Testability is everyone's responsibility

Testability is a first class concern for all disciplines within software development. There, I said it. No hedging, no nebulous phrasing, maybes or it depends.

Too often we labour under systems that are hard to test, manifesting themselves with frantic searches for more testers, lengthy acceptance test runs, fearful testing for regressions with a hopeful release at the end. Worst of all, it usually ends up with a project manager sat on the testers desk asking 'when will testing be done.' It's never done, it can only stop, just so you know.

Throughout my career, often the testability of a system has been deemed to be the testers concern. If something was hard to test, then it was the testers problem. However, the causes of low testability effect the activities of all disciplines, whether it be speed of feedback to developers or flow of value generating features for product managers.

The activity of testing is rarely the bottleneck, how testable your system is is your problem. Poor testability cannot be remedied by one discipline alone. It's for all of us to care about.


Ash Winter 
Consulting Tester @ Diagram Industries Ltd

Ash Winter is an independent tester and conference speaker. His formative years as a consultant gave a broad background in software development. Experience in testing, performance engineering, and automation of both build and test. He even spent a while being a Scrum Master and Product Owner. This helped him move into the startup world, which left him with a tale or two to tell. After exploring all these options, he decided that focusing on testing was my path and works for himself now.


+31 35 538 1921

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