difference between verification and validation
February 28, 2023

What is the Difference Between Verification and Validation Testing? An Explainer

Digital Experience

An integral aspect of the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is assuring that, throughout the process, things are working both how the team designed them to and desired them to. In other words, this is known as verification and validation in testing. 

Though the two terms may sound interchangeable, the difference between verification and validation is important. Are you meeting the client’s needs and expectations? Is the software up to the standard you and your team have set? In this blog, we will drill down on the difference between verification and validation, the importance and use of each, and why Perfecto’s advanced testing platform makes it easy for your team. 

What is Verification Testing?

Verification testing, also known as static testing, is the process in which teams determine if their application is meeting the specified design and development requirements. These requirements include documents, code, design, and program.

Just as in continuous testing, verification testing should be applied repeatedly throughout the development process.  Each verification test checks a specific part of the application as it is being developed, which means verification tests must be deployed repeatedly. This ensures the product complies with standards established at the outset of the project. 

Examples of verification testing include specification analysis, design and code reviews, walkthroughs, and inspections. 

Benefits of Verification Testing

By employing verification testing as a tactic in your application development, you will be able to reap benefits like: 

  • Maintaining close alignment with stakeholders’ expectations at every stage of development, which results in less re-work/redundant work. 
  • Creating more insight into the various needs of the project as development proceeds. 
  • Reducing the number of defects and bugs that show up in later stages of development. 
  • Providing a foundation to help QAs estimate and prepare to handle those defects and bugs as they come along. 

What is Validation Testing?

Validation testing, also known as dynamic testing, is the part of the development process that verifies the application is meeting the needs and requirements of the stakeholders involved. In short, validation ensures that the application is acceptable for consumer needs. 

The simplest way to think about validation testing is to ask yourself: Does this application work the way we want it to? 

Validation testing consists of function and non-functional testing at the end of the development cycle to assess the final product and whether it meets the standards for public consumption. 

Benefits of Validation Testing

In the final stages of developing your application, validation testing can mean: 

  • Assurance that the product aligns with customer demands, preferences and expectations under a variety of conditions. 
  • Insight into bugs missed during the verification testing phase. 
  • Assurance that the application functions flawlessly no matter the device or browser based on cross-browser testing. 
  • Catching incorrect specifications or flawed designs before the application hits the market. 

When to Use Verification and Validation in Testing

The key difference between verification and validation testing is when in the SDLC they are used. While they are complementary aspects of testing, one must come before the other. 

Verification Testing

As stated previously, verification tests should be run at every stage of the SDLC before finalizing any feature of the application. That is to ensure you are not implementing a buggy or defective feature. 

For example, pretend you are building an e-commerce website. One of the requirements for product pages is a “Save to Wish List” feature. This feature displays in the form of a heart that, when clicked on, animates and confirms an item has been added to your wish list. 

Using verification testing, you would review all the documentation and relevant requirements to be certain all the guidelines are established. Then, the team would ensure that the “Save to Wish List” feature is located correctly on the page, the heart animates and is the correct color indicated in the original documents, and then actually adds a certain item to your wish list. 

Validation Testing

Think of validation testing more as a final stop before checking the box on a particular feature of your application. By this point, all the preliminary design and code elements are in place, and it is time to test their functionality. A common validation test is unit testing, which is run after every unit of code has been created. 

A critical element of validation testing is cross-browser testing, where you can determine whether your “Save to Wish List” feature works the same on an iPhone 11 as it does on a Samsung Galaxy S23. Validation testing is where your product is determined to be (or not to be) acceptable to the consumer — a major part of that acceptance is whether your functionality works across the device and OS board. 

Bottom Line

The thing about developing a five-star application is that in order to do so, there must be numerous checks along the way. That requires clear and concise documentation that lists the requirements for design, functionality, and so much more. 

Verification and validation in testing are critical tools in the SDLC that should be deployed with great intention and attention to detail to get the best possible application as a result. Start by verifying if parts of your application are being built to the specifications laid out at the outset of the project, and finish by validating that the sum of the application’s parts are working the way you want the user to experience. 

Perfecto offers teams an industry-leading to test on thousands of combinations of real and virtual devices and OS versions. Run multiple tests fast and efficiently to get the best possible application you can create. 

Take a free test drive of Perfecto and see all the testing opportunities that await you. 

Start Trial