A 6-Step Guide To Handle Client Calls Effectively as a QA Team Member

The last thing that we do on any day in most projects and companies is making it through the client calls.

Client calls are an integral and important part of how work gets coordinated and communication channels are kept open in IT teams.

Client calls are fun when they are short and the tasks are on track and the client’s expectations are met. When that’s not the case, client calls can lead to lot of anxiety, angst, disappointment and demotivation.

What can we do to help ourselves in this context?

Good communication skills, language and accent expertise, positive attitude where we take blame when due, engaging with the client on a personal level, saying ‘yes’- are a few things that can help, but unfortunately, that’s not enough.

What more do we need then?

That is exactly where this article comes in handy. This is our attempt to outline the many stages where client interaction takes place in a QA Project and a few tips in each one that can help.

Also read => How Important is it for a Tester or Developer to Communicate with Each Other?

What You Will Learn:

#1) Client call during requirement analysis

Once software requirements document for a new project to test is handed over, we have got to be thorough in understanding all the implicit and explicit areas of the software. This phase needs a good quality client call for clarifications and to enhance our interpretation of the product.

Read more => How to test requirements documents

A few aspects to keep in mind:

#2) Client calls during Test planning:

After the client’s go-ahead on the test plan, QA teams usually use their test plan template to create a test plan within the time limit set by the client and send for review.

There might be a call at this stage for feedback and these are the things to take care of:

#3) Client calls during traceability matrix creation

For projects following forward traceability, we move on to dividing requirements into smaller functionalities with all possible scenarios and create traceability matrix after the test plan is done. This is usually reviewed by client so they can check the coverage and provide their approval on it, and we can move on.



The following points are to be noted to make this interaction simpler:

#4) Client calls during Test scripting

This phase is longer than the last ones and client calls can be more intense.

These points can help:

#5) Client call during script execution and defect logging

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For this phase to be effective, we have to meet the estimated time lines and the quality of the report that communicates it has to be excellent and correct.

Read more => Test execution process

 Note – Sometimes we may have many scripts fail. And client may not feel good about this. Although it’s not our fault, execute test cases as normal (if possible, more) to keep on track and compensate poor quality with progress.

Read also => How to Write Effective Emails to QA (or any) Team

#6) Client call during UAT / after release / in production

One final tip is: Ask for feedback. If you have followed a practice, ask the client if it was helpful to make sure that you we are involving the client on deciding what works best.

Conclusion

Perfecting the client-team communication is a hard balance to achieve, but with few simple steps we can get there and make progress.

The above points are time tested and have been practically implemented, so we know that these work.

Please let us know if you have any other tips and tricks up your sleeve.

As always, we would love to hear from you. Please comment or post questions below.