There’s a lot of communication that happens during a beta test. You’re getting directions from Beta Managers, giving feedback on the product, and interacting with other testers every day.
In private Betabound Exclusives, there are two basic ways to communicate during the test. First, you can submit feedback through the platform (using bug reports, journals, forums, etc.). Second, you can email our team directly. While a vast majority of your communication during beta is going to happen in the portal, there are a few scenarios where it makes sense to email the beta manager directly to tell them what’s going on. Here are a few of those scenarios.
When You Should Contact Your Beta Manager
If you haven’t received your beta unit
Our goal is to get your beta unit to you quickly so you can start testing right away, but we can’t predict everything. If your beta unit doesn’t arrive when it should (you’ll get a tracking number so you can keep an eye out), let your Beta Manager know ASAP. They’ll make sure that you get a beta unit to test. Given that many tests are only a few weeks long, it’s crucial for testers to maximize every possible day of the beta period, so don’t wait to tell us if your unit is missing!
If you expect to be absent during part of the test
This is a big one. If you plan to be out of touch for any amount of time during the test, you should always let your Beta Manager know. If a beta tester disappears during a test, the beta manager doesn’t know if they’ve dropped out of the test completely or if they’re just temporarily busy. Beta Managers understand that their testers do lead normal lives and have obligations that may temporarily affect their participation on a test, so it’s usually not a big deal. Letting the Beta Manager know ahead of time simply helps them keep all their ducks in a row and will prevent them from removing you from the test.
If you need to be removed from the test
If something comes up and you need to be removed from a test for any reason, your Beta Manager needs to know right away. This is so they can find a replacement tester, as well as give you instructions on how to return your beta unit and all other beta related materials. The participation of each of our beta testers is very important to us and our clients, so if you know you won’t be able to participate in the test, please tell us as soon as you can.
If you encounter any issues that will prevent you from testing
If you come across a showstopping bug, or your beta unit completely dies on you, notify your Beta Manager right away. They can sometimes help you fix the issue or find a way around it. If they can’t, they’ll help you return the broken unit and get a new one so you can continue testing. You’ll still need to fill out a bug report in the Betabound project, but directly contacting the beta manager will give them an immediate heads-up that you aren’t currently able to test.
Tips for Communicating with Beta Managers
Mention the project name
If you directly contact your Beta Manager, or any other member of the support team, be sure to mention the project name or product you’re testing in your initial message. It’s a small thing, but since our beta managers are usually running multiple tests at one time, it helps them handle your issue more quickly when they know which project you’re talking about.
If a Beta Manager (or another member of the Betabound team) contacts you, be sure to respond in a timely manner. They may need clarification on an issue or confirmation that you understand what is being asked of you. Since beta tests are often run in very short amounts of time, the clock is always ticking. Every single day of testing must be maximized in order to get the product tested thoroughly.
Again, most of the communication that takes place during your test will happen in the Betabound platform. If you have feedback about the product, such as a bug report or feature idea, that should be shared through the testing portal so other testers can contribute to the discussion. For additional tips on leaving great public feedback, check out some of our previous blog posts about giving clear feedback and submitting clear bug reports during beta.
Remember, Beta Managers are there to ensure that everything runs smoothly during your test. They’re there to help you. This means that they are ready and willing to assist you with whatever issues you may be facing and will do what they can to get you back on track if you get derailed, so don’t be afraid to drop them a line if you need to!