Please introduce your company and give a brief about your role within the company?
We do outsource testing and quality assurance for IT products. We specialize in all types of testing. We do testing only on real mobile devices and browsers, for this purpose, we have our own mobile farm. Our team consists of highly qualified specialists who work with a large number of various projects. We continuously conduct training and certification of our employees in order to improve the base. The company is more than 10 years old. Management and testing are carried out remotely. The team geography is quite extensive: Russia and European countries. Our employees are not just ordinary testers, they are full-fledged QA specialists who can promptly consult on the product that will be inconvenient for the user or suggest the features to be improved. Our goal is to improve the quality of the IT product, make it as user-friendly as possible and help the client's business strengthen its position in the market.
I am the founder and CEO of Kavichki. Currently, my priority task is management issues and the global development of the company. The rest of the issues concerning cooperation with clients, projects, and team management are handled by the deputy director — Elena Khasanova.
What was the idea behind starting this organization?
I started out as a tester. As a rule, the tester receives few new tasks within the same company and on the same project. That is why I quickly got bored and moved from project to project. As a result, I realized that one can spend time on several projects at once. For this reason, I decided to set up my own business in testing. That is how the company appeared. The idea is that the testers have powerful skills and broaden their horizons through working on various projects. That they do not get bored on one project but try something new. And surely, that they are involved in products that are used by a million people. Actually, that's what happened.
What are your company’s business model–in house team or third party vendors/ outsourcing?
We use the model of presenting an outsourced team for a project. The size of teams can be different: from one tester to help the in-house team, to a full-fledged QA team for the project. It can also be a separate QA lead for a project. We always provide a QA lead with a team of testers.
How is your business model beneficial from a value addition perspective to the clients compared to other companies' models?
In-house testers tend to have a limited set of skills, because they may lack the knowledge required for the project when working on a single project. Plus, outsourcing teams come out cheaper, because unlike in-house testers, payment is made on a project basis.
What industries do you generally cater to? Are your customers repetitive? If yes, what ratio of clients has been repetitive to you?
We work with different sectors: telecommunications, training, insurance, airlines, medical companies. All projects are very different. We are in a long-term relationship with most of our clients. We work with completely different scales from large Federal companies to small agencies. We also work with different markets: Russian, European, Western markets, etc.
Mention the objectives or the parameters critical in determining the time frame of testing an application & website.
The testing period depends on many parameters. And on those ephemeral as complexity. And on those simple as the number of browsers. We have a telegram bot that allows collecting the main parameters for the project in just a few minutes so that it is easier for the manager to make an estimate on time and resources. The bot asks about the testing types, whether testing will be carried out in mobile browsers, whether additional testing is needed after editing errors, etc.
How much effort in terms of time goes into testing the front end and back end of an application & website?
The time efforts spent on testing internal and external components can not be compared. There is no direct correlation for such parameters. The external component can have one button, but there will be a huge machine of microservices inside. Or there may be the opposite situation when the external component is complex and most of the logic is on the side of the external component, while the internal one performs one and a half operations.
Rely on the complexity of the particular component, how many tests one needs to do so that they are necessary and sufficient to cover the functionality? Determine the complexity levels, for example, in points or time. Compare these values, not just the component types.
What are the key parameters to be considered before selecting the right model for testing? Agile Testing or Waterfall Testing. Which testing model do you prefer?
Now it is quite hard to find any specific approach. Obviously, all approaches have shifted to agile, including testing. And it is not surprising that the classic schemes, scrum or lean manufacturing, are used in their pure form almost nowhere. Now it is eclectic: a mixture of different styles and approaches, the main goal of which is to achieve the necessary quality for reasonable resources. One approach may work for one company, and other methods to achieve the goal may work for another company. We prefer to use different approaches for different teams.
Please list some factors which are important while testing a product or service.
Access to the development and management team is required. A tester is someone who asks a lot of questions during their work. It is preferable that there are those who will answer these questions to match expectations and reality. Do not forget about the frieze code during testing, this greatly reduces the risks of the number of missed problems. During testing, pay attention not only to the functionality but also to the user-friendliness — it is now more important than ever.
What are the key factors that you consider before deciding the cost of testing a product or service?
Time is the only factor we focus on. Time is the only resource we sell. The time of a valuable highly-qualified specialist costs a lot, but such a specialist spends less time on testing, and the efficiency of their work is higher.
What kind of payment structure do you follow to bill your clients? Is it Pay per Feature, Fixed Cost, Pay per Milestone (could be in phases, months, versions etc.)
We have two types of payments: hourly and monthly. Everything is simple with the hourly payment: we make a pre-assessment of the work on the project, which we then fit into. The monthly payment is a little more complicated: the tester must have guaranteed employment for a working month. What is important — we always work on a postpaid basis. That is, first we test, showing our competencies, and then we get paid.
Do you take in projects which meet your basic budget requirement? If yes, what is the minimum requirement? If no, on what minimum budget you have worked for?
In fact, we do not have a minimum budget:) That is, there is a minimum hourly cost, which we perform the work for. But it means that the project can be 10 hours long, and we will do it. There is no minimum. Obviously, we will not take on a project for 1 minute:) But we regularly have tasks that are 1 hour long, but usually for our regular customers.
What is the price range (min and max) of the projects that you catered to in 2020?
The minimum cost of the project in 2020 is 12,000 rubles or 162 $. The maximum is just over 1 million rubles or 13,576 $.