Deming's Pdca Cycle Research Paper

Pages: 6 (2008 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 5  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Business - Management

Applying Deming's PDCA Cycle to Software Q.A.

Applying Deming's PDCA Model to Software Testing as a Service

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Applying Deming's PDCA Model to Software Testing as a Service

Cloud computing is a revolutionary force in the development of programming, testing, software quality management and deployment technologies, with the greatest potential contributions in application testing and validation. The current software quality management processes that are predicated on Six Sigma methodologies are delivering higher levels of quality in enterprise applications, improved by the integration of Deming's PDCA processes within their broader workflows (Jones, Parast, Adams, 2010). Cloud computing technologies show potential to reduce software testing cycles and improve quality to a level not seen in previous testing and quality management approaches (Zultner, 1988). The intent of this analysis is to evaluate how the Deming PDCA Model can be applied to software testing methodologies at the organizational, project and individual level, all supporting a higher level of software quality being produced.

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Research Paper on Deming's Pdca Cycle Assignment

The PDCA Model's steps of Plan-Do-Act-Check have been used in traditional Information Technologies (IT) projects and programs for projects, with mixed results given the inconsistencies of implementation (Marchewka, 2007). The PDCA Model has also been effectively used for streamlining and completing quality management of manufacturing-based IT systems as well (Ivanovic, Majstorovic, 2006). The Model is ideally suited for the many parallel processes in the software development process and when deployment on a SaaS-based platform, would be orders of magnitude more scalable and capable of supporting more testing and verification sequences (Yang, Onita, Zhang, Dhaliwal, 2010). Of the several approaches of integrating the PDCA Model into the software quality management and testing methodologies in use today (Ivanovic, Majstorovic, 2006) (Yilmaz, Chatterjee, 1997) using the Deming PDCA Model in the context of a hosted testing service could increase the accuracy and productivity of application testing for globally-deployed Web applications (Yang, Onita, Zhang, Dhaliwal, 2010). The time and cost constraints on the development of Web-based, global applications is straining the existing PDCA-based approach to software quality management, analysis and release criterion (Pittman, Russell, 1998). This in turn leads to applications that are needed by enterprises on a global basis being slowed down in their delivery cycles, in some cases leading to a reduction in enterprise revenue. The reliance on traditional PDCA-based approaches for Web application testing of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) applications and platforms has often been delayed in deployment due to the need for greater testing accuracy (Marchewka, 2007). Integrating the PDCA Model into Software Testing as a Service at the organizational, project and individual is the intent of this analysis.

Integration of PDCA Model To Software Testing at the Organizational Level

The use of the PDCA methodology and frameworks to streamline software testing and validation at the organizational level needs to anticipate resistance to change, plan for precise resource allocation, and set strategic objectives if it is to be successful (Watson, DeYong, 2010). All of these factors together must be incorproated into the PDCA cycle of software development and engineering at the strategic planning and IT planning level first if they are to be successful. Beginning with the Planning aspects of the PDCA cycle, software development teams need to first define the core set of business and technical requirements for a new enterprise software application, the continually test its core components as each is completed over time. Only after taking the Plan segment of the PDCA cycle and applying it to the component level of software can a level of product quality and assurance be assured. The integration of the Plan component as part of the overall testing methodology within a hosted environment is key to its success over time as well. The value of having the Plan component of the PDCA cycle integrated into a Testing as a Service quality management system is that baseline or benchmarks can be made over time, measuring progress towards software application quality. At the organizational level, integrating the Plan component also includes creating analysis frameworks to measure as-is vs. to-be metrics of performance in addition to defining data collection and analysis routines to better capture variations in preliminary actual results to plan. The intent of integrating the Plan phase of the PDCA Model into Software Testing as a Service is to allow provide real-time data analysis and insights into which aspects of the software development program are progressing well and which are not.

Creating a series of metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) for use in the Plan stage of the PDCA model also ensures the strategic direction of a software applications' development continues on course. The organization of these metrics and KPIs can also lead to a more streamlined approach to integrating testing and validation into a Cloud-based services as well (Yang, Onita, Zhang, Dhaliwal, 2010). It is imperative for the metrics and KPIs be captured and formatted in such a way as to provide a solid foundation for Six Sigma analysis later in the PDCA cycle of software validation and analysis (Jones, Parast, Adams, 2010). The Plan aspects of the PDCA integration into organizational strategies also needs to include support for project planning and program management to ensure its success over the long-term as well (Zultner, 1988).

From an organizational standpoint, the Do stage is one where the strategic plan is broken into a series of process steps and programming routines until the entire project is complete. This aspect of the Do stage is most focused on tracking performance to plan and how effectively the software being produced matches its original specifications. Integrating Testing as a Service into this stage of the PDCA cycle at the organizational level requires greater focus on creating a multi-tenant platform for ensuring each area or group in a development organization has access to the project management, testing, benchmark and Six Sigma applications needed to troubleshoot and solve software quality issues as the application is being produced. The greatest benefit of integrating the PDCA cycle into a Software testing as a Service platform is the opportunity to have the Do step of the model be global in scope, in real-time. No longer needed to have the actual programming and testing be serially based and constrained by geographies and time zone differences, software development teams can continually make progress to creating new applications. The greatest benefit of integrating the PDCA cycle into a Cloud-based architecture is the flexibility of having a multi-site, truly global development and testing platform Yang, Onita, Zhang, Dhaliwal, 2010). Based on insights gained from the analytics used in each of the PDCA cycles at the organizational level, strategic planning and the allocation of IT resources over time can be made more efficient and focused on results as well.

Integration of PDCA Model To Software Testing at the Project Level

The integration of the PDCA cycle at the project level also shows significant potential to increase software quality levels and also provide acceleration of programming efforts (Ivanovic, Majstorovic, 2006). Beginning with the Plan aspect of the PDCA model and its integration into a Cloud-based platform at the project level, software development teams could use the online benchmarks and scorecards to better understand which areas of their code was of the highest quality, and which needed the most modification (Marchewka, 2007). At the project level, the integration of the PDCA cycle into Software testing as a Service also sets the foundation fro a new series of metrics called TESTQUAL (Yang, Onita, Zhang, Dhaliwal, 2010). The intent of TESTQUAL is to quantify the functionality, reliability, usability, efficiency, maintainability and portability of software quality assurance and testing programs (Yang, Onita, Zhang, Dhaliwal, 2010).

TESTQUAL has the potential to streamline PDCA cycles at the project level by providing a series of quantitative and qualitative benchmarks that can be used to track project performance over time. Integrating the PDCA cycles into project-based Testing as a Service platforms can also be fine-tuned using the specific insights gained from using TESTQUAL as well, specifically focusing on functionality and portability. The contributions of the PDCA cycle into higher levels of software quality can therefore be attained with greater accuracy and precision with the use of the TESTQUAL metrics (Yang, Onita, Zhang, Dhaliwal, 2010).

Integration of PDCA Model To Software Testing at the Individual Level

The PDCA cycle's integration into a Cloud-based Software testing as a Service platform would significantly improve the speed of individualized code testing and software quality assurance by providing quality assurance (Q.A.) engineers with the flexibility to run tests on their code at any time. The combining of the PDCA cycle as a methodology on the Software Testing as a Service platform would give individual QA teams greater autonomy in auditing, checking and correcting programming code on their own. This would also give individualized teams globally greater flexibility in solving complex software Q.A problem in code rather than waiting for centralized Q.A. To finish all testing (Yilmaz, Chatterjee, 1997).The payoff of integrating PDCA cycles into a Testing as a Service platform is greatest for globally-deployed project teams… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Deming's Pdca Cycle" Research Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Deming's Pdca Cycle.  (2011, November 12).  Retrieved October 24, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Deming's Pdca Cycle."  12 November 2011.  Web.  24 October 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Deming's Pdca Cycle."  November 12, 2011.  Accessed October 24, 2020.