You probably don’t even know, and I bet you use maybe 2-3 of them.

4 if you are really into washing your clothes as a hobby.

This applies to most of our appliances and gadgets, our mobile phones, ipods and digital cameras. We usually don’t even know what the options are; we simply use those we already know, or the most obvious ones.

Have you ever read the manual?

It’s always there. In the box. The manual.

It looks nice, written in 4 different languages, with 5 content pages and an index at the end. But what’s in it? Thicker than a Harry Potter book. No one knows… It’s a mystery as no one ever reads it. Some of us keep them in a drawer, some throw it away immediately.

And this is exactly why Testuff doesn’t come with a manual or a user guide. Not only that, we have worked hard to make it unnecessary. We strongly believe that applications which need training or a pre-sales rep to use are not good apps. Just as hardware comes in a ‘plug-and-play’ mode, so should applications. This is how Testuff comes. Simply install it and you are up-and-running in 5 minutes. It’s true, we do have an online help guide, but it’s more of an elaborated ‘FAQ’ section. Moreover, based on our user feedback, it is rarely needed or used.

What about the thousands of features a test management tool can have?

Yes, we know that there are always more features a system can have. There’s always another report, another way to navigate, a new tab, a new tick-box option or a drop-down selection box. The line between a fully featured app and an over-featured app is thin, but better stay on the right side of it. Simplicity is important and it doesn’t have to be in contradiction with giving users the full experience and answer all their needs. As Leonardo DaVinci said, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”, and we’d like to keep the Testuff simplicity, which our users like and appreciate so much.

Too many features, a too complicated application isn’t a good idea. Do that and now you need training, a rep to answer usability questions and you’ll end up with users using 20% of the system’s options and features anyway.

Such an approach will also lead to a higher sale price, and a higher implementation time and cost at the other end. It doesn’t work, and especially not in the SaaS business.

More features = More customers?

Our experience shows that more features aren’t necessarily what customers are looking for. Of course, they want to see that the basics (and then some) is covered well, but they will be looking at many other aspects when making the decision if both the company and the application are good enough for them.

Reliability, competitive pricing, ease of use, security, complexity of implementation in the organization, integration to other testing tools (automation, trackers), high quality and responsive support and more.

Albert Einstein said that “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler”. Testuff does offer a fully featured package. However, there’s no need to learn how to use it, these features and options are used intuitively. You won’t find the likes of “tools –> options —> …”  buttons, but it’s all still there.

We have many debates here, long discussions about new features and new options we add to Testuff – whether they are required, will they make Testuff too complicated and less friendly. How many clicks a typical user needs to click through and whether we can make the process just a little shorter. There’s never a one only true solution. It’s more a keep-within-your-strategy thinking process.

Hopefully, we never end up with a complicated washing machine…