I know quite well the difference between Quality Control and Quality Assurance. However (maybe as I am not a native speaker) I have issues with understanding of QC as defined by ISO 9000:

QC - 'part of quality management focused on fulfilling quality requirements'.

-Monitoring of processes to ensure the output is of quality
-Activities to correct discrepancies

I cannot see how this is fulfilling quality requirements? I would say that only development actually can fulfill the requirement, QC only checks the conformance but on its own cannot fulfill anything. Or is this what it means - that it is concerned with whether the requirements are met?

  • Even more interesting is: how you can "assure" the quality? I would love to know. Commented Jun 8, 2016 at 13:35

2 Answers 2


Since you understand the difference between QC and QA, you know that these terms originated from manufacturing, where QC is a process of sampling the quality of manufactured items and QA is a set of processes meant to produce fewer defects.

Since software is not a manufacturing process in the traditional sense, you need to consider those terms in a different light.

Do not preoccupy yourself with the meaning of "fulfill". It is more important to understand the concept of testing and its relationship to ISO-9000.

Monitoring of processes to ensure the output is of quality

Really, anything going on in the company has the potential to impact quality. Some things are more apparent, or more measurable, or have a more direct impact. For example, if you do daily smoke tests in QA, and most of the smoke tests fail, that tells you that developers need to be more careful about testing before they check things in. It might also tell you that it is too hard for developers to test. These things ultimately impact your quality.

Activities to correct discrepancies

Quality is about incremental improvement: you measure, find a problem, correct it, and then measure again. In the example above, an activity might be about adding tools that make it easier for developers to test, e.g. a way to generate test data automatically or maybe an easy way to install and run the software in a disposable environment.


I believe QC is more procedural then fulfilment, it's concerned with whether requirements are met more than anything else

QC, as defined by ISO 9000, is moreorless a set of standards for analyzing quality management systems or ways companies do business. It postulates that understanding, documenting and declaring the minutest function performed allows a company to understand the function in context, and protect that function... So, basically, every action that must be performed in the line of work, is someone's job, it's in his/her job description, and when evaluating that function, it's understood in the full context....

That said, how businesses keep up with this QC of functions is difficult cuz companies grow and often job responsibilities increase organically, without full declarations, job descriptions, lines of authority and responsibilities, etc. etc.

Ultimately, in order for ISO 9000 to fulfill the requirement, the business must initiate self analysis on a constant consistent basis. And that's where QA comes in to play...

Hope this makes sense, I'm no expert by any means...

[This is what I get for dating a QC manager in Victoria (we only went on one date, lol)]

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.