Alan Hynes' Favorite Bug

I was giving the customer (Product Owner) a first pre-User Acceptance Test look at a modified Commercial Off The Shelf system. I tried to call up the history for one of the customer's workers on one of the administrator's pages. The worker was not found. Hmmm. I could find the customer's history, and I could find the worker on other screens. I documented the bug and sent it off to the development team.

The development team was able to find the worker's history on that screen.

I tried again before I brought the fix to the customer. Same problem. So I looked at it a bit further and made sure that the reproduction instructions were complete. As I dug, I found that the worker's history could be called up if I searched by name. There were two ways to search, by name or employee number and I had used the employee number field to search on name to get the employee number. I documented the bug a bit better and sent it back.

The development team looked at it and found that the worker didn't have an employee number. She was a contractor so the feed that brought in her data from HR did not create (have?) an employee number. The employee number was a system assigned key and not used by the business at all.

When I presented the bug to the customer she agreed that it was working as designed and would instruct the help desk to use the name search and not the employee number search.


-- Alan Hynes


Do you have a bug whose story you love to tell? Let me know!