Onshore vs. Offshore Software Testing

Last updated on April 7th, 2024 at 10:08 am

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In the current times, firms are depending more on the colocation of their testing teams. But does it mean that their lack of resources for relocation leads to testing inefficiency? This is a deep-rooted question of whether an organization can depend on an offshore software development team or a distributed in-house team, that is most commonly available in organizations. There are various advantages and disadvantages of having remote working teams for QA projects. Firms can either achieve their aim successfully with this approach or may even fail, yet there are more advantages when it comes to having a remote QA team especially in desperate times like COVID-19, where social distancing needs to be practiced as advised by the governments.

Although the benefits of cost-efficiency in working with remote works, yet many organizations fail to achieve the true offshore testing model that they need to implement. With the help of offshore testing services, there can be different aspects of software testing. However, there are additional costs associated with work inefficiency that go along with any remote working arrangement. Turnaround time and time zone issues are a few drawbacks to go offshore. As long as companies compare the entire package, and consider these costs into account, they can make better decisions about whether the offshoring model works for testing. 

Organizations work with offshore testing companies to create a true value arrangement where secure data needs and similar tests occur onshore while other activities can be moved to offshore. This can also work for usability testing with testers who may have relevant context for the applications that are being tested onshore. While it is important to accept that with the labor cost that is associated with offshore rates, factors like miscommunication, time change, and work schedule adjustments have a huge impact and are included in the hidden costs of the offshore services. The real cost is not negative, just an input variable into the decision.  

Difference between remote and offshore testing

It does not usually matter where QA professionals are located especially when the team members are not in the same place physically. However, it is important to recognize that remote work and offshore models are different. Most of the time, there is a difference between a professional QA expert and the typical offshore who graduated to pursue a career in engineering and development and was assigned to a QA team. Remote working allows QA teams to perform their testing from outside the office, provided they have secure setups for the teams. Offshore teams may work remotely, however, they still rely on working out of large technology centres. If they are unable to work there, they cannot offer the ssame level of productivity, security, reliability and accountability that an offshore testing team can. 

It is equally important to categorize and differentiate between the types of QA and software testing that are commoditized. Testing types such as usability testing may be an ideal solution for remote working. There is more access to a wide range of environments, devices, networks and user behaviors with geographically diverse testers. 

Testers should be encouraged to embrace their responsibility 

Whether it is integration testing, load testing or regression testing, having a full time onsite team comes with its own benefits and costs. Accountability is a major advantage that stands out from the rest. It is difficult for a tester to claim deniability or that they were not aware of the non-technical issues outside their zone of focus when they work in the same room with the rest of their team members. However, testers need to step out of their routine tasks of test script execution and be responsible for the quality of the app they are testing. This should not be the case when it comes to offshore testing services. This one just follows the test script should never be the fallback position for any professional in the software industry. Whether they need to wrk onsite, or remotely, they should take the responsibility for doing everything that they can to find the areas that are not being addressed for now. As we have discussed above, this is one of the most convenient ways to ensure quality apps and how QA professionals can add value to an organization.  Experienced QA experts can ensure that they focus on the quality aspects of their products no matter which model they use, whether it is onshore or offshore models, they know how to keep their QA at the top. 

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