The 4 Critical Red Flags to Look Out for in Software Testing

Tania Zhydkova
3 min readMay 10


The question of how well your testing is running is often answered with a shrug. While you may be measuring the quality of your product, you’re not necessarily measuring the effectiveness of your process. How do you know that a test has been successful? What metrics do you base your decisions on? This article will cover several common testing process mistakes and how to avoid them.

1. Failing to engage developers at an early stage

Your devs start working in silos because one dev might write new code, but the others are stuck fixing old code. When this happens in a waterfall process, you delay the release date, and no one is happy.

Unit testing is a great option to prevent many bugs before a build even makes it to QA. The fewer developers and QA have to talk about trivial issues, the faster a feature will pass the QA check.

Developers need to work closely with QA. When we develop a product for clients, our developers will often interact with the people that will be using the final product — the end users. This engagement is an excellent way for them to understand an actual user’s experience, but it can also help them see the bigger picture of what their product is trying to achieve in context.

2. Testing to “enhance the level of quality”

Quality is subjective, and not all software needs the same amount of quality, especially in commercial products. Do you know what “quality” means to your domain? If yes, why do you need more than that? Are you wasting time chasing diminishing returns?

Just as with anything, understanding your QA metrics is the first step. Make sure you have identified the outcomes you want to measure so you can tell if there is any improvement in time. Next, turn these outcomes into a baseline figure. Then you can track these changes and get more insight into what impacts the quality of your product and service.

3. Considering QA as an obstacle

QA is the last hurdle before releasing a new build or launching a product. People have done their best to get there. The product team came up with requirements, designers made some sick visuals, copywriters wrote colourful texts, and devs provided well-structured code. Now all these people are waiting for the QA check to end.

This can be a hard pill to swallow, especially if you have the mindset of testing done fast or not done at all. But the reality is this: a quality product cannot be built quickly. Don’t get me wrong, there is no guarantee that your build will be perfect when it goes out to customers. But as we all know, bugs are part of life (both in software engineering and daily life!).

4. Ignoring the importance of test automation.

In the past, test automation did not have the favorable perception that it enjoys today. Even in materials from the early 2010s, some individuals still found it difficult to rationalise the effort and investment required to implement it. Skilled automation engineers typically command high salaries, and the value they bring may not be evident until they explain it to you.

Ten years ago, test automation and modern quality assurance encountered different issues than they do today. Now, there is an expanding market for cost-effective automation solutions. As the demands of users increase, manual testing alone may not suffice, causing your QA process to become a bottleneck. In such scenarios, UI testing is a promising field for automation.

For effective quality assurance, it’s important to identify warning signs early. Transparency and validation are necessary for every project.

If you want to follow my testing learning journey, follow the “Software Testing Talks” groups I created on Reddit and Linkedin. I share the most interesting QA discussions I find on the web and insights I get during testing work and studies there.

I am also happy to hear your feedback, suggestions, or ideas about what you would like me to write more about. Don’t hesitate to text me if you want to say hi or discuss something.



Tania Zhydkova

Passionate about software quality // QA engineers community builder at aqua cloud 🌎