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Communication skills for testers


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A good tester uses communication not only to 'let others know', but also to get the information they need. An even greater tester knows how to use communication as part of their actual testing, to focus their process and achieve better results.

In this Webinar we will go over all the advanced aspects of communication and how to leverage them as part of your testing:
- The communication process in testing - a 360 Degree view.
- How to leverage communication as an ongoing part of your process.
- Tips and tricks on how to communicate effectively with your project stakeholders.

Published in: Software
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Communication skills for testers

  1. 1. Communica)on  Skills  for  Testers   Why  you  have  been  doing  it  wrong  all  this  )me…   With:  Joel  Montvelisky - Chief  Solu)on  Architect  
  2. 2. What  we  want  to  cover  today?   What  is  Communica)on?   Typical  Tes)ng  Communica)on   4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on  Model   Communica)on  and  Career  Path  Maturity   Q&A   1 2 3 4 5
  3. 3. Who  am  I?   Professions  :   (last  20  years)                -­‐  Tester            -­‐  QA  Manager            -­‐  Blogger            -­‐  Speaker            -­‐  Solu)on  Architect   Prac)Test:   -­‐  Chief  Solu)on  Architect   -­‐  QA  Manager  
  4. 4. About     ✓  SaaS  ALM  Solu)on   ✓  Simple  &  Intui)ve  –  yet  –  Professional  &  Flexible   ✓  Integrates  with  Jira,  Selenium,  Jenkins,  Pivotal  Tracker,   QTP,  Bugzilla,  Ranorex,  SoapUI,  etc…   ✓  Best  Darn  Support  in  the  Business  ☺  
  5. 5. What  is  Communica)on?   1
  6. 6. What  is  communica)on?   The  Goal   The  Players   •  Sender   •  Receiver/s   The  Channel     (encoding  -­‐  medium  -­‐  decoding)   The  Message   In  Theory,     we  think  of  Communica)on  like  this…   Every  communica)on  event  is  defined  by  4   components:   1 2 3 4
  7. 7. What  is  communica)on?   In  Prac)ce,     Communica)on  is  more  like  this…  
  8. 8. What  is  Communica)on  Alignment?   Focusing  on  the  GOAL,  we  need  to  ask  ourselves   3  important  ques)ons:   – What  do  we  Want  to  Achieve?   – Who  is  Sending  and  Receiving  the  Message?   – What  Channel  Should  we  Use?  
  9. 9. “Typical”   Tes)ng  Communica)on   2
  10. 10. Typical  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Bugs   Release   Notes   Test   Results   Tes)ng   Recommenda)ons     Tes)ng   Summary   Reports   Status     Updates  
  11. 11. The  main  problem:     As  testers,  we  don’t  understand  the  GOALs  we   can  achieve  with  the  correct     Tes)ng  Communica)on.   Typical  Tes)ng  Communica)on   We  limit  Tes*ng  Communica*on  to  upda*ng  “everyone”  on   the  status  of  our  tes*ng,  when  we  could  be  achieving  a  lot   more...  
  12. 12. Communica)on  is     the  Most  Important  Tool     of  the  Tester!  
  13. 13. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   3
  14. 14. Construc)ve  Communica)on   Inves)ga)ve  Communica)on   4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Learning  Communica)on   Over  the  Wall   Communica)on  
  15. 15. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  1:    Over  the  Wall  Communica)on   Over  the  Wall   Communica)on  
  16. 16. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  1:    Over  the  Wall  Communica)on   Examples     !     Bug  Reports  /  Lists   !     Tes)ng  Results  /  Reports   !     Update  Presenta)ons  /  Emails   Help  stakeholders  with  their  tac)cal   decisions.   Characteris.cs   !  One  way  communica)on:                                                                  “Fire  &  Forget”   !  Dry  and  fact  based   !  “One  Size  Fits  All”  templates   Biggest  problem   !       Most  of  )mes  we  don’t  provide  any   new  informa)on  or  real  help.   !       It  enrages  more  than  it  helps.   Over  the  Wall   Communica)on  
  17. 17. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  2:    Learning  Communica)on   Learning     Communica)on  
  18. 18. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  2:    Learning  Communica)on   Examples     !     Reqs  &  Design  Review  Mee)ngs   !     1-­‐on-­‐1  mee)ngs  with  Dev  or  Product     !     Sessions  with  other  tes)ng  teams   !  Befer  understanding  of  the  AUT   !  Create  awareness  of  tes)ng  in     Dev  &  Product  teams   Characteris.cs   !  Mainly  inbound  communica)on   !  Around  concrete  and  simple   informa)on  of  product  and  risks   !  Introduces  some  stakeholders  to  the   tes)ng  process   The  Good  and  Bad   !         Great  first  step  to  get  informa)on   from  addi)onal  stakeholders.   !       Most  )mes  it  misses  the  chance  to   get  these  stakeholders  more  involved  in   the  tes)ng  process.     Learning     Communica)on  
  19. 19. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  3:    Inves)ga)ve  Communica)on   Inves)ga)ve   Communica)on  
  20. 20. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  3:    Inves)ga)ve  Communica)on   Examples   !       Mee)ngs  with  Support  to  analyze  )ckets   !       Mee)ngs  with  Pre-­‐Sales  or  Tech-­‐Sales   !       User  Profiles  (Personas)     !       Compe)tor  Profiles   !       Sessions  with  higher  management   !     Get  more  complex  informa)on  on  the  AUT.   !       Understand  what  informa)on  is  needed     by  stakeholders  that  can  be  provided  by  tes)ng.   Characteris.cs   !       2  way  communica)on  channel  –     Expect  more  ques)ons  than  informa)on.   !     Provides  addi)onal  tes)ng  ideas,  not   necessarily  related  to  func)onality.   !     Usually  surprises  people  when  you  come   and  ask  for  a  mee)ng  –  Surprises  are  good!   The  good  and  the  bad   !       Provides  valuable  informa)on  on  non-­‐ func)onal  stuff  from  Real  Life  Users.   !       Awakes  interest  from  addi)onal  stakeholders   in  the  tes)ng  process.   !       Generates  noise  from  the  outside  –  some   Development  Managers  will  not  see  this  nicely!   Inves)ga)ve   Communica)on  
  21. 21. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  4:    Construc)ve  Communica)on  
  22. 22. 4  Levels  of  Tes)ng  Communica)on   Level  4:    Construc)ve  Communica)on   Examples     !     Pair  tes)ng  sessions  with  Dev  &  Support   engineers   !     Test  Planning  workshops  with     representa)ve  from  different  teams   !     Visits  or  sessions  with  Strategic  Customers  or   CABs  to  understand  their  usage   Objec.ves   !       Get  and  share  informa)on  and  involvement     with  internal  stakeholders   !       Generate  recogni)on  on  the  value  of  tes)ng.       !       Get  first  hand  informa)on  from  users  and   the  field.   Characteris.cs   !     2  way  communica)on     !     Internal  and  external  players.       !     Requires  advanced  skills  of  communica)on   and  group  management.   !     Generates  more  involvement  into  the  tes)ng   process.   The  good  and  the  bad   !  Generates  recogni)on  on  the  value  of   tes)ng   !  Requires  tons  of  prepara)on  and  execu)on   !  This  is  a  long  range  gain  and  a  short  range   investment.   Construc)ve   Communica)on  
  23. 23. Communica)on  and  Career  Path   4
  24. 24. Communica)on  and     Career  Path   Maturity  in  Tes)ng   Level  of  Communica)on  in  Tes)ng   Added  value  by  the  Tes)ng  Team  
  25. 25. To  summarize   Communica)on  is  a  complex  mechanism   There  are  many  goals  testers  don’t  even  try  to     achieve  via  correct  communica)on  use   There  are  a  number  of  levels  of  communica)on     you  can  use  (smartly!)  to  advance  your  goals   The  befer  you  use  your  communica)on,  the  higher  the   percep)on  of  value  you  will  bring  to  your  team   1 2 3 4
  26. 26. Q&A  
  27. 27. Thank  You!   joel@prac)   hfp://qablog.prac)