How many testers does a project need?

June 13, 2017 | by Claudia Alanis

In QA testing

How many testers does one project need before it can be considered ready and complete?  Being able to answer this question is very important and very complicated at the same time.

Here are some helpful tips on knowing your numbers.

There are different situations and moments in projects that help decide the necessary number of testers. One should always know what the best number is for each project.  In my experience, and in the different projects I’ve worked on, the number of testers can vary from one to five depending on the expected results.

Should we increase or decrease the members of the testing team?

The question is very interesting because the methodologies change and are customized according to several factors which help to make the decision of the number of testers quantity to have in a project.

Nowadays, we are asked to deliver the product in a short amount of time.  Therefore, the testing window only has a few days to do all the Test Execution Cycles. Those who have worked and have experience in the Testing Area, know that doing the Test Execution Cycle in such a limited time frame is not best practice. This would be an ideal situation only if the product is stable at a minimum of 80% and the goals and objectives of the Testing Process are very punctual and aligned with the Test Scenarios.

Sometimes the project estimations are designed only based on the Development Area, and only take in to account that the System will work perfectly and the Testing Team will not find any bugs. Let’s face it, however.  We are not perfect and there will always be things to improve in a project or bugs to detect. That’s the reason the Testing Team needs to have a clear strategy to follow through to meet client expectations in time and form.

A suitable number of testerscan lead to excellent project resultsThe project size is another important characteristic to consider when determining and estimating the time the development and testing teams need to spend on the project as well as the number of team members they need to excel results.

To make the best decisions, the Testing Team needs to define the Priority of the modules, the Planning (Plan to Agile Testing, or Plan to Traditional Testing or some combination of both), the Estimations for the Dev and Testing Teams, and the methodology to follow.  Establishing priorities is something crucial when determining the number of testers for the project.  Imagine that there are two high priority scenarios and the project needs to be delivered in two days.  One tester is not enough, and you’ll need at least two.

Another thing the Testing Team needs to outline is the complexity of each requirement to define the Estimation, and finally decide how many testers the Project needs.

We know that the Methodology could vary, but it is important to consider when the strategies will be applied and the time required to perform changes.

Another key point is effective communication within the team and to get a collective agreement on how many testers the project needs.

If you want to read about more experiences and learn new strategies implemented by colleagues, please go to the following:

Testing Education
Rice Consulting

By the way, as a member of the QA team at Definity First, we will be pleased to help you in your software project. We love to deliver the best results! Send us an email for more information.