It is not unusual for a client to simply start using a solution without systematic evaluation. They rely completely on the solution provider rather than carefully inspecting the results of weeks or months of work. If the initial requirements were sketchy this compounds the potential problems that may arise. Weak requirements specifications often give rise to what is called discovery & ad hoc adjustments to the solution at unexpected points during development. (A certain amount of discovery is to be expected -- it can be minimized by prototyping.) Discovery increases costs & can causes unexpected errors to occur.
Acceptance testing & evaluation are an essential parts of the process of delivering software solutions. If you have well formulated requirements specifications that makes the job of acceptance testing easier. Well formulated requirements will be testable which translates to test cases & test data. We can help with the technical details of acceptance testing by:
This will increase the probability of successful solution many times over. There is another technical layer that can further assure that the solution was done well. We can inspect the programming behind the solution for you. To do this, part of the requirement specification must include the need for code inspection. Similarly if a database is part of the solution, we can inspect the database design. Why would this be of value to you as an end user?
Testing only confirms that the solution addresses your test cases as designated in the requirements specification. Testing does not address the quality of the engineering that went into the solution. The technical expertise that goes into code inspection & database design evaluation goes far beyond the skill sets of the typical client. A journeyman software engineer will be needed. We can answer questions about how well the solution was engineered. Are there weaknesses that should be addressed before final acceptance? Again to do this, part of the requirement specification must include code & database inspection.
Let's also address practicality. Code & database evaluation can be labor intensive. It is not in your interest to have a thorough code & database evaluation -- it would simply be cost prohibitive. We would inspect code & database design sufficient enough to do an assessment of quality. Of particular importance, an assessment should be in the requirements. If the solution provider knows their code & database design will be reviewed on completion it automatically increases the quality of the work done, especially if the reviewer has a reputation & website that demonstrates excellence.