Nicky Tests Software: Bug Advocacy Part I

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Bug Advocacy Part I

I'm currently working on my presentation on Bug Advocacy for the next WeTest Auckland meetup using Prezi - which is seriously nifty. In the process, I'm learning a helluva lot.

You see, there are a lot of things I do as a Tester but, until now, I haven't stopped to ask myself why.

Communicate Effectively

It's amazing how important it is to communicate effectively in order to advocate for your bugs in the best possible way - whether that be written or verbal.
One of the things I learned from my BBST Experience is that the use of formatting can really help you get a point across. You could:
  • Split it up into paragraphs
  • Use italics
  • Underline subheadings
  • Use bold to highlight important sentences
In addition, being able to drive your point home by talking to someone face to face really helps too. I learned some valuable tips from Wil McLellan at a previous WeTest Auckland meeting.


Lastly, a book I highly recommend is How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. It's been around for yonks (published in 1936). But I swear you will definitely learn a thing or two from it. To be honest, I don't apply everything I read in that book (such as constantly saying one's name - it just feels unnatural to me), but I urge you to buy it or go to your nearest library and borrow it.

Gaining Credibility

Credibility helps get your bugs fixed. As a consultant, I've had to learn to gain credibility on each project.
I've learned to do this in a number of ways including:
  • Be professional - I aim to do this through not only the way I dress and how I talk; but I also make sure I sing someone praises so that they get the recognition they deserve (this is something I am rather passionate about especially since some people are better at 'selling themselves' and others can be shy but super talented - anyway, that's for another day!). 
  • Yet friendly - I'm generally a happy chappy and from what I can gather, I'm approachable too.
  • Consistently raise good bugs - I do my best to provide enough/sufficient information on each bug report. I also talk to the developers or business analysts for tips/advice before I raise the bugs or feedback after I raise them.
Update Thursday 3 July: Bug Advocacy Part II  has  been published In it, I  added a few more tips for bug advocacy and some of the feedback/interesting things I learned from the meetup.