Are these really lame reasons not to hire tester? (part 2)

This is the second part of my blog series looking at the “lame” reasons why companies do not hire testers as published by bughuntress. You can see the original post here:- LINK.

just to remind you, or if you have not read part 1; the general gist of the post by bughuntress is giving details of 5 lame reasons why companies do not hire competent testers. Through this series of blog posts I will look at each of those 5 “Lame” reasons and assess whether they are as lame as proclaimed by the original post.

This post I look at:

We don’t need to test a product until it is finished.

What bughuntress says:

Waiting for product to be finished is not rational, as it becomes more expensive and too difficult to make changes. The sooner you find and fix bugs the less expenses you will have and the better your reputation will be. Even if you release Beta versions before the final one, your customers would not be pleased by the product full of lags and defects. Do you need to take such a risk to lose your precious customers? Hardly.

OK, so lets start with the positives. I agree with the sentiment of the title, testing certainly does not need to wait until the product is finished. Testing can be, and often should be involved as early as possible in my view, although in my experience this does have its limits which I wont go into details here, but I may in a future post.

Now for the negatives. Firstly I have never in my life heard this given as an excuse for not hiring testers, so I am going to have to take their word for that. My bigger problem is with what the actual details of this section on their site is stating.

The details go into the old view point that defects found late in the development lifecycle cost more. If I said this was being excessively generalised I feel I would be being overly nice. People much more knowledgeable and qualified to explain why this is not (always) true have written plenty on this and a quick Google will find information on it, but to say that all defects found late in the process cost x times more to the project is just as incorrect as saying all defects found early in the life cycle cost x times more.

I would say that a more valid reason for wanting to start testing as early as possible is to allow for more opportunity to examine and find out useful information about the product. This can then feedback into the process which will help shape and maximum value the product provides to those that will use it. Might it save you some cost and headaches by finding something earlier than if you found it later? possibly but that is not always going to be the case.

My Verdict: A lame excuse (if it were used).  Not hiring a tester because you are not going to test until everything is completed does seem to me an ill-informed reason, which is probably why in 15 years I have never heard it being used as one. This excuse is more likely to be used as one for not hiring “right now” on a project. Do I agree with Bughuntress justifications for testing early? No, but I do agree there are benefits to be had by testing early.

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