For the first time ever on a global scale a State of Testing survey was conducted to get a snapshot of the current state of the testing community, it’s members profiles, professional challenges and work practices worldwide.
PractiTest in cooperation with Tea Time with Testers came up with the State of Testing survey with the intention to learn more about the testing community around the world. The survey results present many interesting insights related to professional questions around the current state and the future of the testing, with quite a few surprising results. This insightful report is a valuable resource for testing professionals seeking to improve their work process and results.
The survey report focuses on a number of main issues such as: testing techniques and documentation, test automation and testing challenges; taking into account factors such as testing qualification standards, experience, team size and other descriptive data.
The Main Findings:
Contrary to belief of many in the Industry, testing is not a “very young” profession with most of the participants having 6 or more years of experience in the testing field. On the other hand, it seems testers like staying and growing within their organisations. This maturity in the testing workforce leads to a relative feeling of stability, with most testers (55%) saying they plan to continue testing in the foreseeable future.
Companies and R&D teams
Most surprising was the large number of companies using Agile Testing or Agile-like practices with around 78% of respondents. Many organizations in fact, work with more than one practice type; for example Agile and Waterfall together. Alarmingly, there is still a substantial number of testers in companies that don’t use any structured development model to manage their process.
Testing techniques and documentation
Testers use different techniques and approaches in their work. The vast majority of respondents (86%) work with Exploratory techniques, while a considerable number of testers use (or also use) Scripted Testing (66%), Bug Hunts (42%) and other approaches.
Testing documentation also appears to be varied, with different organizations working with blends of test plans, mind maps, checklists and lean documentation. On the other hand most test reporting is still performed via email.
The two biggest challenges faced by testers according to the survey, are around being more involved in the decisions of their companies and increasing the size of their teams. In fact, testers declare they usually know what is the real status of the project the are working on, but they feel that many times they are unable to communicate this information upward. It seems to them that stakeholders are either not directly available to them or are simply unwilling to listen.
The state of testing survey doesn’t only provide professional insight, but also a feeling of community as all testers face the same challenges and reality as part of their professional testing work. This serves as “food for thought” for the next steps each tester can take for their future careers.
An on-going project and not a one-time report
One of the most important things about this State of Testing survey and report is the fact that the authors plan to make this a yearly project, that will provide updated information and will also help to understand what trends start happening within our professional testing community in real-time.
If you have any feedback or input about the State of Testing survey you are welcome to leave them as comments. This feedback will help us make sure future surveys are even more insightful and effective.