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Most agile testing practices are counter-intuitive

Photo by Krista Mangulsone on Unsplash

Most agile testing practices are counter-intuitive

Well, most complex things are

Photo by Krista Mangulsone on Unsplash

Last Saturday were the first Deezer ConTEST, a fun and inspiring event mixing Product and QA organized by Deezer. (link at the end of the article)

For me, this event was also the opportunity to chat with peers. Among them was Florian Zilliox, who held an amazing talk during a previous Agile Testing Paris meetup session. (link at the end of the article)

Florian was one of the speakers of the Deezer ConTEST. He told me aferwards that he was surprised by some questions he was asked.

Photo by Krista Mangulsone on Unsplash

More specifically, he realized that most agile testing practices are counter-intuitive.

I was less surprised than him. Maybe because I am an avid reader of John Cutler who often explains how Product Management and Product Development are counter-intuitive. (links at the end of the article)

Let’s list quite a few such counter-intuitive agile testing practices.

We’re used to see… → Instead try this agile testing practice…

  • Developers develop and testers test → Developers test and testers design
  • Don’t test code you wrote yourself → Write tests before code
  • Test as much as possible before going in production → The best tests are in production
  • Testers own quality → Whole team own quality
  • Automate tests to optimize non-regression cost → Automate tests to enable faster development
  • Test plans are required → Test plans as stand-alone documents are useless
  • QA has to check it is right → Team is empowered and held accountable to get it right
  • Validation → Build shared understanding
  • Hold QA accountable for missing this bug → Hold developer accountable for introducing this bug
  • Developers and QA having different tasks and responsibilities → Have developers and QA pair on both development and test tasks
  • Good developers ship documented code → Tests are the best possible documentation
  • Estimate time to develop → Estimate time to develop + test
  • Quality is conformance to specification → Quality is a successful product

Sources and further reading

Deezer ConTEST

Florian Zilliox’s talk — Non-regression tests with exploratory testing : h̶a̶r̶d̶e̶r̶, Easier, Better, Faster

Photo by Krista Mangulsone on Unsplash

Some articles by John Cutler about how Product Management and Product Development are counter-intuitive

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