Transition-from-Excel-to-Test-Case-Management-Software

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7 Sep, 2020


We all know how complex the software development industry is – one single mistake and you’ll skid off the track to success. Customers look for products that are of the best quality. That’s why organizations then pressurize their quality assurance professionals to strictly ensure the high quality of software products via performing the best possible testing processes. For the better and improved testing process, organizations rush to implement the use of various tools. But normally they think Excel sheets suffice their test management requirements. Excel sheets suffice the testing requirements in many cases but organizations also face some challenges after relying completely on the use of Excel sheets. 

That’s the point where test case management software comes into place. Considering the plenty of challenges associated with the use of excel sheets, organizations are now adopting the efficient means of managing test cases i.e the use of test case management software. Yet many businesses have still not realized the need to switch from excel sheets to test management software.  No doubt, test case management software, and tools are significant when you are expanding the size of your team. It is then crucial to implement software that effectively manages tests, checklists, and executions. It enables quality assurance team members to release a high-quality product without having any risk of a cyber attack. 

But a question arises here, if an organization’s testing requirements were being satisfied with the use of excel sheets then why a transition from excel sheets to test case management software became popular?

Let’s discuss the reasons why this transition became popular among the software development industry;

Plenty of sheets are required – In order to plan the testing process, you will require multiple Excel worksheets. There’s a need to use separate Excel worksheets to track requirements, test cases, test runs, errors, and a worksheet for traceability. Regardless of the size of the project, 5 different Excel worksheets are required for various projects. If you choose to separate the worksheets by testers, modules, or releases, it will be difficult for your team to manage the number of excel worksheets. Due to a large number of documents, the possibility of errors is higher. Therefore, test case management software shows up as a hero to save an organization from going through the long and tedious testing process via using excel sheets.

Challenge of updating test cases – When quite a large number of Excel worksheets are being used, if the requirements of each version change, then tracking the test cases that need to be modified will be a nightmare. Therefore, since all test cases are not up to date, you may face the problem of inconsistent data. In addition to inconsistent data, tracking any changes is equally difficult. Your team will spend more time updating and tracking changes instead of spending time testing.difficult. This way your team will spend more time updating and tracking changes. 

Collaboration challenges – One of the major challenges of using excel sheets is that of collaboration and coordination. You have to use emails and other online mediums to send excel sheets to one another. If the virtual teams are far apart, coordination, communication, and collaboration become more difficult. And hence your team members may end up using different versions of excel worksheets.

Absence of agile support – Excel is unable to adapt to the changing processes whereas a test case management software supports the changing requirements of the business process including agile methods. Test management software and tools are way more adaptable than excel sheets. Excel sheets are only reliable and accurate for the one who has created it but not for the one who is new to a particular excel sheet. A new resource in your team might have to initiate from scratch. 

Incapable of providing perfect insights – It is of great challenge to visualize test data with several different excel sheets. You will have to go through a long and time taking process starting from obtaining data from different excel sheets and then to integrate them all. Moreover, summarizing data will also be a time-consuming task and can pose many errors and glitches. Besides, if you do not want to make complex testing decisions based on inappropriate or imperfect data, you have to implement the use of special test management software. 

Scalability challenges – Another reason that clearly sums up the transition from excel to test case management software is that as the organization grows, the data stored in the spreadsheet will become more dispersed. Adding more team members to the test project means adding more and more excel sheets. You may need to modify the data in the excel worksheet as the team size increases. Excel worksheets are prone to human error, which makes test case management more difficult.

Reporting issues – Test managers may often need to ask each tester for daily updates of their test execution status, sometimes even hourly when approaching the release version. Also creating test reports for sprints or releases is a task in itself because it needs to organize information from different excel spreadsheets, many tests run, tests passed and failed tests, defect IDs, blocked due to various reasons Test, etc. Using exquisite excel formulas or macros may not generate very complex reports, and any other information needed or needed will mean returning to each excel and sorting it out again.

Final Thoughts 

Since testing is the need of the hour for many organizations. Compromising it in fear of investing heavy costs and efforts would be the stupidest thing an organization could do. Because implementing the use of test case management tools neither involves heavy costs nor they demand extensive efforts. All that an organization has to do is to carefully select a test management software that aligns best with the business and testing requirements. Fortunes of test management software are unpredictable if the tool is being used to its full potential.

About the author

Rubab is a marketer-turned-content writer, passionate about how storytelling and targeted messaging create business changing content. With hands on experience in writing blog posts on Information Technology trends and news. As a Content Executive for an IT firm, she is responsible for creating well-researched blog posts that would help the firm, increase its awareness, online traffic and reach. When she isn’t working, you’ll find Rubab reading novels of her favorite author and doing English poetry.

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