A quality assurance procedure is a step-by-step method use to ensure that standards are met. This, of course, assumes that you have a set of standards to begin with. A standard is a requirement of a product or process.
For example: 100 percent of the functionality of all deliverables must be tested.
So, the first task is to establish a set of standards, then build a quality assurance procedure to ensure adherence to those standards. As in all other quality assurance initiatives, the establishment and implementation of standards requires the support of senior management with input and guidance from the quality assurance team.
Standards define the “what” of software development, i.e., the rules that must be followed for the successful creation and delivery of the product. A standard must be measureable, attainable, and necessary.
Here are some sample standards that might apply to the creation of a software product:
100 percent of the product functionality must be tested prior to delivery
each unit of data referenced in the requirements specification must be described in the data dictionary
the response time for a user-request must not exceed 3 seconds
Each standard must then have an associated QA procedure to insure adherence. For example:
test all functionality of the deliverable per the standard test plan and all associated test scripts
insure that all references to data in transaction files and database fields have a corresponding entry in the data dictionary
per the test plan and detailed test scripts, test transaction response times and provide proof of the 3 second compliance.
These are just a few simple examples of standards and each associated quality assurance procedure. There would obviously be many standards and procedures associated with each software deliverable.
As always, there is quite a bit of time, money, and effort involved in the creation of these procedures. That means that you will have to allocate the required time and resources necessary to make them a reality.