Intimate knowledge of the software, now that would be great. Unfortunatly that's not how it works in my company, all the test engineers are employed because we know how to test, not how to test any particular piece of software. There could be over a hundred different software based project on the go at any one time (these could all be using different software or hardware) that may require any of us to step in at any time and take over from another test engineer.
Documentation is all well and good (which with the age of the software we have, documentation is a bit thin on the ground, damn shame the original developers seem to have all left without writing anything down), but sometimes it's quicker to have a quick word with the developer to double-check before submitting the defect report (as this may be the only source of knowledge available, god! why do we have to use sooo
much proprietry software). I suppose I've got used to having the developers and other support personel within the same building as me, so a few seconds walk to there desk does seem to save time when testing.
Back on topic...
So it sounds like I'll be putting this as a defect on the tracker then.