10 Years in Testing ,10 Lessons – Lesson 5

Lesson 5 – Testing alone is dangerous

When I started my first assignment as a test consultant I firmly believed in what I was taught: I had my ISTQB certificate, as long as I followed that process my testing would be good and objective.
Right? Right??!!!

Of course not. I was a lone tester in my team and sure, I did what I could, but my testing was not objective at all. I missed parts of the application during my testing because of a lack of experience and also because I’m biased. Everyone is biased. (Please read the book Thinking, Fast and Slow, if you haven’t already).

I got my dose of reality after working in a greenfield project that went live. I was extremely confident that I had tested this well and that there would be no issues in production. It was extremely shocking to see that we did have issues in production and some of them were extremely disruptive for the users. That shook my confidence in testing and in myself. It was a great lesson though!

From that moment on, I made sure to involve my team in testing. I found out that we uncovered way more issues if we tested as a group. I found out that developers are great testers. I found out that it’s okay to not know everything about testing as a tester. I found out that it was more fun. I found out that it amplified learning.

This doesn’t mean that I never test alone, but never only alone. I advise you to do the same. Use the knowledge of other people to get a broader look and perspective on the product you are building. Ignore this advise at your own peril!

Thank you for reading, you can find the rest of the blogs here.

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