Quality assurance (QA) is a key element of project management that takes up during the initial phase before quality control. The main goal of QA is to be process-oriented and focus on preventing product defects.
The difference between Quality Assurance Vs Quality Control is that quality control deals with the management of quality; while quality assurance provides assurance that the product quality requested will be achieved.
Quality assurance in project management is mainly to keep up a standard level of quality in a product or service for an organization or business. A way to form goals, evaluate performance, implement steps to drive better results to prevent heavy costs, better delivery of products, and mitigate risks.
Typically, it performs as a medium that outlines how organizations or businesses guarantee their products or services.
This includes all the procedural measures, standards, and policies that a company must adhere to achieve client and customer satisfaction.
For any project, implementing a quality assurance plan might be unsettling without a definitive guide. With the core quality assurance plan steps below, you can level up a perfect quality assurance plan to achieve your company's quality goals.
Step 1: Determine Quality Standards for your product and customer's needs
Before rushing abruptly into a finished product, visualization of the quality assurance project plan takes into the picture first. Following it, understand the customer requirements to project scope, estimate outcomes, and define the steps to create the objectives.
Once the quality goal is set, understand your customer needs that adhere to any government regulation. On complete review with factors, make sure to follow up with objectives and goals. That the quality standards align with the Specific Measurable Achievable Relevant Time-bound (SMART) approaches.
This way, it will assist to initiate steps to certify that your deliverables, products, or services meet the required standards and serve customers better.
Step 2: Allocate Roles and Tasks
To take up the quality assurance plan format to the next step, segregating team tasks is important and crucial. Various factors like resource count and team size decide the product outcome within time-bound. For instance; an organization with few or a lack of employees might have to cope with additional tasks to current employees and meet the skill set.
Assist and conduct training on scheduled meetings to make sure that the overall team pays equal focus on their roles and activities assigned. It prevents mistakes and resolves errors in the initial part of product development and boosts company goals to meet its customer expectations within the set deadlines.
Project managers can usually use this step to keep track of the activities ongoing and respond to any errors prior.
Suggested Read: Quality Assurance in Six Sigma - Explained
Step 3: Execute the Quality Assurance Plan
This will be a vital stage. Typically, the plan made up for the project must be ready to execute sticking with the quality control policy.
All the staff associated with the project must equally be conscious of their role in the plan pattern. Moreover, organizations should have proper tools and employees to address or fix concerns with the QA program. Anything that is missed out in the execution plan might cause changes in your product review. The best way to deal with such a situation is to have the managers in touch with every team member exposed to the changes, questions, and discussion on new plans.
The QA plan must reach the risk management and product documentation guidelines.
For a quality assurance plan example; in order to fix a defective product, the team members must inspect deliverable peer reviews and conduct the software testing process.
Step 4: Consistent to Examine Results
On keeping the Quality Assurance plan active, take it as a live document that provides outcomes and changes until the project team certifies it for the final stage.
The main purpose of the QA plan should serve in meeting the goals, objectives, and policies. This way, any changes in question by the overall team could be discussed, and it achieves real client expectations.
For examining any results, it’s always best to have meticulous practice with a quality assurance plan sample to understand the product necessity better.
Consider having a work session with a sample model to detail a breakdown of the new changes, major plans, and steps to initiate to get the product done, and discuss the queries in question.
Step 5: Coping with New Requirements and Changes
This is a tricky part of the quality assurance plan document with the plan active. A few weeks or months later on product display, collecting feedback would be a hectic process. But, this works magic.
Such insights drawn from the project enable us to make the version better and take better decisions to brand, create, and market the product as per customer satisfaction.
In turn, your product can improve user experience by applying the changes and updates that situate your client's requirements and needs. Another positive outlook is you make your customers feel valued and help support teams develop their skills.
Step 6: Build Team Engagement
Communication is essential for any project to complete a product. Lack of keeping in the loop with the team causes a gap in knowledge and late exposure to new changes or worse.
This approach is not effective but encourages teamwork across any department involved in product assurance. About 100% of the businesses that have achieved project quality stick to keeping the team in the loop.
Engaging and allocating the teams together towards a shared goal not only improvise socialization but provides higher performance with the working schedules.
Having regular meetings and updates with peers help set expectations by explaining how the project should be focused on and getting the right things done before set deadlines.
Unlike other factors in the quality assurance plan, communication is a must for planning, data collection, quality control, documentation, evaluation, and reporting activities
Know more about Quality Control in Six Sigma
A few elements to include in a quality assurance checklist can be;
- Set up SQA facilitation
- Product and Packaging Requirements
- Implement a quality management process
- Conduct a process review and process training
- Follow a routine calendar
- Create a project report
- Classification of Defects
- On-site checks and tests
- Staff Collaboration
- Review compliance processes
- Pinpoint process improvement areas
- Quality control post-shipment
- Proceeding to monitor quality
Quality Assurance gives you the strategic, tactical, and operational levels to meet customer satisfaction by providing product quality and services.
The escalation and prioritization for quality assurance are even integral with the amount of digitalization and trends following up with product versions better each year. This makes it even more aware to the customers or clients as to what to expect of the best in the product.
And stepping into a product's final stage with a weak quality assurance plan would only encourage more defects and repeated versions of unwanted products. This puts it even more risk in terms of finance and risk factors. Thus, the time taken to create a proper quality assurance plan focused on fulfilling requirements is a must in any product management cycle.
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How to write a quality assurance plan?
Below are the brief methods to create a quality assurance plan;
- Define Quality Objectives
- Assign Roles and Responsibilities
- Execute the Quality Assurance Plan
- Examine Results
- Pinpoint improvement areas
- Team Collaboration and Reporting
What are the 8 principles of quality assurance?
The 8 principles of quality assurance include;
Principle 1: Customer focus
Principle 2: Leadership
Principle 3: People's Involvement
Principle 4: A process approach
Principle 5: Systematic approach to management
Principle 6: Continual improvement
Principle 7: Factual approach to decision making
Principle 8: Mutually beneficial supplier relationship
What are the components of a quality assurance plan?
The components of a quality assurance plan comprise structure evaluation, process evaluation, and outcome evaluation.
What is the main goal of quality assurance?
Quality assurance is an approach to developing products with systematic evaluation of services to guide and prevent poor quality of products or services.
The goal is to identify weaknesses and pinpoint product development processes to prevent defects that may occur during the product development lifecycle.
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