The courage to supercharge your testability

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Fear is a reaction. Courage is a decision by Cristi Ursea on Unsplash

Testability is all about building quality-in. It’s about identifying known issues before they become a problem while coding. Pairing testers into this process can supercharge the testability feedback loop. It can allow you to pick up known and unknown issues.

But pairing devs and testers together needs courage. Courage so that both disciplines can take interpersonal risks and share hard things such as what they don’t know, don’t understand or mistakes they’ve made. This will need both groups to listen, understand and ask questions to help each other through the process. Both groups will need to show curiosity, humility and empathy for one another. You will not only feel uncomfortable during the process but it will take time too. The temptation to go back to inspecting for quality – dev and test handing work off to each other – will be hard to resist.

Pairing for testability is not just pair programming but working together to understand what the behaviour of the code being written should and shouldn’t do.

Devs and testers should work together to leverage the skills that each have, not get hung up about the skills they lack. If your pair is more exploratory focused identify ways that allow you to make the best use of those skills. If they are more technically inclined then focus there.

Remember the key is to build quality-in not inspect for quality. So what can you do now that helps your team move in that direction?

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