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Bug management: Fighting the Never-Ending War on Bugs in Software Development

software bug

As the magnitude of the software development projects grow, so does the number of test cycles, and the count of people involved in the project. Thus, it becomes absolutely necessary to shift from a simple spreadsheet to a more robust and sophisticated mechanism to make the management and tracking of issues simpler and consistent. To cater to the changing requirements, the quality assurance managers have adopted effective bug management tools for issue tracking and defect management in their systems.

Basics of Bug Management Software

Any software or system that claims to be a standard bug management tool, it is imperative for it has some essential features including;

–          The reporting feature which allows the users to provide insights and feedback about the issues, module, severity of the impact, and environment, which is available to all team members.

–          The ability to allocate and assign issues to the right team members and keep track of their progress.

–          A personalized or a standard workflow that progresses through the development cycle stages.

–          Storage of the history of the bugs, comments made by the manager or team members, and work log.

–          Visual representation of the insights and test results in the form of graphs and charts.

–          Similar as to the entities in the testing process which have a unique identity, the same is the case with the bug management systems. With the storage and retrieval feature, the bug management system must have a unique ID for every issue which helps in storing, searching, and organizing the information.

How Bug Management System Ensures Better Quality for Software Development Projects

As opposed to the manual spreadsheets, and effective bug management system offers real-time visibility for the bug tracking and progress report. With the collaboration of the teams and customizable workflow, the team is notified of the issue as soon as it is discovered or alerted if the said issue has been retested in real-time. Owing to the inbuilt alerting feature, the defects and bugs are brought to the attention of the team even if they haven’t been sought after. In addition to that, the availability of a central repository, organizations are able to sort the bug related information and data in the desired modules and sections. With the simple search, the users would be able to retrieve the bug and its history, comments, previous work done to resolve the issue, etc.

Since the bug management system reduces the team effort and investment in monitoring, measuring, and keeping track of all the issues in the software, they are able to spend more time on the development aspect, hence improving the quality. Apart from the more obvious benefits, with the productive use of this system in an agile framework, the organizations are able to gain a deeper understanding of the system under the testing layer and a comprehensive understanding of defect trends. Moreover, it also allows them insights in the defect reporting standards, while preventing replicas and unsound suggestions. 

How Bug Management System Work?

The underlying purpose of a proficient bug management system is to detect any issues or defects in the application in the early development phases so that they can be remedied without any complications. It goes beyond highlighting simple issues of performance and identifies any faults or mistakes made by the system architect, developers, or even designers. The bug management tool is used by the testing teams to keep track of all the reported issues and their progress and monitor them through different stages of the development lifecycle.

A major component of a bug management system is the repository or the database which is used to report and login facts about the issues. The facts about the bug may include its impact and severity, the time that it is reported, the member who reported that particular bug, the faulty program behaviour, details on the reproduction of the bug, and lastly, the identity of the programmer or developer who is working to resolve that issue.

In their lifetime, a reported issue must go through the following stages in a bug management system in order to be resolved.

Active stage – when the bug is acknowledged and investigation regarding its source and cause is underway

Testing stage – this is when the issue is take up by the developer and resolved so that it is ready for verification

Verification stage – the resolved bug is then again sent to the quality assurance team so that they can retest it and verify its credibility

Closed – the bug would be closed after the verification stage if it passes the test, and if not then it is reopened for further investigation

Reopened – the bug enters this stage if it is still not fixed or resolved after an attempt and sent it to the concerned members for further development

Conclusion

With the increasing number of alternatives available to the customers nowadays, they expect a flawless product with high quality, a wide range of functions, and a timely delivery as well. With bug tracking and management systems at their disposal, companies are now able to be at par with customer expectation and deliver an application with no functional or performance glitches. Given that it quickly recognizes issues in the initial phases of software development, not only is the company able to save time and costs, but they are able to streamline their process by recognizing repetitive issues, creating patterns, and coming up with permanent solutions. 

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