Does it look like this?
- Myriad of quality problems discovered post product launch
- Test runs reserved for one pass at the last minute prior to launch with little available time
- Scope of testing a mystery as the test team attempts pell-mell to qualify the product in the throes of a launch
- Spending big $$ on field quality including replacement of new parts--campaigns and recalls galore
- Reputation sullied and competition climbing up your back
Wear and tear on customers AND employees
Anybody who has been in the product testing field for long understands the drill; in short, testing a product about which you may know nothing. Often the product features and expectations are loosely and orally conveyed. This is like the word of mouth contract for lawyers--not worth the paper on which it is printed.
Test runs late in the project drive corrections, which are compressed against the launch date. I cannot count the times I witnessed such chaos. Getting fixes secured before launch is difficult, and, often, the organization executes testing with blinders on--nobody finds problems they seek not…yet.
This way of working and delivering the product wears on your customer, and this recurring, ineffective method of testing effects the testers, also.
Don't hesitate, iterate!
Instead of waiting until the end, try to iterate builds of the product incrementally to learn about the product and make active and dynamic improvements. Plan the functional growth of the product, recognizing that some features will always change. Provide as much time and information as possible, allow the generation of test cases, and perhaps automate those test cases using the requirements.
Multiple approaches to testing.
There is no single approach to testing success, but there can be a single point for failure. Weak testing leads to poor product introductions.