"Testing, Testing" - EngageUAT Blog

Why do User Acceptance Testing?

Colin Robertson on May 19, 2014

It’s that final step.  The project is almost complete and it’s time to do testing.  As you know, there are many steps to the testing process and one that is missed all too often is one of the most crucial - User Acceptance Testing (UAT).

What is UAT?

UAT is an often overlooked part of the testing process where your users put the product to the test to make sure that it does the job in a real-world atmosphere. Unlike system testing - which ensures that the system itself works - UAT determines whether that system meets the business needs that it was intended for. Although this can be an expensive process, we have put together 3 reasons you should make UAT a part of your company’s testing process.

1. It guarantees that the requirements are met

Unlike systems testing, UAT will guarantee that the end requirements of the product or system are meeting the business needs.  A flawless system, developed by the most talented programmers in the world, still may fail in the UAT process because although the system works, it doesn’t complete the ultimate business function it was built for.  By ensuring that the requirements are met through the UAT process, rather than after the project has been signed off on, companies can prevent many expensive errors that may occur down the road.

2. It assures quality and brand reputation

With each passing day, word of mouth reputation and marketing becomes more and more important.  With all of the media that is available for customers to share what they love, and discredit what they don’t, companies need to be more cautious than ever before to ensure that their brands are associated with quality.  By doing effective UAT, any errors in functionality or experience are revealed in a testing environment, rather than on Twitter.  

3. It removes unforeseen costs down the road

Any project manager knows that the later in the project that an error is found, the more costly it’s going to be to fix it.  This is especially true when the error is not meeting the business requirements of the end user after the project has been signed off on.  If this has ever happened at a company you’ve worked for, you know the hell that ensues after this is realized.  An angry client, an angry boss, and angry team members that now need to fit this old project back in with what they’re currently working on.  This is an expensive, time consuming process that leaves everyone with a bad taste.  These costs can be avoided almost every time by adding a quality User Acceptance Testing process to your project scope.  

UAT has a lot of benefits, but it is crucial that you adhere to the principles of a quality UAT process.  Otherwise you will open yourself up to all of these potential problems, regardless.  Many companies are still learning how to optimize and refine their UAT processes and with the right software, it can be done much more easily and at a much lower cost. Get the right tools and assure your quality.