We have to deal at times with requests where a prospective customer is approaching us for some work and wants to know how we do testing. Generally what we hear is a high level statement (or one liner to be specific) such as:
- Application x is being ported from platform x to y and we would like to know your test strategy.
- We are starting with mobile apps development and would like to know how you can help us with quality.
I don't feel this much information is enough to get anywhere close to strategy or plan. I generally tend to initiate a dialog with the prospect by preparing a list of questions depending on how much information I can gather from people around me (who are involved at this stage) and my own experiences. I try to understand the business case for such an effort, the technology stack, business domain and its complexity, test objectives, and few other things. The answers to these questions raise more questions and it goes on like this for a while.
What are some of the more efficient ways to handle such situations? We have tried with limited success in the past to prepare a generic strategy that we can refer to at such times (explaining our processes and tools and keeping them independent of any business case), but I sincerely feel that every such request has its own context and the reply needs to keep that context in mind rather than falling back on one set of guidelines (even within the organization our strategy, tools, and to an extent processes differ depending on the type of project). The problem is that we have very limited information to start with and at times the prospect is not willing to wait for the information exchange cycle. Any ideas/suggestions?