Software testing services companies & their magic wand

Wanting to grow to an extent to compete with many testing services organizations, an activity that we undertook was to go through all our current and future competitor websites. We discovered that most people seem to be saying more or less the same thing to all its potential customers – we will save so much of costs for you.

We are surprised that the trick seems to be working for them.

Here are some of the claims:

We will reduce your test cycle by 45% so that you could go to market early by our test automation solutions

Ah, these people are going to take your test cases that humans are executing and do some kind of a record and playback to say, “See, that’s fast”.  How do these people arrive at a number 45?  It leaves us wondering what we are missing in our education to not be able to think of any ways that we could arrive at the number 45 precisely.

By trying to automate manual tests, the clients probably don’t know that they are losing important information about the quality of the product.

Saving testing costs by 60% through our XXXX methodology

Again, seriously, we seem to be missing out on the art of arriving at the number 60. How do we save costs, at least 60% of it?

What is the cost of cutting down the cost? No one appears to ask that question. One of the ways to read that is, “Hey you customer, you are spending too much on testing. You shouldn’t be doing that. I will help you save costs at least 60% of it” and the inside trick is, “Once we get the project, let’s say to them that 60% of what they are doing can be automated”. What about the cost of automation? What about the cost of good test automation?

Also, note that these companies have a magical methodology for testing that the world doesn’t know. It’s top-secret. It’s in the same vault as the formula for manufacturing one bottle of Coke.

As an extension to what they are saying, “No matter whom we hire, what saves costs for you is our methodology, not our testers.”

Our consultants will help you reduce testing effort, adopt best practices and ensure robust releases

Phew! What if, for ensuring robust releases, we need to invest more? What if the customers have under-invested on testing? How would testing ensure robust releases?

What does the word ensure mean to these people? That’s a secret, huh?

Also, note the thing about best practices. Here is what they are saying, “No matter what project context you bring to us, we will apply best practices and save you lots of money.”

98% defect detection rate

Aha, come on. If you know what 100% is, why do you just find 98%? Why not all of them?

Zero downtime post-Go-Live

This is an awesome claim on one of the websites. For heaven’s sake, testing can’t ensure zero downtime. The world is releasing software upgrades on a daily basis and we never know what software upgrade would screw up another one unless we continue to test the impact of upgrades. Remember Skype blaming Microsoft?

The case of case studies published by a few companies

If we were to decipher case studies by some companies and put it into one sentence…, “This customer was spending so much of money on testing. We saved them $1 million and they are happy now” or, “We automated tests and hence making the test cycle faster by 50% and the product launch go as per the earlier set deadline”

Another case study is like this, “Our proprietary risk-based testing helped our customer learn all the risks in their product thus they were happy enough to ask us to be their offshore testing partner”

When did risk-based testing become a proprietary one for some companies? Also, if they do have such a fantastic idea, why isn’t it made public? Wouldn’t letting the world know about the magic be a fantastic approach to increasing their dominance?

Sssh! It’s all a secret.

Note to customers: We were warned to not advise customers until we grow as big as Google. We are going to break that now.

Here’s our advice to you

This blog post is not to get you to outsource to us. So, you may choose anyone.

We ourselves acknowledge that there are a few (only a few) good testing services companies in the world. We claim to be just one among them, that’s all.

At Moolya, we don’t do any supernatural testing. We just do it the way many good exploratory testers do.

Don’t fall into traps of companies claiming to save costs for you by a certain fixed percentage. With our little humble experience, we think that misguiding you is a disservice.

If someone is comparing human testing and what a tool does, they are less likely to do some real testing work for you.

What’s important for you is test coverage and how much information is being presented to you to be able to make a better decision. Focus on that, please.

Best practices are buzz words. It got popular at some conferences and people are fooling around using them. There are good practices in the right context.

For those customers, looking for testing services companies with a magic wand in hand, you’ve spent too much time on the wrong place. For others, please accept our Namasthe.

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