Only 36% of the designers I surveyed participate in functional testing. In fact, the only activities with less participation are bug fixing, implementation, and the writing of user guides. That’s a shame, because designers make great testers! Good designers are detail oriented, a trait that is also important to testing. Designers use the system more like the users will than like the developers use it, so we will often discover issues that the developers won’t. On top of that, we know better than anybody how the system is supposed to work—we designed it, after all. Participation in functional testing also gives us the opportunity to find and document usability issues prior to usability testing.
Your participation in more of the development process is going to result in a better product and higher job satisfaction. Participation in functional testing is a relatively easy way to extend your influence and grow your technical knowledge.