Being a software tester, you might face situations that challenge your efficiency and effectiveness as a tester. Testers must be aware of the hurdles, mistakes and traps that they may encounter in their lives. Following are the top 5 traps that you will ever run into in your software testing career and also the ways to overcome those traps.
1. Unaware of the Testing Goal: Sometimes you fall into a situation where you have no idea about the new or enhanced features that needs to be tested. So the tester might fail to recognize the goal when a new functionality/ project needs to be tested. However, if one doesn’t understand in the beginning, it might produce concerns later in the execution and planning phase.
Way out: Before the project starts, testers must ask related and significant questions to clear all doubts. Try sharing some envisioning ideas with the team and consider their thoughts as well. Last of all, testers can go through the available documents related to their project before going forward.
2. Short on Ideas: It’s a common problem, specifically in complex projects where you need to arrive with some fresh ideas. On the other hand, sometimes testers get exhausted that they fail to decide what needs to be tested next? This situation is often stated as ‘tester’s block syndrome’ where a tester is not able to discover new defects and bugs.
Way out: Testers can try carrying out pair testing to generate new ideas. Moreover, Brute Cause Analysis (BCA) also ascertains to be helpful where one can identify the areas where this bug can appear and the other can take a bug. Tester can also think of something divergently.
3. Unconfident after Identifying a Bug: A bug can puzzle a tester with something wrong that he might have done while testing a project. One can think the other way and fails to get the bug noted under his/her name if he/she is not confident enough.
Way out: They must trust themselves as a tester. If they are experienced, they must follow their instinct and report the issue to the development team. Also, they can take a break and get the scenario tested with fellow tester or try starting fresh.
4. Unable to detect a conspicuous Bug: Testers can get themselves in huge embarrassment, if they fail to track a clear bug. Anyone can face this situation, particularly while religiously following the test cases or testing checklist.
Way out: From time to time, it is necessary to stop following the test case blindly and think differently. Even if testers are following the test matrix and test case, they must be smart enough to discover other areas other than their test case. For example, changes in color of a button after you click it, weird sound after you click a button, try looking for a trembling object etc.
5. Unable to decide what and what not to test during Smoke testing: As the project gets more complicated and deadline approaches, a time comes where testers need to decide on what to skip and what to test? The situation could be quite challenging as they need to prioritize the testing.
Way out: First, recognize existing and critical bugs. Get more input from the developers on the issues and try reading docs, manuals etc. related to the project. This will help testers identify the things that are difficult to end users. In addition, pick a critical test item and get completely involved. You can quit in case it appears too tough. This Dive In/Quit approach must be implemented once you have exhausted all your ideas.
And lastly ... Testers should accept FAILURE, once in a while!
Due to the inherent nature of complication of modern day communications and software systems, software testing is turning more complex. As a result, more effective and efficient techniques and methodologies and testing heuristics, need to be developed. If you are not progressing rapidly enough as a tester then the chance of failure is very high and you should be prepared to face failure once in a while. After all, we are testers; not magicians! But if you are learning from your past mistakes, updating your testing heuristics and upgrading your testing skills to correct those mistakes so that they never happen again, I think you should be fine.