If you are a start-up or an investor you should look at these three Quality metrics. From my experience they will tell you all you need to know before pitching or investing! See how you can make sure that the money will not be spent on nonsensee and use Quality to your adventage…
Would you like to know as an investor that your money will not be spent on nonsense? No one can guarantee that! But you can use Quality to see that you are dealing with a start-up that cares about money… How can Quality help with that? The highest cost for any tech start-up is development cost. And what tells you more about the development process than the product quality? Here are key Quality metrics to look for in a promising start-up and how to read them!
The ratio of bug fixing time to development time gives you an overview of the quality process and an idea about how well the company manages its resources. Of course, this ratio might be high at the early stages as many things are done ad hoc. But at some point, everyone needs to start planning, and that’s the moment when you usually reduce the money spent on your mistakes and bugs. If, after a year start-up still has a high endgame ratio, it probably means that the technical debt will only be growing in the future, and you are looking at a product that will need additional money soon.
The sweet spot would be no more than 20% time spent on bug fixes and redos. 35% is a no go zone, in my opinion. Are there any exceptions? Sure! The most important thing is that the company that tracks this metric can understand it and has a proper plan for reducing development costs with QA and testing.
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It tells how much of the requirements were covered by tests and how many of those requirements are bug-free. Why is it so important? This is actually the only way to tell what has been finished. Don’t rely on some schedules, roadmaps etc. Always ask for this if you want to ensure the state of the development at the moment. This metric tells you that the team broke down the product they are making into smaller pieces and has at least a high-level development plan. It does not have to be perfect; it does not have to be detailed. But you need at least a checklist of things you want to make to verify if they are already finished!
This metric gives you an insight into the capabilities for reporting, planning, and gathering quality metrics. A start-up that measures requirements coverage can accurately track the progress, predict issues and improve the process. What for? To save some money and raise the Quality.
This is not a necessity. In fact, most companies probably don’t have this kind of metric straight away. But thanks to project management tools, it is usually easy to get this metric. Why do I place it among the most important ones for an investor? Bug distribution provides us with a lot of info on how we should prepare and what will be our need for development, additional training, and tool support. Bug distribution by the module will tell us where we have the most work to do and what is potentially the riskiest part of the system.
Bug distribution by type will tell us about functional and non-functional aspects of the product (e.g. security, usability, performance). We can use some models to predict certain product risks and prevent them from happening by taking appropriate actions. Why is this an important matter? Because all of this is a potential cost. You should assess possible risks and costs by looking at various bug distributions.
There are many metrics that we gather during the testing process. These are certainly not all. But throughout my career, I realised that those three metrics give stakeholders the best information and let them decide what to do.
Hope this will help to make a Data-Driven Decision next time you have to analyse a company, or it will let you prepare for your next pitch. I’m sure investors would be delighted if you show them in one slide that you care about their money and don’t want to squander it.