Quality Assurance (QA)

QSI has core competencies and experience in performing QA, QC and IV&V activities. Our QA process and methodologies are derived from years of practical experience coupled with the ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System (QMS) standards and the various IEEE standards (IEEE Std 1012-1998 Standard for Software Verification and Validation,IEEE 1012, IEEE 1059, IEEE 12207, and others). Our processes are oriented to both process and end product oversight and verification. Our process engineering focus identified inefficiencies and non compliant process in the manufacturing, and also IT systems and software development (SDLC) projects. Our focus is not only the assurance that things are being done correctly (per contract specifications, industry best practices, and IEEE, DoD, CMMI and ISO standards), but also where cost savings and efficiencies can be realized.

The four processes that make up our core approach are 1) discovery, 2) planning, 3) execution, and 4) reporting.


1) Discovery

The QSI discovery phase is the first step in the initial project startup, and then is a monthly, iterative process of our core process phases. During the initial discovery phase, QSI will review the project documentation (including project plans and functional and technical documents) then with closely with the Navy and Marine Corps project representatives to perform risk identification, criticality assessments, and scaling factors, and we will jointly work with the Navy or Marine Corps to update the risk and criticality scaling. We then prioritize our activities to the high risk, and high criticality aspects of the project, or processes. We then develop specific risk mitigation strategies. These strategies will become the basis for the specific activities.


2) Planning

The planning phase is triggered by the completion of discovery phase activities. It is during this phase that the approach detailed in our QA/IV&V/oversight proposal is merged with program, project, and risk assessment results, known schedules, and Navy or Marine Corps defined requirements to establish plans for execution.


The program and project plan establishes how QSI will manage and execute the QA/IV&V/project oversight effort in the context of both QSI’s ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System and the Navy or Marine Crops contractor environment. This plan addresses the QSI program structure, management approach, and technical approach, including contract management, project planning, project monitoring, task management, staffing (including the use of subject matter experts and additional staff responding to surge periods), communication, risk management, quality assurance, data management, tools, metrics, continuous improvement, training, and security.


3) Execution

Once we have completed the initial discovery phase and used the output from those activities to adjust the initial project plans in the program and project planning phase, we will then move to the execution phase. The execution phase is the phase where the bulk of the QA/IV&V and oversight activities are performed. The execution phase has four components that make up the overall approach and methodology. The four components are:

1.    Measurement

2.    Decision support aids

3.    Tools

4.    Internal oversight

5.    Independent assessments.


4) Reporting

A key component to the success of any QA/IV&V and oversight project is the communication of the findings, risks, issues, and recommendations. QSI will be using two methods of reporting to include quantitative and qualitative reporting. Supporting our reporting is a communications plan, which is developed in conjunction with the Navy or Marine Corps project and steering committee input.


Our qualitative reporting will involve the development of summary reports, graphs, and charts (including stoplight executive summaries), as well as development of formal presentations (PowerPoint). This reporting will be important in effectively disseminating the overall status and health of the project to the various stakeholders groups (steering committee, CIO, and other organization and agencies as directed by the Navy or Marine Corps).


The quantitative reporting will contain our project metrics. These data will represent the measurements and findings observed during the critical QA/IV&V and oversight activities. We will capture the metrics and summarize those in reports (often tabular), in order to support our summarization reports and briefings. Additionally, the data will be considered project legacy data and will remain in the project library.