Each product, method or system should be tested for compliance with applicable rules and regulations and compliance with the organization’s standards or specifications. Compliance testing, which is usually used interchangeably with compliance testing, ensures that a software product meets all the criteria. 

This article will explain the difference between conformance testing and compliance testing in software testing to give you a detailed comparison of both testing approaches.

Compliance Testing vs Conformance Testing

Compliance testing ensures that the product complies with the applicable rules and regulations. While compliance testing is a broader concept, this software testing procedure implies compliance of a system to the standards and regulations set by IEE, W3C, or ETSI. The verification process is mainly used for conformance testing, and the verification process results should be thoroughly documented for future reference. Compliance testing establishes how a system ensures that it meets specific criteria of a particular standard during testing. However, there is some overlap between the two concepts. Your compliance standards may require compliance with a law or regulation; conversely, compliance with an industry-standard may be necessary to meet acceptable requirements.

Compliance testing is a formal and accurate method of evaluating standards. Compliance testing is an informal and less precise method of evaluating standards.

Only operating systems certified by an authorized certification center are eligible for compliance certification.

Compliance testing ensures that a system meets all the requirements of a particular standard. Compliance testing is performed to verify the ability of a system to support multiple specified criteria.

Using Compliance Testing in Software Testing

For business, the internet used to be the wild west, and legal compliance was only an issue for organizations operating in highly regulated industries like finance and healthcare. But the law is catching up with technology, as evidenced by the flood of data privacy regulations sweeping the globe – such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe.

If your company’s software or data are subject to any specific rules and regulations, you should conduct a compliance audit to ensure that you comply with all requirements. Compliance testing is usually a hands-on audit in which a team of regulatory specialists (preferably in your specific sector) checks your systems, procedures and security controls for compliance. If the compliance experts find any problems, they will make specific recommendations to correct them and then re-test to ensure that all problems have been corrected.

Compliance checks are usually conducted by an outside agency made up of experts in the specific laws and regulations being checked for, although quite large companies may keep an in-house team for this purpose.

A compliance testing is not the same as a statutory audit, but it is a voluntary self-check that can be incredibly helpful in preparing for an audit. A compliance testing will help you identify weaknesses in your compliance programme, such as whether you need more training for staff, insufficient security controls or administrative procedures need greater accuracy. This will allow you to address and rectify any compliance issues before an auditor discovers them.


Use of Conformance Testing in Software Testing

Conformance testing is concerned with adhering to specific industry, technical, or contractual standards that may or may not intersect with legal compliance requirements. Conformance testing is often concerned with the functionality of your software and systems, as well as whether or not you meet particular benchmarks. Conformance testing is usually classified into three types:

  • Load Testing
  • Stress Testing
  • Volume Testing

Conformance testing may be obligatory or optional to assure the quality and compatibility of your software. Conformance testing is aimed to  help you deliver a high-quality product that meets all consumer, and industry requirements.

Final Thoughts

Choosing the right compliance testing partner is important to build software without failures. Contact us today and take advantage of our profound testing experience.