Bug Tracking Tips

My name is Igor Baloš and I’m QA consultant at Wildbit.

I put together a small set of tips for tracking bugs, ideas, and changes when working with software projects. We’re always trying to find the right balance between organization and simplicity. If you have your own tips, please let me know and post a comment.

Create small tasks

Bug tracking can be hard when there are a large number of tasks. What makes the tracking of tasks even harder are the large tasks. Sometimes people tend to put as much as possible into one task, or the task grows when assigning between members of the team (developers, designers, testers, etc.) with no intention, which is a bad practice.

When creating tasks, they should be small, and should not include multiple tasks in them. Split larger tasks into smaller ones. Create small tasks which can be easily reviewed by all members of the team.

Group tasks

Always group similar tasks into categories (groups). This way tasks can be tracked easier, and it will be easier to find them for all members of the team. Also try separating tasks by type (bugs, features, etc).

Write down steps to reproduce

For bugs, write down steps to reproduce for developers — try to avoid large number of steps for reproducing. Smaller number of steps to reproduce — easier way for finding the bug for a developer.

Task flow

Task should always get back to the person who created it or needs to review it. If it’s a bug, it should be always assigned back to tester. Only tester can close this bug, since he is the only one who saw the bug first and can be sure it’s fixed. Task should never be closed by a person other than the one who created and assigned it.

Less means more

In your bug tracking system, try to hide the tasks which are currently not important — by filtering data or any other method which you find suitable. By seeing only tasks important for your iteration (sprint, deadline, milestone.. etc), the team gets a much better overview.

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