Test Planning

The Key Beta Objectives for Quality Managers

February 19, 2015

Quality managers can get a lot of value out of the beta phase of product development. It’s a great chance to identify bugs, test a product’s compatibility, and really see how the product fares in the wild. If you’re a quality manager that’s been tasked with running a beta test for your product, you need to decide which objectives you want to focus on in order to bring the most value to your product’s development. Below, we outline the most impactful beta testing objectives for quality managers to help get you started.

Identify Bugs to Improve Quality

Your quality team can’t run tests with every platform, peripheral, or other product that might interact with yours. This means that there are likely numerous undiscovered bugs hiding in your product. Beta testing helps cover those gaps by providing real-world usage in an incredible variety of different environments and scenarios. It’s surprisingly common for beta testers to discover a number of show-stopping bugs that you weren’t able to discover beforehand.

Evaluate the Impact of Known Issues

Often times, you’re aware of existing issues in your product that have yet to be addressed. Beta gives you the chance to see how widespread and problematic those issues are. This will help you gauge the frequency of these problems and prioritize which ones to fix first.

Regression Testing on Solved Issues

Beta tests often focus a portion of tester efforts on ensuring that previously encountered issues have been addressed to their satisfaction, forming a complete “feedback loop” for issues. Beta tests that introduce new features (some of which may have been suggested by testers) can also seek to determine acceptance of these features.

Analyze and Improve Real-World Performance

Many products, especially those which exist in a network environment, are impossible to fully simulate in a test lab environment. Beta testing is a quick and cost-effective way to test your product in thousands of different environments and scenarios to analyze how it’s measuring up compared to its expected performance. It will also help you uncover use cases that weren’t previously considered and tested.

As a quality manager, these objectives will help you design and run a beta test that provides the feedback you need to release a stable and successful final product. If you’re looking for more goals to consider, check out our complete list of beta objectives. Also, keep an eye out for more posts in our beta testing objectives series to see the goals that help other members of the product development team make the most of beta testing. Next time, we’ll be talking about what support managers should expect to focus on during their testing phases.

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