I have seen a lot of confusion around the term, “best Practices” lately. In testing, this confusion usually results in many hours of unnecessary work, which also results in project delays.
When project groups are asking for best practices in a new process, what they are really asking for is how other universities are doing the same thing. We are finding that they are all different, so there goes the concept of a best practice. We still need to find the best way for us, but it is NOT a best practice. If it were, we would all be doing it the same way. It may be the best practice for us, though, so I prefer to call it a “good practice in context.”
This is especially true in testing. If you are familiar with the “What is QA?” page on this site, you know that our approach to testing is Context-Driven. Which simply means that there is no one best way to test anything. The testing strategy is fully dependent on the context of the project. After all, if there really were one best way to test, there wouldn’t be so many other companies looking for their own best practices.
“There are good practices in context, but there are no best practices.”
This month’s post is from a Better Software Magazine article published by Stickyminds.com. Michael Bolton does an excellent job dispelling the myth of best practices. Read on to see why he believes there’s no such thing as a best practice.