Being a tester is an exciting opportunity to try out new tech and share your thoughts about a product before anyone else. It’s important to remember that these thoughts must be written in a way that a test manager can understand. If a test manager is having trouble using your feedback, it diminishes your value to the test and can even discourage test managers from picking you for future projects.
You don’t have to be an expert writer to be a tester, but you do need to clearly communicate your Issues, Ideas, Praise, and other opinions when you provide feedback during a test. Here are some easy tips that can make a big difference:
Punctuation is important. Writing long sentences without commas or periods can really make your feedback confusing and hard to follow. Be sure to use proper punctuation and try to keep your sentences simple and clear. Another thing to remember – you don’t need to use excessive exclamation points to get your point across. One is enough.
Use capitalization wisely. Using proper capitalization in your sentences makes it much easier to read your feedback. It’s okay to capitalize a word for emphasis on occasion but complete sentences in ALL CAPS drives most test managers crazy. Try to limit your use of the Caps Lock button.
Avoid slang words. On any given test, our testers usually come from many different age groups. What might be “sick” for you really isn’t “groovy” to someone else, so it’s best to keep slang out of any feedback or conversation.
Spell out words completely. While it might be faster to type “ur” instead of “your”, it’s a lot easier to read sentences with words that are spelled out.
Use spellcheck. Most web browsers or mobile device keyboards have spellcheck enabled. If you don’t have a built-in spellchecker, try writing your text in your favorite word processor and checking it for spelling issues first before submitting it through the platform.
Write in complete sentences. While a one-word answer might be the easiest response, you have to remember that test managers are in conversation with dozens or hundreds of testers at any given time. Giving a little context to your responses will ensure your feedback is understood and handled more effectively.
Keep paragraphs short. If you submit large chunks of text without a break, your message can get lost. Separate lengthy feedback into paragraphs to help the test manager read quickly and to keep your train of thought clear.
Be descriptive with your titles. In the Centercode platform, other testers can see feedback that’s been previously submitted and add to the conversation. When you’re submitting feedback of any kind, you want to make it clear to other testers as well as the test manager what you’re talking about. This makes it easier for other testers to find feedback they’d like to contribute to and for test managers to see what the most popular pieces of feedback are.
Keep it focused. You don’t have to submit the next great literary masterpiece. Test managers just need simple, complete, and clear feedback to share with the product team.
Remember, your role as a tester is to give relevant feedback on the product you’re testing. These guidelines can go a long way in making sure your feedback is clear and useful. Also, keep in mind that test managers are always on the lookout for all-star testers. If you make the effort to communicate well, it’s likely you’ll be the first choice for their next project.
Look familiar? This post is a part of a series in which we’re breathing new life into some of our older entries.