Test Planning Phase

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11 Mar, 2021


Regardless of the scale of the project or staff, planning for test cases is an essential aspect of software testing. A test plan/strategy guarantees product coverage, aligns testing with project objectives, and keeps things on track. The following elements are likely to be included in a good test plan:

  • Needs of the company
  • To be evaluated/ tested features manually and through a QA testing software
  • Features that will not be evaluated
  • Approach, requirements, and deliverables for testing
  • The test environment’s characteristics
  • Each tester’s specific responsibilities and assignments

Making a test plan in one paper is a simple way to keep testing on track with a timeline, budget, and customer specifications.

Test strategy should still be deliberate, not haphazard. Fortunately, there are few inventive ways to split up what appears to be an impossible job. To get a next-level bird’s eye view, here’s how to prioritize more meaningfully during test preparation.

Keep track of the process of exploration

Any QA director creating a test plan must take into account the project’s current documents as well as the app’s actual discovery process.

For agile programs, you can have little or no written knowledge and must instead read about the project at different points in the lifecycle or explore it blindly. Irrespective of how much you know upfront, it’s important to keep track of a new app’s discovery process.

Try documenting your initial discovery in a format that your QA testing team would easily understand. You can make a mind map of various features and their purposes, record video and/or audio, or merely jot down your initial thoughts and then arrange them. This information will be used to help you segment projects and add new testers to the project later. Cool isn’t it? 🙂

When analyzing risk, use a team-based strategy

Risk estimation is something that testers naturally do, but it’s mostly done in an unstructured manner. Have you ever been through a mental checklist of client expectations, high-risk functions, and any updates since the last build? That’s an excellent way to begin a test cycle.

Putting any framework around the risk analysis method, on the other hand, is much easier. Try getting in staff from other departments to review risks in a more thorough manner. Gather a market consultant, a customer service agent, and a developer for a risk assessment conference. Organizing other points of view gives you the most insight into the method you’re testing.

You will assess the probability of failure and the effect of each function by working together. Coordinate the risk analysis findings by the features that are more likely to malfunction and the ones that would do the most damage if they did.

Make mind maps for your products 

Mind maps will be used to document customer questions, monitor the research process, and provide a better understanding of the product as a whole.

You most likely learned how to create mind maps in elementary school. Simply start linking different elements and establishing relationships between features and functionality on a large sheet of paper. Mind charts, whether digital or analog, are a powerfully engaging way to coordinate any kind of work, but they’re especially useful when it comes to software testing, which can easily become daunting.

Mind maps can help you visualize a product such that individual training assignments can be assigned more easily. Mind maps, however, help you to watch an app’s coverage.

Plan the tests around user personas

You should make a mind map around user personas – Yes, they are that important! Rather than categorizing the product by functions, categorize it by consumers (and what those users are trying to achieve).

Somebody who clearly needs to rotate a picture, someone who wants to crop, someone who needs to make and print a birthday card, or someone who is creating an infographic, for example, might all use photo editing software. It goes on and on.

Then you break down those stories into stages, layering those user-based steps on top of other methods for comprehensive product coverage.

Reverse the process: Prioritize the most difficult test cases 

Is there a tight deadline? If you have a limited budget? Fewer resources?

Perhaps you don’t have time for both scripted and manual tests to run concurrently. Perhaps you don’t have time to do testing based on both functionality and user personas.

When you have a strict deadline and need to accommodate a whole product, you must work backward. Consider the photo editing example above. Let’s presume a user needs to crop, rotate, and download an image in a format other than the one they originally posted.

When you start with the most complex usage cases (and watch each step), you’ll see that you’ve covered the majority of the software. Then you should look at some holes and fill them in with shorter, simpler test cases.

Scripting out the most time-consuming test cases first and covering them early in the test schedule helps the whole project to proceed even more quickly.

Prioritizing a couple of test cases can be done manually. However, when the test cases are large in numbers, you need QA testing software like Kualitee to have your back at all times. It’ll help you align your test cases, manage them according to their individual priority, all of which will assist your testing team in delivering the final product before the deadline.

Distinguish between innovative and repetitive activities 

A mixed approach to testing is beneficial to most applications, particularly mobile apps. Regression tests, scripted tests, and manual experimentation combine to offer comprehensive coverage that guarantees consistency and achieves market goals. 

The best mix can vary depending on the project, but it’s still important to figure out which roles include scripting and simple pass/fail requirements, and which can be seen as hard cases—creative problems that are more difficult to locate. 

You will delegate exploratory and scripted cases to each tester based on their ability level. This gives testers a dynamic break from scripts that can be tedious at times, as well as a wide range of perspectives on usability and reliability. In other words, grant testers the freedom to truly attempt to break something while ensuring that all of the fundamental measures are protected.

Conclusion

To make the SDLC cycle a success, incorporate some of these prioritization tips during test preparation. When you’re concerned with making the most of the product, you’re aware of customer needs, and you’re aware of risks, figuring out how to better manage your time and money becomes a lot easier.

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About the author

Hassan is an avid reader. Fiction novels to technology blogs, his zealous knack of absorbing new words is his entrancing trait. Grasping the intricate concepts of technology and writing prodigious tech blogs serves as a quintessential example of his ability. Content marketing is his ultimate nirvana, a place idiosyncratic to many but a déjà vu to Hassan.

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