All the testers I have spoke to (in India) have these issues in common -
1. I have never got the release on planned time and my manager expects me to do a good job.
2. When we are not given enough time and the customer finds a bug, the managers come running and question, "how did it slip?".
3. I am getting no time to improve my skills as a tester, work is so much that I dont even get time to check my mails.
4. I quit my previous job thinking a new place would be better but it looks to me the new one is taking a lot of my time in generating metrics/preparing report/creating graphs than testing.
5. I am watching a script run for days together, in a few days I might feel the script will get smarter than me. ( for me not doing anything other than watching it play)
The Test Managers I have come across have these issues -
1. I am unable to gain confidence on my testers report and I need to keep my fingers crossed for each release.
2. How can I measure the productivity of testers? I use - number of test cases executed per hour or number of bugs found for a release or number of bugs found by the customer to evaluate a tester.
The customer have these issues -
1. I want as many tests to be automated, that gives me more confidence.
2. I am not happy about the testing that has been done by the company I have outsourced testing to.
There is a way you can deal with these situations my dear testers, test managers and customers!
Play football (soccer)
Aren't you thinking "This guy is stupid?"
Well, you might not think that after going through this post carefully and completely.
When you are on field as a member of a soccer team and the ball comes to you at a heated time where the opponent is two goals up, you are at a situation described above.
1. You start to think where you are standing in the field.
2. Where are your team members?
3. How many opponents are trying to attack you?
4. Whom should you pass the ball to?
5. How far is the goal?
6. Is your coach watching you?
7. Are your country fans going to kill you if you dont help to fetch a goal?
8. Will you be selected for the next match if you fail to give a good pass?
Diego Maradona, Pele, Ronaldo, Baichung Bhutia... handles these situations good enough and so they are the best. If you need to be good enough, you too need to be one among Maradona, Pele or Ronaldo.
Yes, I have started to like you as you got the hidden message saying, "A tester needs skill to handle and win these situations".
"Pradeep, is knowing definitions, getting certified and finding more bugs enough to handle these situations?"
Ah! you broke the ice by that question. Time to say, " you might be wrong" and if you want me to say the way, its "Rapid Software Testing" .
The complexity of products has grown as a monster in the past few years and you still want to keep following the approach that was formulated long back?
In some countries like India, we are angry against the government sometimes (many times, actually) for having companies/ tax/sales Act dating 1952 - 1957 which does not suit the 2006 and 2007, without even looking at ourselves that we haven't changed the age old traditional testing process.
Wait a minute, let me grin and get back to writing. ( he he , My pay slip has so many columns than the one mentioned in Salary Act!)
The picture you see in this post is of James Bach's identity plate. What he means by that is "Testers light the way". The project or product has a lot of dark corners and areas, which testers light the way they go and help the management take better decisions. ( Note: Its not the process that lights the way, sometimes testers might even light the darkness present in the process, accept them to improve your organization and product quality)
Its high time for you to ask me "Hey get me onto Rapid Software Testing"
Here it goes - Rapid Software Testing Slides by James Bach and Michael Bolton .
Rapid Software Testing - makes you skilled, if you are a tester. If you are a Manager, it gives you ample information in a short time that helps you take better decision on the product/release. If you are a customer, you would want this to happen in the company where you have outsourced your testing work.
Remember, I talked about the football/soccer game to give another hidden message that - Rapid Software Testing encourages skilled testing and also encourages an entire team to be skilled and tells you how to tap the skill of a team member to give better information about the quality of a product.
Yesterday, Manjunath, a tester from IBM - Bangalore met me and he couldn't believe the demo of Rapid Software testing, I gave him. When he left, he had to say, "This is great! I am a CSTE certified tester and we never get through all this that really makes a tester skilled" .He also said, "It looks to me that certification just shows that a person has interest towards testing". I was happy that he re-stated what certification means to him.
The reason why I had to put "It looks to me" in bold is because I passed on a couple of lessons that I learn't from James Bach and Michael Bolton to that tester. ( Psst! dont tell anyone that skilled testers speak that way)
-- Pradeep Soundararajan - firstname.lastname@example.org - +91-98451-76817 - http://testertested.blogspot.com