Are You Treating Your Testers Like Robots

Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Avatar


WHY DO people try to make humans do a task that is better suited to computers... WHY DO people try to make computers do a job better suited to humans!

Imagine you have a website that you have to test with 5 different web browsers, various logins and passwords. Now you have to do the same thing hundreds of times, every time you release a new version, every 2 weeks. Some people write test scripts and give them to their testers and make them carry them out step by step, click by click. It sounds like a modern-day assembly line, perhaps something out of Fritz-Lang's Metropolis. This is the job for a computer.

Conversely, if you have to test a complex web site that is changing every 2 weeks, with lots of new screens, many areas to explore and requirements and specs that are still evolving, some people try and automate the testing of this application. They spend a week writing a test that would only take a human a few hours to test. They miss all of the important edge cases, dead-ends, usability issues and items that a computer cannot spot. This is the job for a skilled human tester.

The moral of the story - automate the repetitive tasks so that your human testers are more efficient, don't try and turn your humans into machines or your machines into humans.
3 Replies
Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Avatar
re: inflectra.david Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Let us know if you agree, disagree or have thoughts!?
Wednesday, October 25, 2017
Avatar
re: inflectra.david Tuesday, January 10, 2017

I agree with this 100%. I am currently in a situation where management is gung ho on automating testing and we are still deciding functionality. This is a startup that will no doubt change paths many times in the next 6 months. Since I'm merely a pion, I will do what's asked, and hopefully, it won't waste too much money. I tried to explain why we should wait but they seem to "know" more than the person that has been doing this for well over 15 years. 

Friday, April 22, 2022
Avatar
re: inflectra.david Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Great post, mate! Automation is all about simplifying things and cutting down on human effort. The only place where most organizations, especially software testing companies struggle is integrating and sustaining automation into the process. It is important to understand what tasks must be automated and where human creativity must be allowed to jump in.  

Thanks for the amazing post! 

Statistics
  • Started: Tuesday, January 10, 2017
  • Last Reply: Friday, April 22, 2022
  • Replies: 3
  • Views: 35141