2007/002 - Good Organisational reasons for Bad software testing: an ethnographic study of testing in a small software company
David Martin, John Rooksby, Mark Rouncefield, Ian Sommerville
ICSE, International Conference on Software Engineering, Minneapolis, US, 20-26 May 2007.
In this paper we report on an ethographic study of a small software house to discuss the practical work of software testing. Through use of two rich descriptions, we discuss that rigour in systems integration testing necessarily has to be organisationally defined. Getting requirements right, defining good test scenarios and ensuring proper test coverage are activities that need to be pragmatically achieved taking account of organisational realities and constraints such as: the dynamics of customer relationships; using limited effort in an effective way; timing software releases; and creating a market. We discuss how these organisational realities shape (1) requirements testing; (2) test coverage; (3) test automation; and (4) test scenario design.