At the risk of not giving the credit to the exact right person, I’ll give credit to the idea originating within TechSmith. That’s the tough thing about collaborative environments, it’s hard to remember who came up with what specifically.
Are you interested in creating an event that:
- Exposes defects in your applications
- Increases shared knowledge of applications
- Generates team building within a fun (and ok, slightly competitive) event
Then I would highly recommend conducting a Bug Bash!
Our early bug bashes were contained within one team. The team for a set period of time tried to find as many defects as possible for their own application within a timeframe.
Eventually, these evolved into department wide bug bashes. Every application team was given a different application to bash within a timeframe. Here’s just a few of the more memorable results that I loved hearing as a leader:
- Assurance that the known quality (outstanding defects) were known to the team. Many times existing defects were rediscovered but this gave information as to how easy/frequent/valuable the fix needed to be. Many times critical new defects were discovered by truly fresh eyes on the application. WIN!
- Generation of new ideas. Fresh eyes and integration across applications would inspire potential new innovations/value. WIN!
- Comments about not realizing a.) overlap in applications b.) capabilities in another application. WIN!
- Comments acknowledging quality, such as “it’s not fair we got this app, I can’t find any defects” WIN!
- Comments accepting that this area of the application really does need improvement. WIN!
- Laughter…so much laughter. One developer put a link out in campfire that was a virus for the other team to have to reboot and loose time. Graphics and funny taunts were shared. Creative awards and highlight reels of the event were shared to wrap it up.
The downside, it was often a lot of information for QA and POs to go through to remove duplicates, set priorities, etc. But I would much rather have this problem on the team then no information. Towards the end, often there would be designated people trying to do this while the bug bash was occurring (and awarding points for silly prizes at the end).
When’s the last time you made finding defects fun?