standards, considering real-world scenarios is important.
Prepare to test in advance:
Usually, in the development cycle, User acceptance testing is considered to be conducted before the product is being launched. Planning the user-experience test at the end of the development cycle can create hurdles and may cost expensive to solve the errors. To avoid such scenarios, it is important to plan UAT in advance. This will help to make the process flow faster and helps to recreate a test plan another test plan if the earlier plan fails.
Setup testing throughout the project:
While practicing UAT for a product, it is very important to carry out user acceptance based testing throughout the cycle. When this testing is performed at the final stage, it will be difficult to find and fix the errors in a limited period. This will create a bad impact and adversely damage the overall user acceptance. Therefore, to avoid such situations, it is crucial for enterprises to adopt the practice of User acceptance based testing throughout the process. This will simplify the way to maintain quality apps from the initial stage itself.
Review the test plans regularly:
When practicing testing, along with UAT errors, it is even important to validate the user acceptance checklist by the user acceptance based testing team or from a knowledgeable QA team member. In order to achieve the best results from the testing plans, it is crucial to validate and review the test plans regularly. In addition to this, it is even essential to re-verify feedback and UX tools that are being used to >perform the tests.
Maintain a structured UAT management system:
To achieve the best results, enterprises should choose the right automation tools for achieving the perfect outcomes. Hence, while selecting a tool, enterprises have to look at various factors. The tool should be capable of team collaboration and have features such as tracking the bugs, efficient dashboards, filtering options, security, etc.
How is UAT testing different from other levels of testing?
-While performing this type of testing, instead of finding defects, the main focus should be on verifying whether the system or the software or the application is as per the specific user context or not
-In this testing, it is essential to involve users as they play a great role in UAT testing and designing. As they understand the real-world conditions, they are good to state where the app can excel and fail during the real usage
-For User acceptance testing, visual evaluation is a major need to evaluate a test case. This can be achieved when the tests are performed manually. Another benefit by including more number of manual UAT testing is that it can help in receiving more return on investment
An application is considered to be infallible once it passes the quality assurance test. However, User Acceptance Testing has an equal and major role to play. Quality assurance testing tests a software solution in a defined environment; which might catch any technical faults. This testing provides the beneficial role of certifying that the product actually works appropriately on the field. Hence, it often has a different focus from quality assurance, as the emphasis is more towards validating business requirements than technical implementation.
Generally, UAT testing is performed by business users who lack basic testing knowledge. Businesses that have suffered huge losses due to post-release issues, know the significance of successful User Acceptance Testing. The cost of fixing defects after its release is way greater than fixing it before. Hence, outsourcing this process to an experienced software testing provider can help organizations to release a foolproof application to the market.
TestingXperts, with its comprehensive QA and software testing experience, has domain SMEs capable of providing user acceptance testing solutions to the clients. Also, we have a specific training program for the business users for helping them in setting up the process efficiently. Connect with us to know more on how we can collaborate with your teams to help them build an efficient UAT testing process.
Related Queries on UAT Testing
What is UAT Testing?
User acceptance testing is the most crucial phase in the software development lifecycle. It ensures the new system or process meets the user requirements.
What comes before UAT testing?
UAT testing is the final phase of testing performed once the functional, system and regression testing are completed.
How do you conduct a UAT Test?
Usually, in the development cycle, UAT is considered to be conducted before the product is being launched.
Who is responsible for UAT testing?
UAT testing is an important element in any Quality Assurance program and is performed by the QA team.