If you’re looking to learn how to build a QA team from scratch, we have some good news:
You don’t have to!
Advertising QA positions; reviewing CVs and identifying candidates; setting up and conducting interviews; selecting successful applicants; onboarding a new team; purchasing equipment; getting them up to speed on company culture, workflow, processes…
The list goes on, and on. It’s exhausting (and expensive) to build your own in-house QA department – especially when there’s a better way. Hiring a ready-made, experienced offshore QA team.
In this article, you’ll learn:
- The advantages of hiring an offshore QA team
- How to interview & qualify your team
- How to get the most out of your team once they are on board
What Are the Advantages of Hiring an Offshore QA Team?
There are three clear benefits to taking your QA tasks offshore:
- Scale Up (and Down) with Ease
- Recruit Quickly
- Save Time & Money
Let’s take a look at them in more detail.
1. Scale Up (and Down) with Ease
When using an offshore provider, your operations can be scaled to match your specific business needs or opportunities. This gives you access to the same skilled workforce as your larger competitors – and all while reducing the costs and time involved if you were to build a QA team from scratch.
You can also scale down if it becomes apparent that the project requires less testing. Contrast this with hiring an in-house team on a fixed term contract, but not having the necessary volume of work to keep them busy. Going offshore allows you to control your labour budget far more effectively.
2. Recruit Quickly
The speed at which you can build a QA team is enhanced by using an offshore provider. Most offshore QA teams are already working together, and have a proven track record.
You can add them to your project far quicker than it would take to identify, interview, and hire the right candidates for an in-house team.
3. Save Time & Money
Finally, building a successful QA team in-house requires time and money. You need to spend both on recruiting experienced individuals, and you need to attract the right applicants with a competitive salary, benefits and perks – not to mention equipment and office space.
Meanwhile, going offshore saves both time and money. Instead of building your own QA team, you’re hiring a ready-made one with an existing track record. You don’t need to spend as much time on interviews (more on that below), and you don’t need to spend money on salaries and additional overheads. You’ll simply pay a flat fee to your outsourced team, which can be factored into the overall project cost.
How to Interview & Qualify an Offshore QA Team
The hiring process for an offshore QA team shouldn’t be all that different from that of hiring an in-house team. You’ll still have to review the credentials of the provider, conduct interviews, consider personalities and abilities, and make your final decision.
Where it will differ is in the fact that you are appointing an offshore company, rather than interviewing individuals and building your own QA department.
That being said, it’s crucial that you take the time to meet with your prospective offshore team face to face. This will give you the opportunity to discuss your project, observe their workflow, and spend some time in the company of the key people in the organization.
To interview and qualify your offshore QA team, make sure you do the following:
1. Understand their culture
And not just language and custom (although those are important!). You also need to have a grasp on their QA methodologies, and how they align with your software development processes and workflows. If there’s a gap in culture, it will need to be addressed or it could slow (or derail) your project.
2. “Sell” your company
You need to remember that the interview process is a two-way street. You should clarify why an offshore provider should want to work with you in general and on a particular project. While your company may be well known in your own country, that doesn’t mean someone in Ukraine will have heard of it!
3. Manage a quick interview process
A major reason why people take QA offshore is to get to work quickly. A long, drawn out interview process won’t do anyone any favors. Keep your decision cycle as short as possible so that it won’t affect your project deadlines.
4. Maintain your brand reputation
If you’ve decided to appoint a QA team from a shortlist, make sure you take the time to contact the unsuccessful teams and explain your reasons why.
A Few Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your QA Offshore Team
Once you’ve identified and appointed an offshore QA team, you need to manage them effectively. Here are a few tips to help you do just that:
1. Consider the roles and responsibilities of your QA team
This article outlines the typical structure of a quality assurance team. Working with an offshore team requires accurate planning. In general:
- For teams above three, you will need to make someone the point of contact.
- For teams above five, you will need a team lead to oversee everything.
2. Synchronize meeting times
Just because you won’t see your offshore team in person doesn’t mean they should be left in the dark on big decisions. Coordinate meetings that overlap with their time zone to make sure everyone is on the same page.
3. Manage your teams on a single platform
Don’t separate in-house and offshore; streamline communication through one project management platform, and outlaw lengthy email chains!
Create a team spirit
Don’t hold your offshore team at arm’s length. Let them become invested in the project and your brand. Even something as simple as sending them branded t-shirts or stationery will make them feel more involved.
As AppReal QA Team Lead Artem Evgrafov says, “It’s all about establishing a culture of trust in our people, products, and services. We take a top-down approach to empower and engage our employees, ensuring we set and share expectations, and maintain clear lines of communications.”
Artem adds that “providing a solid process for the team is incredibly important. However, you mustn’t forget that what works for team A won’t always work for team B. Be prepared to be flexible and change your process if it’s not working.”
Above all else, the most important thing when working with an offshore provider is to learn, change and adapt!
How AppReal Can Help
Offshore QA in Ukraine offers a unique set of advantages. You can save time, save money, and keep projects on track and bug-free.
At AppReal, we have the know-how to help you build a rockstar offshore QA team.
If you’d like to find out more about our offshore QA services, contact us today to set up a call.