Defect Reporting in Software Testing

What is Defect Report?

DEFECT REPORT, also known as Bug Report, is a document that identifies and describes a defect detected by a tester. The purpose of a defect report is to state the problem as clearly as possible so that developers can replicate the defect easily and fix it.

ISTQB Definition

defect report: Documentation of the occurrence, nature, and status of a defect.

Additional Information about Defects / Bugs

While testing a software application or product if large number of defects are found then it’s called Buggy.

When a tester finds a bug or defect it’s required to convey the same to the developers. Thus they report bugs with the detail steps and are called as Bug Reports, issue report, problem report, etc.

Defect Reporting Tools:

  • Clear Quest
  • DevTrack
  • Jira
  • Quality Center etc.

Defect Report Template

In most companies, a defect tracking tool is used and the elements of a defect report can vary from one tool to the other. However, in general, a defect report can consist of the following elements.

  • Defect ID – Every bug or defect has it’s unique identification number
  • Defect Description – This includes the abstract of the issue.
  • Product Version – This includes the product version of the application in which the defect is found.
  • Detail Steps – This includes the detailed steps of the issue with the screenshots attached so that developers can recreate it.
  • Date Raised – This includes the Date when the bug is reported
  • Reported By – This includes the details of the tester who reported the bug like Name and ID
  • Status – This field includes the Status of the defect like New, Assigned, Open, Retest, Verification, Closed, Failed, Deferred, etc.
  • Fixed by – This field includes the details of the developer who fixed it like Name and ID
  • Date Closed – This includes the Date when the bug is closed
  • Severity – Based on the severity (Critical, Major or Minor) it tells us about impact of the defect or bug in the software application
  • Priority – Based on the Priority set (High/Medium/Low) the order of fixing the defect can be made. (Know more about Severity and Priority)

Reporting Defects Effectively

It is essential that you report defects effectively so that time and effort is not unnecessarily wasted in trying to understand and reproduce the defect. Here are some guidelines:

  • Be specific
    • Specify the exact action: Instead of just saying “Generate the financial report.”, you might want to say “(1) Go to Reports page. (2) Select ‘Financial Report’. (3) Click ‘Generate’”
    • In case of multiple paths, mention the exact path you followed: Do not say something like “If you do ‘A and X’ or ‘B and Y’ or ‘C and Z’, you get D.” Understanding all the paths at once will be difficult. Instead, say “Do ‘A and X’ and you get D.” You can, of course, mention elsewhere in the report that “D can also be got if you do ‘B and Y’ or ‘C and Z’.”
    • Do not use vague pronouns: Do not say something like “In ApplicationA, open X, Y, and Z, and then close it.” What does the ‘it’ stand for? ‘Z’ or, ‘Y’, or ‘X’ or ‘ApplicationA’?”
  • Be detailed
    • Provide more information (not less). In other words, do not be lazy. Developers may or may not use all the information you provide but they sure do not want to beg you for any information you have missed.
  • Be objective
    • Do not make subjective statements like “This is a lousy application” or “You fixed it real bad.”
    • Stick to the facts and avoid the emotions.
  • Reproduce the defect
    • Do not be impatient and file a defect report as soon as you uncover a defect. Replicate it at least once more to be sure. (If you cannot replicate it again, try recalling the exact test condition and keep trying. However, if you cannot replicate it again after many trials, finally submit the report for further investigation, stating that you are unable to reproduce the defect anymore and providing any evidence of the defect if you had gathered. )
  • Review the report
    • Do not hit ‘Submit’ as soon as you write the report. Review it at least once. Remove any typos.

Defect Report Example

Defect Report

  • Defect id :
  • Project Name :
  • Module Name :
  • Sub Module Name :
  • Type of Defect : (wrong, missing or extra)
  • Status : (New, open, assign, fix)
  • Severity : (high, medium, low)
  • Priority : (high, medium, low)
  • Summary :
  • Description : (Steps To Reproduce)
  • Expected Result :
  • Actual Results :
  • Reported By :
  • Assign To :

Date & Time:

Example: Defect Report for Employee Login Page

  • Defect id: D001
  • Project Name: MyASP
  • Module Name: Login
  • Sub Module Name: Employee Login
  • Type of Defect: Missing
  • Status: New
  • Severity: High
  • Priority :
  • Summary: Employee Login Page Not Opening
  • Description :
    • Enter Url
    • Click On the Employee Login Option
  • Expected Result: Employee login page should get open
  • Actual Results: Employee login page does not get open
  • Reported By: ABC Tester
  • Assign To: XYZ Developer

Date & Time: 29/10/2020