Feeds

Software testing? Not likely

Getting free and easing with the truth

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Go to the website of software testing company SQS and one of the first things you'll see is an interesting question concerning all Windows-based environments: "Eighty per cent of your applications will work with Vista, but do you know which 80 per cent?"

It does rather neatly sum up one of the key issues about software testing: users can bump into the need for it just about anywhere.

The trouble is, while lots of user organisations accept the theory behind the need to carry out testing, the practical upshot is that many don't seem to actually do it. This is one of the results to emerge from an independent study the company has recently sponsored. It was undertaken by Coleman Parkes Research in November and December last year, covering 250 organisations across England, Ireland and South Africa.

Evidence that user companies are not practicing what they might preach comes through clearly. More than three quarters of them (77 per cent) claim that testing is an essential investment when deploying new technology, yet 55 per cent admit they are not consistent about software testing, and only 31 per cent always have a separate testing budget. In fact, nearly half of the companies surveyed never set aside budget for testing as part of the development process.

Despite the evidence that testing is already the poor relation in software development, its chances of improvement seem remote, if the survey is any guide. For example, the survey also shows that 37 per cent of users complain at the cost of testing, even though some of them are not even doing it. One statistic in particular demonstrates that the depth of knowledge about testing amongst users is also arguably lower than it should be. Over 40 per cent of the survey reported that they find it difficult to know when they have done enough testing.

There is, of course, a pay-off line to the survey. Around 75 per cent of them reported wanting the ability to scale their testing resources to meet fluctuating demands, and when it got to issues such as the use of best-practice testing techniques and the availability of business or system knowledge in a testing environment then the vast majority thought these a "good thing". SQS will no doubt be pleased see such a result as it is an independent software testing and quality management house.

That blatant vested interest does not, however, invalidate the evidence that there is a pretty poor appreciation of the value of software testing, which may mean a short-term cost saving, but can also mean a long-term hole into which users can all too easily jump. ®

Seven Steps to Software Security

More from The Register

next story
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
KDE releases ice-cream coloured Plasma 5 just in time for summer
Melty but refreshing - popular rival to Mint's Cinnamon's still a work in progress
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Put down that Oracle database patch: It could cost $23,000 per CPU
On-by-default INMEMORY tech a boon for developers ... as long as they can afford it
Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY
Web devs, Mozilla really wants you to like this one
Google shows off new Chrome OS look
Athena springs full-grown from Chromium project's head
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.