A testing cycle is a set of various processes that QA teams use to deliver quality feedback to the developers. It is used to highlight the functional and non-functional discrepancies between the user requirements and what development teams delivered. There are different stages of a test cycle, based on the agile testing pyramid. However, the main purpose of a software testing life cycle is to provide feedback to the developers in time. Identifying defects as early as possible in the software testing life cycle is essential for the following two reasons:
- Maximize Efficiency – It helps in maximizing the efficiency of the software development process by providing early feedback to all the project stakeholders. IT Developers can address these issues before time and save their time and resources.
- Minimize the Risks – It minimizes the risk of failure when an app is sent into production. It also provides insights to organizations when their app is running in production and the business is investing in A/B testing.
Testing minimizes the test cycle time by automating repetitive tests in the CI/CD pipeline where continuous quality tests are run. This results in greater testing efficiency and high-quality build, which can achieve an agile testing approach. However, test managers use test case management software to manage writing test cases, test case execution, etc.
We understand finding and reporting a bug correctly, both activities hold the same importance. With a proper defect reporting process in place, QA teams can identify and reproduce the issue and get them fixed before it goes into production. In case a defect report is incomplete, the developer may waste time in understanding what the defect actually is. However, this time can be saved by producing good bug reports. The downside of an ineffective bug report is that it can cause an unavoidable delay in a software release, which can negatively affect the relationship with the customer. Since a bug report is a form of communication between a tester, developer, and other stakeholders, these tools can be linked to the test case management software that contains necessary details of all the test cases. These tools ensure that defect reports are as accurate and possible.
Defect Tracking Tools
Defect tracking is a continuous process that focuses on tracking issues, bugs, and defects through a software development lifecycle (SDLC). There are different types of defect tracking tools that QA teams can pick from, according to their project requirements. A defect management tool can be used to capture requirements, user stories, epics, new improvements, and other types of issues. Jira can be used to set up boards, allowing flexibility to manage, view, and report defects. QA teams can easily collaborate with other users by using Continuous Integration (CI) tools to fetch data and integrate other tools to share the data with their team members.
Why Reporting is Critical to Software Testing?
Without any doubt, reporting is one of the most critical phases in a software testing cycle. It allows easy evaluation of the efficiency of development teams and their timeline for the development process so that they can make necessary improvements to it. With the help of dashboards and reports, testing data is visualized in a form that is easily understandable by developers, testers, and managers.
Test managers can track defects with test reports like test execution charts, that show which defects have an impact on most of the test cases. With the right test case management software, teams can easily share these reports with their project stakeholders and help them in making well-informed decisions for product quality assurance.
Both, reporting and test metrics are an important ingredient of a testing strategy for the following three reasons:
- It improves communication and increases collaboration between the development and QA teams
- It enlists all details related to testing executions, top-priority defects, and other key testing elements.
- It provides deep sights into the efficiency and productivity of all the processes involved in a software development project.
Why should Test Managers know which Cycle has the most number of Defects?
Test managers need to know which test cycle has the most number of defects for software quality assurance purposes. There is a wide variety of metrics that managers can use to measure quality assurance success. A test execution snapshot chart is used to assess the test execution status. It is one of these metrics that depict the total number of test executions that were run as passed, failed, incomplete, blocked, and unexecuted. These charts work as visual aids in the daily status meeting with teams and they have raw numbers. However, due to these bars capturing test manager’s attention, they tend to work faster and more efficiently. These test execution status charts also help teams in understanding how the rate of testing and rate of defect finding can be compared with desired values. Considering the defect counts and test execution rates, test managers come up with a theoretical curve. This can be compared with the actual values that can be used to change test processes in order to meet their desired results.
Summing up, defects are a norm in any software development process. It is impossible to produce a 100% bug-free application, but QA teams work devotedly to remove as many bugs as they identify in their testing processes. Test managers need to stay ahead of their teams, which is why they require finding out which cycles in their testing had the most defects and which did not. It helps them in producing better builds, and faster quality releases.