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It can often be the case that developers and testers do not have a solid relationship and cooperation. They work on the same projects on the same side, and  are of the equal importance to the final product. Nevertheless, they usually do not like each other that much. Why is that?

Let’s start from the basics: the main duty of a developer of any kind is to write the best possible code according to the requirements. On the other hand, the main duty of a QA tester is to find every bug, glitch or any kind of user experience issue that comes from that code. Both of these roles share the same goal – delivering high quality, seamlessly  functioning software to customers.. On paper, the common goal should bring them together rather than causing a gap.

What is the issue then?

Most likely, the only disruptive factor is the human factor. For some reason, developers and testers sometimes feel like having a  conflict of interest. This is, of course, an imaginary conflict of interest because both roles should serve exactly the same interest .

Developers and testers believe that they have completely opposite points of view:  developers want to create something, but they cannot shake  the feeling that testers just wants to dismantle  their  creation. Both roles are partly wary towards each other and question everything in advance. Some of the developers may feel  like their creation is being degraded and deemed as of insufficient quality due to the results of a tester’s work. On the other hand, if testers do not find anything wrong with the developer’s creation, they can feel like they’re doing their job wrong as there always must be a mistake in the code.

Another problem, although completely opposite from the last one, can lay in shyness, fear, or non-imposition of the individual. This issue can be generated from the main issue, and it is very dangerous for the sake of projects as well as the companies.

If constant conflicts exist even in the smallest percentage, it can result with poor quality of products and services, poor corporate atmosphere and eventually decrease in success of a company or the client.

How to improve their relationships?

1. Have an open-minded approach towards each other’s work.
2. Understand that there is no conflict of interest – the other person is involved for the same reason as yourself. You share the same goal.
3. Put your ego aside. It does no good to anyone, especially to yourself.
4. Improve communication. Introduce new communication channels and improve existing ones. Keep in mind that when someone points out a mistake, it’s not personal. On that note, try to keep communication regarding the issues as professional as possible.
5. Have small talk, make friends. Improve relationships with colleagues to overcome communication obstacles and expectations.
6. Get to know the other person’s work for a better understanding of the bigger picture. Developers should test their own code, testers should try to understand the development process.

What to avoid?

1. Don’t do anything on purpose. Approach your work conscientiously. If both sides have the same approach and do not expect from other person to do anything on purpose, there is no place for disagreements.
2. Don’t see yourself as completely independent parts. Developers’ and testers’ work in intertwined and closely linked together. Testers should be involved from the beginning in the development process as it helps them in creating a better test plan. Testers should also raise the potential issues in a timely manner, and not to wait at the last possible moment.
3. Never deviate from your primary responsibility. Developer’s job is to create the best possible code and tester’s purpose is to find what is wrong in it. Anything besides this is not relevant.

How did we deal with this issue at Saint Di?

1. We created high-quality communication channels. We determined communication platforms and split up the work-related and non-work-related communication spaces. We write reports and have meetings on regular basis. Everyone keeps up to date with everything that is happening.
2. We created transparent and understandable organisational structure and hierarchy. We clearly understand what responsibilities and duties for each role are. Everybody knows who they report to, in what manner, as well as deadlines for each phase of the work.
3. We remind one another of the crucial goals of our work and cooperation.
4. We organise a lot of social gatherings. This way our employees have a chance to get to know each other better, with the main purpose of having mutual understanding. They have the opportunity to become friends with one another, and overcome personal differences. This results in decrease in mistrust, wrong assumptions, and discrepancy in views.
5. We keep our employees motivated. Both testers and developers have incentives and rewards for their good work, which reduces complaints and keeps them content.

To sum up

When we look at it from several different points of view, we can agree that these issues are somewhat understandable. However, we should not allow this to develop any further.

In order for the company to function well and expect growth, mechanisms must be found in time to prevent this type of problem. If such problems do, in some case, arise, predetermined procedures must exist, so the problem can be nipped in the bud.

Honest advice – laugh and joke a lot! Turn every potentially negative situation into something positive. Share good vibes and always hope for the best.

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