What happens when Software Testers become friends with development team?

software developers and software testers become friends

When software developers and software testers become friends

Job of development team is to create products or services from scratch for customer of a company. Job of testers  or QA (Quality Analysis) team is to test the products and services developed by the development team to make sure the products and services issued by them are as per the requirements provided by the customer. Testers act as sieve through which products developed by the development team reach the customer. When testers become friends with development teams, any or all of the following can happen.

The Good

  1. Software testers get to learn a lot from the development team. In their life, the testers gets to work on various platforms. Being friends with development team, they get to learn more about these platforms and their developmental aspects as well. This will also help the testers find bugs more efficiently. If interested in a career change, a tester can become a developer as well. As a developer, the tester will know where exactly to look for bugs and produce a better product.
  2. Developers do learn a lot from QA team as well. They learn how to be thorough while developing a product and think from the point of view of a tester and in turn, the customer. They can churn out better products keeping in mind the repetitive or minor bugs reported by the testers.
  3. Adding on to points 1 and 2, when a tester has enough knowledge of development, and vise versa, the developer can outsource minor developmental work to the tester and vice versa. This will help the team reduce time on the deliverable. This is where DevOps come into play.
  4. When relationship between developer and tester is mutual, they are able to better communicate with each other, both knowing each other flaws and strengths. They know how to push each other and get to know each others breaking point. This can be used to deliver a product or service to a customer more efficiently. Now this is possible only when the tester and developer agree to not interfere in each other’s work and work professionally in the company.

The Bad

  1. Since QA and developer team relationship is that of friendship, the judgement of the tester can get muddled and a bias may get created in favour of the development team. For example, minor, repetitive bugs may be ignored by the tester as reporting them may cause friction between the tester and his/ her friend the developer.
  2. Testing team and development team working together can sometimes create favouritism of development team towards QA. Now if the ally, the tester, comes up with a large number of bugs in the product developed, the developer may start to second guess themselves. This may lead to loss of confidence in future developments.
  3. Relationship between developer and tester should be of professional courtesy. This is very important at any workplace. A professional tester will report all the bugs or defect, small or large. Developers and testers working together in the same room and developing friendship may sometimes lead to crumbling of professionalism. For example, the tester may feel a guilt while reporting huge number of bugs, thus effectively informing his/ her friend, the developer, about their supposedly shoddy work.

Points 1, 2 and 3 are really harmful to the company as a whole. It may affect goodwill of the company. As everyone knows, goodwill once lost is very difficult to gain in this dog eats dog corporate world.

  1. Friendship between software developer and tester can create awkward situations when it comes to “Who is to be blamed for this?”. For example it will be awkward when the manager blames a tester for an oversight of a bug leading to escalations by the customer. This, when technically the creator of the bug is the developer team.
  2. When a software tester and developer are friends sometimes they may overthink certain features about a product/service. A tester might think about how to better a software making it even more useful to the client but not in the requirement. Now, being a friend, the developer agrees with tester and may spend more time on that added feature rather than the requirement. When the customer gets back to the company stating the development was not done as per the requirement the situation gets aggravated further.
  3. A developer usually develops a product from micro to macro while a tester thinks exactly opposite, from macro to micro while testing. When a tester and developer are friends, sometimes this ideology tends to become reversed and may lead to effect the job at hand. For example, while testing a website, the tester may start by testing the code used and inform the developer that the code used has defect instead of testing the usability, UI first which is the first thing the customer sees in a website.

If a tester and a developer from the same team become friends, they should both have their eye on the goal – customer satisfaction. Usually, friendship between a tester and developer in the same team is pretty rare. The reason for this is that whatever a developer develops is their pride and joy. They put in a lot of time and effort into creating that product. The job of a tester is to find any defect or bugs in the pride and joy of the developer.

Think about it – How would you feel if your friend start finding flaws in your child?

Amey Satam

About Amey Satam

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