Software Testing Best Practices for Pros

Software Testing, Manual Testing

When it comes to testing software, do you think about a singular test like regression or functional testing? Or do you get baffled by the broad picture of all the interconnected techniques that are used for software testing around the world?

Software testing is not just a tick mark on the checklist before launching the product – it’s a necessary part of quality assurance to ensure that each and every part of the software works how it is supposed to, and fix bugs where necessary.

That being said, a lot of us often dread the software testing process, mainly due to the aftermath of it if anything goes wrong.

But don’t worry; we’ve gathered a list of expert tips and tricks that will ease your software testing experience.

#1. Have The Right Mindset Before Starting

We often start the software testing process with the wrong mentality – we are often fearful of what will surface in the process or are just reluctant to start the process due to its intricacies.

But you must have a positive mindset. Don’t be fearful of the errors; hunt for them! Go into the process with the intention of fixing bugs, it will be easier for you to spot them – even the small ones.

Also, we often may think that there are no bugs at all, especially if our own teams were directly involved in developing the software. That is the wrong approach.

Be a critic and be vigilant – only then can you be successful as a software tester.

#2. Analyze the Test Results Carefully

Software Testing Best Practices

While the final result may just be a pass or a fail, that doesn’t show everything. You must thoroughly analyze the test data and try to find out why it’s a pass or a fail.

If it’s a fail, find out what exactly is wrong and how can that be fixed. And if it’s a pass, try to understand what was done right, so that the same can be continued in the future.

Always keep records of your analysis so that it can help you and your team in the future to produce better work.

#3. Increase the Test Coverage by Dividing the AUT

While we understand that you may not be able to test 100% of the software, but you should try to improve the test coverage of the application under test (AUT).

One trick to do so is to divide the AUT into smaller units of functional modules. That way, you have small and achievable goals that give you the right mindset. But more importantly, this will give you a chance to get closer to the root issues. If possible, you can also break those modules into smaller portions.

It is recommended that you write test cases on the unit modules that you have tested. This level of detail will help you troubleshoot easily.

#4. Test The Load Capacity of the Software Under Realistic Conditions

It is important to understand how many people will be using the software or how heavily it will be used. Once you have that info, test the software under such extreme conditions.

This is especially relevant for SaaS applications where thousands of people can be using the software for hours at a stretch. Now, if you test with half the number of virtual users for half the amount of time, you are essentially not checking the software’s durability under extreme use.

This is a common mistake that many of us make, mainly to save money, time and effort. But you must ensure that the software can handle the pressure, which is why it is always recommended them to host SaaS applications on reliable sites.

#5. Test As You Go

For the most part, we start testing the software when it reaches the Quality Assurance stage. Though it’s how things have been for long, this may not be enough.

The best way to approach is to integrate the testing in the software development cycle. Every time your a major feature or output is completed, it must be tested.

This is important so that you can easily spot and fix bugs at an early stage instead of waiting until the QA stage. Besides, it reduces the pressure on your shoulders during the QA stage.

#6. Don’t Test Your Own Code

Computer Programmer, Software Testing Best Practices.

As humans, we are usually blind to our own mistakes. Therefore, don’t allow any programmers to write the test cases for their own code. Bias and such blindness can affect the quality of the software.

It’s always a good idea to get a second pair of eyes on any creative work. Therefore, if you are a programmer, get someone else to test the software on your behalf.

#7. Test Away From the Developers

Developers are constantly making changes. If you test in the same environment where the developers have access to the application, they may make some tweaks that you wouldn’t be aware of.

As a result, you will not get a realistic understanding of the condition of the software, especially since the tweaks may get mismatched with the documented portion that you are testing.

Therefore, the rule of thumb is to isolate the test application from the developers, especially if you test during the software development cycle. In case they tweak anything at the last moment, make sure it is documented.

#8. Write the Bug Report Clearly

You’ve tested the software and found the bugs. Great! But don’t forget to document those in as many details as possible. Make sure that you write in a descriptive manner so that others can understand exactly what you intended to express.

If possible, include possible solutions as to how this can be fixed.

Final Thoughts

There’s no need to stress the importance of software testing – you probably already know that. But have you or your team been doing it in the best possible way?

By following the suggested best practices, you can ensure that your software testing is top-notch. Only then can you ensure the best possible output from your team!

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