Custom Application Development

Jul 7 2008   7:16PM GMT

Beta Testing – Not for Everybody

SJC SJC Profile: SJC

It’s like the stock market – it can be risky – it can be frustrating and downright annoying – and it can be rewarding.  I’ve always liked participating in beta testing of products which I find of value, or as has happend to me before, in a product that I had to use – but (let’s just say to be nice), needed a lot of work — and by beta testing (with our live data of course) we got to evaluate the latest and greatest of the software.  Most of the time it was a win-win situation, but not always.

I wrote a few weeks ago about how my chiropractor didn’t realize what it meant to be a beta test site, and consequently just how much she “suffered” with the arrangement.

For me, as a custom software developer, I think I like participating in anothers beta test because I invevitably learn from the experience.  There are 2 major learning opportunites that I consider to provide the value for me by participating — they are:

  1. The opportunity to really learn a product and understand it
  2. The opportunity to find out just how the software provider works

Products and companies have made it and lost it based upon my experience with beta testing their product.  If a company isn’t easy to work with when you are providing beta testing, they probably aren’t a company you’ll want to work with long term.  Likewise with the product.

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