Open Dental

Questions & Answers with an Open Dental Expert: Testing Team Member


Open Dental is a practice management software packed full of features, and as a result, we have a team packed full of experts. In this post, we will take a look behind the scenes of Open Dental Software testing, and explore the intricacies of developing our top-notch software. Our expert, Chuck, brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the Testing Team.

What is your role at Open Dental and how long have you been here?

I have been with Open Dental for 11 years and 3 months. I am currently a member of the Testing Team. We test new features, bug fixes, and the all-around usability of the program.  When needed, I also answer support calls and help customers with their questions about the software.  I have been a trainer for both customers and new Open Dental employees.

What does the testing process look like? 

The Testing Team has access to every version of the software, so we can use the specific version the issue was found in.  We try to duplicate the issue that has been reported and attempt to figure out the exact steps to recreate the issue.  Once we have those steps, it makes it a lot easier for the programmers to find and fix the problem.  When a new version is released in Open Dental, it is released early to us for testing. We thoroughly test new features, and we also have a list of general things to test to make sure everything is working correctly because even existing features have the potential to be broken when new features are added.

Why is the testing role so important?

The Testing Team is the first line of defense, we see the changes made before anyone else does.  If we can find issues with the software before it is released publicly, it makes for a much better experience for the customer.


What is your favorite Open Dental feature? 

One feature that I was both terrified of and now absolutely love is the API. This is what the application developers use as the interface between their application and the Open Dental database. Anything from seeing appointment details on the dentist’s smartphone to updating claim information and monitoring when patient information is changed in the program. It is an absolutely amazing feature we have added with an incredible number of application developers using the features to program their specific applications to safely connect with Open Dental. I test the new options as quickly and completely as possible because the developers are accessing them as soon as they are released.

As you can see, Chuck’s role here is critical to ensuring Open Dental’s quality and success.

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