Depending on which article you read, we’re either headed for a deep recession or may avoid one altogether. With so many economic indicators and mixed signals, it’s anyone’s guess. 

With growth slowing down and investors increasingly expecting profits, companies in the tech sector have been exploring various cost-cutting strategies. As a result, tech industry giants such as Salesforce, Meta Platforms Inc., and Alphabet Inc. (Google) have all undergone layoffs. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has even coined 2023 as “the year of efficiency.”

One thing is for sure – managing software testing capacity in light of hiring freezes and layoffs is top of mind for software engineering leaders. In a recent post highlighting software regression, Fast Company reporting seeing “conversations among former Twitter engineers suggesting that Twitter cannot identify what caused the most recent outage because it has tried to push out too many new code changes at once, and it’s impossible to identify which of the changes caused the issue.”

FastCompany article on Twitter code issues and fewer staff to conduct code testing.

Even if your company has the budget to hire in-house QA, building a software testing team while navigating macroeconomic uncertainty is difficult. Further, finding skilled testing talent, including QA and QE experts, is a challenge. Sourcing, hiring, and onboarding the best quality assurance and quality engineering resources is expensive and time-consuming. 

But the web and mobile software development show must go on. Many of Testlio’s clients embrace flexible staffing models to maintain or accelerate production schedules, regardless of the state of their workforce. They leverage a mix of in-house QA, crowdsourced testers for on-demand testing, and full-time or part-time outsourced QA and QE talent for both manual and automated testing. The economies of crowdsourcing and outsourcing software testing are undeniable.

Differences between crowdsourcing and outsourcing

Crowdsourced Software Testing

  • Pooled resources
  • Available 24/7/365
  • On/Off testing burstability
  • 1000s of devices, global testers

Outsourced Software Testing

  • Named resources
  • Onshore, nearshore, offshore QA
  • Part-time at 4 hours, M-F (w/PTO)
  • Full-time at 8 hours, M-F (w/PTO)

To help you visualize ways to build your manual and automated testing capacity, we’ve curated three real-world software testing staffing examples for any economic environment.

Staffing Model Example One: B2C Communications

Our client is one of EMEA’s leading ecosystems for media, communication, and payments solutions. They earned mobile app of the year accolades in 2020. However, as their application became more complex, their ability to scale testing was impaired by a lack of internal expertise. They needed help building manual and test automation strategies, governance, and processes. 

They evaluated seven software testing companies in search of a partner offering guidance, coaching, and hands-on resources for QA and QE. 

Here’s their current software testing resource breakdown: 

Testlio QA Services: 

Exploratory, regression, scripted, and smoke testing

One on-demand Engagement Manager in EMEA

One on-demand Testing Manager in EMEA 

Four full-time Outsourced QA testers in EMEA

Testlio QE Services: 

Automated test development, management, operations, and maintenance

One full-time quality engineer (QE) in EMEA

Staffing Model Example Two: Digital Healthcare

Our client is a pre-IPO digital therapeutics healthcare company with $1B in venture-backed funding. The development team was on pace to double in size, which put much pressure on their single offshore testing resource, impacting overall quality. As a result, it became mission-critical to either expand their internal testing and quality team, double down on offshore QA, or find a holistic testing partner. 

With flexibility and ROI as the driving force, the client opted for a mix of Testlio’s crowd-testing resources to conduct exploratory, regression, scripted, and smoke testing. 

Here’s their current software testing resource breakdown: 

Testlio QA Services: 

One on-demand Engagement Manager located in AMER

Two on-demand Test Leads in AMER

One full-time outsourced Testing Manager in LATAM

Up to 10 crowdsourced testers per run AMER

Up to 20 crowdsourced testers per run APAC

This combination helped them increase capacity by freeing up engineering time and offered better ROI than hiring in-house. 

Staffing Model Example Three: Business Software

Our client is an early-stage start-up with a B2B VR inventory management software application. An underperforming QA lead left their testing practice in a mess. As with many start-ups, the time to recruit highly skilled software testing talent was something they didn’t have at the ready. Their CTO dreaded having to interview and hire a replacement, but the company needed help. 

With guidance and coverage as the priority, the client opted for a mix of Testlio’s resources to decipher their testing needs, build a strategy, and manage all testing. 

Here’s their current software testing resource breakdown: 

Testlio QA Services: 

One on-demand Engagement Manager located in AMER

One outsourced part-time Testing Manager in AMER to work closely with product and dev teams and rebuild a sustainable and efficient testing infrastructure. 

One on-demand Testing Manager located in AMER

One on-demand Test Lead in EMEA

Up to 33 global and on-demand crowd testers per run

This combination helped them rebuild a better and more efficient testing practice with greater flexibility, coverage, and cost savings over hiring in-house. 

In the best of times and in the worst of times, you’re on the hook to continuously test and release the highest quality web and mobile software applications. So whether you need to occasionally augment your internal QA team or bring on full-time QEs, scaling your software testing capacity doesn’t have to be a “keep you awake at night” type of stressor. 

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Tim Ryan serves as the Director of Marketing for Testlio and spends his time between Austin, TX and New Orleans, LA.