Quality Gates (QGs) are special automatic product quality checks that should set software quality thresholds for the “movement” of code along the virtual software development pipeline. In this article, we analyze Quality Gates as a technique for software quality assurance, and also propose a roadmap to implement them in your software development projects.
Author: Nataliia Syvynska, TestMatick, https://testmatick.com/
The capabilities of quality tates are some kind of help in solving the problems of implementing program code in the early stages of development before the system acquires logical dependencies. If the program code contains a lot of dependencies, the problems with variables become obvious, or checks are missing, the code does not “pass through the gate” and is returned to the developer for revision. The result of such a strategy is the “cleansing” of the program code from bugs, and interaction with it becomes simple and technically convenient.
Why Is It Necessary to Implement Quality Gates on a Project?
- Software testing companies improve the reliability of software products. Each department begins to work according to uniformly approved requirements for the quality of the program code. The employees begin to focus on a common vision of programming styles and methods, and software quality in general. In addition, companies can update product requirements on a centralized basis.
- Software developers completely get rid of routine tasks.
- Test and development teams will be able to operate with automatic reports with the values of base metrics and explanations of why one code is considered good, and another should be changed.
Sample Implementation Plan
To get started, all work with Quality Gates should begin with a static analysis of your code. This method allows eliminating classic and common errors, cleaning the code from the so-called “roughness” and checking for some instructions that could compromise the security.
If the project is long-term, the implementation of the Quality Gates principles can be extended from 3 to 6 months. With such a work plan, the roadmap for automatic code review will look like this:
- Study of the product. Pilot launch. Formation of a vision for the future solution. Basic setup and connection of the server.
- Passage of all parts of the product. Basic run analytics. Refinement and adjustment of ready-made solutions.
- Development of an implementation plan. Evaluation of preliminary results of implementation.
- Expansion of the pilot experience to all departments and involved teams. Creating a dashboard with all analytics and metrics.
- Completion of implementation. Analytics of the received results.
The Best Tools for Quality Gates
Use Trello to link messaging services like Slack for automated updates between teams.
Using Atlassian JIRA, you can integrate your quality gates into a dynamic dashboard to provide your team with more visibility.
Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel are great for creating straightforward quality gate checklists.
A shared workspace with checklists and outlined quality gates can be made using Atlassian Confluence.
Choose a code analysis tool that will fit with your software development language(s), platform and process. Wikipedia offers an extensive list of static analysis tools.
What Conclusions Can Be Reached After the Pilot Run?
- Different project teams form their style of performing tasks – programmers unconsciously create a common approach to developing program code, and in the end, the same shortcomings pop up inside each quality assurance team. The implementation of Quality Gates allows you to solve this problem for all project teams at one time.
- The first results with a lot of mistakes can be demoralizing. It should be understood that you need to focus not on the total amount of defects, but on their technical diversity. The fewer types of bugs, the faster it will be possible to fix everything.
- To fully protect the project, you need some additional web security tools.
Static code analysis is the starting point for implementing Quality Gates. With its help, a quick effect is achieved, and the project team can quickly decide where to go next. General recommendations and rules for software quality allow any project to implement tests based on these rules, to perform their centralized update for all types of tasks (at once).