Every day we do some shopping. Sometimes we buy cheap things and sometimes expensive. But no matter what the price is, we want to have a high-quality product. If we refuel a car we choose trusted gas stations. If we buy food we look at its producer and a production date. And buying things such as a mobile phone or laptop is accompanied with a long process of analyzing the proposals on the market It’s important for us to buy a high-quality product, cause we want to save our health, money, and nerves. The task becomes more complicated when it comes to virtual things, for example, about the software: mobile apps or websites.
In order to draw a conclusion about the quality of the work performed, you need a set of tools and skills of its implementation. Moreover, such revision is very time-consuming. Sometimes you need qualified professionals for it. In case your site is a complex information system, and you are not confident in your abilities, you can order an audit of the project at one of the firms specialized in such work (e.g. at our company). If you have free time and the desire, you can do it yourself. So, let's begin.
The list of devices your website must work on should be listed in the specifications. For example, it may be desktop computers and /or mobile devices. Usually, you also denote a list of browsers your website should work in. The fact that you don’t have such list in your specifications means that the contractor does not pay enough attention to the problems of cross-platform and cross-browser characteristics. Studio, professionally engaged in the development of web applications tend to have a current list of hardware and software which guarantee correct operation of the developed product. In addition, these studios always make cross-platform testing.
If you do have such list then use it. If don’t you can use ours. Before taking over the project, try the main use cases of your website (sign up, subscribe, buy, leave feedback) in different browsers and on different platforms. If you notice any errors, fix them using screenshots and /or screencasts. Create a detailed description of the problem and send it to the developer. This work will take you a few hours, but it will save you a lot of time and effort in the future when the project will work in the real world.
To tell the truth, the actuality of this question depends on how you intend to use your site. If it's a landing page, promo site or a corporate website, the quality of the code is not crucial. Actually, these sites are being rarely modified or supplemented. These websites exist for 2-4 years, and then you just order a new site because you want to be on trend. But if you have an Internet shop (or showcase), portal or information system, the code’s quality means a lot. In such software products changes are made frequently. The cost of changes depends on the quality of the original product code. In our practice, we have faced with such situations when slightly functional expansion led to the need to total rewriting of the specified module. Thus, in certain cases, the quality of the source code can be extremely important.
It is quite a difficult task to estimate the quality of code. The overwhelming majority of the studios do not make the code quality control operations. This happens for several reasons. Firstly the number of specialists who are able to carry out such work are limited, and their services are very expensive. Secondly, it takes a lot of time, while the duration of the projects, as a rule, initially has an underestimation. In other words, there is simply run out of time and budget.
Company "1C-Bitrix" offers a solution to this problem (for any projects developed on CMS «1C-Bitrix»). It is called - "The implementations quality monitoring program". The essence of the program consists in following: after the end of the project the developer passes his project by “The quality monitor”.
At this stage, the developer sequentially passes a series of tests (66 tests, 20 required). These tests have justified the correctness of the integration of design, the quality of development, performance, safety, hosting service. "The Quality Monitor" is a special tool fixed into the administrative panel of the site (portal). If your project has passed the implementations quality monitoring program, you can see the results here: /bitrix/admin/checklist_report.php?ID=2&lang=ru. Despite the fact that only 20 tests required, it is a good sign if all tests are passed.
The implementations quality monitoring program can’t guarantee that the website is written perfectly. But at the same time you can be sure that the website written on CMS «1C-Bitrix", was developed by using the best practices recommended by the CMS developers: website templates are installed correctly in the system, the site is set up correctly on the hosting, hosting, in turn, is configured correctly, the entire system (hosting and website) has no critical vulnerabilities.
In other words, they will communicate with you. This is an additional incentive for the contractor to perform the work at a high level. More about the implementations quality monitoring program you can read here.
Thus, if your site is written on "1C-Bitrix" CMS, try to add a clause stating that the project should take part in the implementations quality monitoring program to the contract. And also do not forget to check whether there is in the terms of reference for the development of the site list of devices and software on which your site should work correctly. The presence of these two paragraphs indicates that the studio pays attention to the quality of the developed products.