QA Or Testing

QA or Testing – what do I need?

Quite oft I experience that people have no idea what is/does QA and what is/does software testing. Even if they work in software development company. During last 20 years both terms has been mixed up and used as synonyms, to make it clear, here are my definitions:

Software testing (ST)

ST is an investigation process, during which tester collects information about a test object and its behaviour under specific conditions with specific method, approach and type.

For example, during performance testing, tester observes how a test object performs in terms of responsiveness and stability under a certain workload.

Quality Assurance (QA)

QA specialists examine whole software development process and implement policies and procedures to prevent defects from occurring in a software. It implicates and  includes following processes: requirements definition, software design, coding, source code control, code reviews, software configuration management, testing, release management, and product integration.

Summary

ST looks for a defects in a software, but QA is a set of actions to prevent a defects there in the first place.