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2017 State of Testing Survey

| by Ben Linders on Jan 09, 2017. Estimated reading time: 3 minutes |

The 2017 State of Testing survey aims to provide insights into how the testing profession develops. 2017 is the fourth year that this survey is carried out:

The State of Testing seeks to identify the existing characteristics, practices and challenges facing the testing community in hopes to shed light and provoke a fruitful discussion towards improvement.

The survey is open throughout January 2017. It is organized by Joel Montvelisky from PractiTest together with Lalit Bhamare from Tea-Time with Testers.

The survey questions will follow in the steps of the ones used in the previous surveys with some extensions, as Montvelisky explained in an interview with InfoQ:

Joel Montvelisky: Given that one of the ideas of the survey is to see how trends develop in the testing profession, we try to maintain the questions as much as we can to make it easier to detect the evolutionary changes taking part in the industry. Still, we reviewed all the feedback that we got from our previous survey and we also consulted with a number of experts in the field in order to get their feedback and ideas on the questions.

There are a couple of new questions about the professional development of testers, and a number of options that were added or modified to existing questions in order to capture trends that are more common in recent years.

InfoQ: Which major things came out of the 2016 State of Testing survey?

Montvelisky: In the State of Testing 2016 report we saw more organizations deploying at least some type of test automation, but most of these organizations also reported that their automation is covering less than 50% of their total scenarios, leaving most of their testing to their manual testing teams.

We saw more organizations working on Agile projects, but we also saw a large percentage of respondents saying their companies still use Waterfall methodologies for a significant number of projects, showing that the transition is not as simple or clear-cut as many believe.

For testers, the most important areas to develop are Mobile Testing and Web Testing, showing a clear trend on the types of projects at hand; while for team leaders, their biggest challenge by far is hiring good testers.

A final and interesting trend we saw in this report was that more and more testers are reporting taking part in integration and deployment operations, maybe showing a move towards more DevOps operation in the coming future.

InfoQ: You have been running the survey from some years. Are there noteworthy trends in the results?

Montvelisky: That’s correct, this is the fourth year we are running this survey and generating the State of Testing Report, and we have been seeing some trends that we believe will be reinforced this year, but as always we will be happy to see surprises in the answers which make this project even more interesting.

Among the trends we see, is the obvious movement of organizations to more agile practices, where we see a number of testers saying they are working on Scrum teams and in many cases taking the role of being their team’s Scrum masters. We have also seen information supporting the fact that even though the amount of teams automating part of their tests keeps growing, the percentage of this automation is still not very high, and so we have very large percentages of testers doing manual testing tasks.

Another interesting trend is the one where we are seeing that testers feel more and more secure in their jobs. This is interesting because when we started this survey three years ago, we saw only a little over 40% of  respondents who were not concerned about losing their jobs, and by last year this percentage reached 53%. This points to the fact that testers feel more secure in their jobs and hopefully in their work as testers.

InfoQ: What are your expectations for this year’s survey?

Montvelisky: As more and more people learn about this project we are getting additional offers for support and collaboration, and this is making us hopeful that we will be able to get responses from a larger number of respondents this year. This is important as last year we got over 1,000 respondents from all over the world!

We also hope to be able to translate the report to more than the six languages we had last year.

If you are participating in the 2017 State of Testing survey then you will receive a complimentary copy of the State of Testing 2017 report once it is published.

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