The choice of vendor can be the difference between success and failure for many testing projects, both financially and technically. Understanding key best practices can help you make more informed decisions that will help you choose the testing team that works best for your team. Of course, elements like testing strategy, reputation are some of the most important when it comes to choosing a testing vendor. However, other factors can also contribute to success. If stakeholders use the following criteria as a guide, it is possible to choose the best provider for both the specific testing project and the company as a whole.
When choosing a testing vendor, your short list should consist of a well-established company with enough years in the business to know how to form an effective working relationship. Consider their experience with different testing tools and their ability to perform different types of testing, both for mobile and web. Ideal candidates will be thought leaders who can discuss emerging trends in the market such as the internet of things (IoT), the cloud and more. Their methodology is also an important element: they should be able to tell you whether scrum or agile is the best approach for your project.
Because communication is key for testing, you need to know that they operate in an efficient way. Find out about their internal processes and typical turnaround times. If you are looking for a vendor with complementary services like project management, automation and consulting, consider these elements as well. It should be possible to find a vendor that is a one-stop shop for all the products and services you need. Also be sure that your chosen vendor understands your industry, especially if you work in fields like banking and healthcare that involve complex regulations and IT infrastructures.
Personnel is another important factor to consider. Look for vendors that have experienced, talented teams. Of course, likeability is important as you build a working relationship from the ground up. And don’t underestimate the value of scalability— you need to be sure that your vendor can deploy the right number of testers and tools to accelerate a project without compromising service quality. For projects that involve uncertain requirements and tight timelines, this is even more vital. Look for teams that offer a range of skills and enough flexibility to work with you if the project changes shape.
Of course, outsourcing professional services is never cheap; you get what you pay for. Hiring an amateur with very low rates could end up costing you time and resources down the line. Cost is an important factor, but try not to base your decision solely on that element because you could be ignoring potential business value. Check out this guide for a closer look at how to cost-justify the testing process, and click here to learn about key considerations for outsourcing testing services.
You should also consider the amount of relevance and credibility your potential partners have in the market. This can clue you in on their thought leadership and overall stability. In general, we suggest going for well-established companies over startups because of experience level. Also be sure to check references so that you have an idea of how each candidate delivers on their promises. Any awards the company has received in the industry are also a good sign. Finally, evaluate their client base so you better understand skill level and areas of expertise.
You want to work with a vendor that is truthful and responsible. They should be able to stand behind their decisions and inform you on the best course of action when it comes to their services. Choose a partner that will take responsibility for your projects and deliver stellar outcomes.
Each of these factors can make a big difference in finding the right vendor for your testing projects. If any one of them is ignored, your team runs the risk of poor project outcomes, increased cost and reduced performance. Consider our criteria as a starting point before you begin to ensure you are getting the best value for your money and the right skills for the job.