Smarter defense solutions need a robust QA strategy

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If you are a history buff or if you have watched The Imitation Game, you would have heard of the Enigma Machine. An encryption device developed and used in the early- to mid-20th century to protect commercial, diplomatic, and military communication, it was employed extensively by Nazi Germany during World War II. With an electromechanical rotor mechanism, the machine allowed enciphering of the most top-secret messages on its electrical circuits. 

The Enigma Machine is just one example of how technology plays an integral role in military intelligence. Today, a hundred years later, technologies like the Enigma Machine are being replaced by smart, digital software solutions. While speed is of the essence for every industry, it is life-critical in defense-related decisions. And therefore, it is necessary to equip the defense forces with the capabilities to respond quickly and efficiently, which the software solutions are enabling them to do. 

Battlefield management, area surveillance, personnel and asset management, armor and vehicle management, tactical military communication, radar technology, and aerial technology management are some of the examples where defense industry is employing integrated software solutions for improving their response time and efficacy. 

As we talk about the criticality of speed, it is not just limited to the speed of response but also extends to the speed of development of solutions that allow a quick response. Since the matter is of national security, excessive consideration and care is required during the development and deployment of defense software solutions. Not only the user requirements have to be stable, but there should be appropriate certifications and compliance for the developed software as well.  

Although, the defense software solutions developers have traditionally followed the waterfall method of development for the sake of following the certification protocols. But this resulted in a prolonged development lifecycle and a large gap between the time of demand and supply. By the time the software solution is delivered, the needs evolve and requirements change. To counter this, Agile software development comes to the rescue. However, with Agile, the certification protocols have to be hurried up. While the time-to-market is taken care of by the Agile software development methodology, defense software solutions require a robust verification and validation process to comply with the certification protocols. This is why a robust QA strategy and test automation become necessary for the success of smarter defense solutions. 

Intelligence, National Security, and Defense solutions 

Some of the key solutions being leveraged by defense for intelligence and national security are: 

  • Command & Control solutions: Military operations across land, air, and water require a strong operational support with smart intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance tools to make effective decisions even under high-tension situations. Command and control solutions bridge the gap between awareness and action, allowing commanders to communicate critical information to their forces in time. 
  • Defense communication: Any military operation involves a certain degree of risk and requires the forces to constantly be in touch with their leaders to decide the further course of action. Integrated, secure, and prompt communication forms the cornerstone of a successful operation. Military messaging and defense communication systems should be capable of automatically processing the information within and across organizations while staying compliant with the military standards. 
  • Electronic warfare: Reliable electronic intelligence from electromagnetic signals emitted from all electronic equipment provide tactical situational awareness to defense forces so that they can protect their assets in the air, sea, and the ground. These solutions perform everyday data management, update, and processing, so the front-line units can make informed decisions. 

Quality Assurance for smarter defense software solutions 

Defense intelligence solutions have evidently come a long way since the Enigma machine. As the speed of development is increased, there is an imminent need for enhancing the speed of defense software testing and verification & validation.  

With test automation and a formal Quality Assurance strategy, the defense sector can save both time and money. Having a strategic QA and testing process supports the development and deployment of a well-designed and secure software solution that is compliant with the stringent military certification standards. While eliminating the constant back-and-forth between development and production due to quality issues, QA in defense results in a cost-effective end product.  

Test automation for defense solutions removes the factor of ‘manual errors’ from the equation, therefore making the software verification process faster and more efficient. It allows consistency in the quality standards of the developed software solutions, while offering a wider test coverage for the defense software code.  

To sum up 

Smarter defense solutions are all about leveraging cutting-edge technologies including AI and machine learning to achieve operational excellence as new threats emerge. With innovation in defense technology, the armed forces are better prepared to tackle high-pressure conditions. Considering the life-critical decisions that are relied on these software solutions, QA in defense is of utmost importance. 

Cigniti, having worked with some of the leading defense software solutions manufacturers as well as government agencies, understand the essentiality and the sensitivity of decisions involved. We have dedicated resources and experts who bring years of domain-specific knowledge to fulfill the defense QA requirements with maximum security, efficacy, and compliance. 

Schedule a discussion with our experts today! 

Author

  • Cigniti is a Global Leader in Independent Quality Engineering & Software Testing Services with offices in US, UK, India, Australia, and Canada.

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