Defect Priority


Defect Priority (Bug Priority) indicates the importance or urgency of fixing a defect. Though priority may be initially set by the Software Tester, it is usually finalized by the Project/Product Manager.

Priority can be categorized into the following levels:

  • Urgent: Must be fixed in the next build.
  • High: Must be fixed in any of the upcoming builds but should be included in the release.
  • Medium: May be fixed after the release / in the next release.
  • Low: May or may not be fixed at all.

Priority is also denoted as P1 for Urgent, P2 for High and so on.

NOTE: Priority is quite a subjective decision; do not take the categorizations above as authoritative. However, at a high level, priority is determined by considering the following:

  • Business need for fixing the defect
  • Severity/Impact
  • Probability/Visibility
  • Available Resources (Developers to fix and Testers to verify the fixes)
  • Available Time (Time for fixing, verifying the fixes and performing regression tests after the verification of the fixes)

ISTQB Definition:

  • priority: The level of (business) importance assigned to an item, e.g. defect.

Defect Priority needs to be managed carefully in order to avoid product instability, especially when there is a large of number of defects.

For more details on defects, see Defect.