How to Improve Efficiency & Consistency in Test Management

  May 09, 2024

Software testing can feel like you're walking a tightrope—striving to uphold impeccable quality standards while the clock ticks towards your next release. It’s a daunting challenge to make sure every test is planned and executed with speed, all while hoping there are no blind spots in your process.

Enter test management. It’s a great way to ensure your tests remain organized, efficient, and consistent. And of course, so you can report on this hard work to leadership. But what if there was a way to optimize your process further, saving you more time and headaches?

Continue reading to learn some test management basics as well as a secret weapon for improving efficiency and consistency in test management.

Let's Talk Test Management

At the heart of organized software testing lies robust test management. It aids in the planning, coordination, and execution of tests, guaranteeing software meets all requirements and quality standards. It also empowers testers and QA team leaders to oversee all test activities in one centralized location. This includes:

  • Gathering requirements  
  • Defining test cases  
  • Planning and executing tests  
  • Managing test automation  
  • Creating and tracking defects  
  • Reporting on test activity

By implementing a robust test management solution, teams can identify vulnerabilities, mitigate risks, and deliver products that surpass customer expectations.

Enter Call to Test

The secret weapon in question is “call to test,” which helps in the “defining test cases” part of test management. It allows the reuse of existing test cases by inserting one test case within another.

By "calling" a test, you save time, maintain consistency, and keep your tests organized. Think of it like using a store-bought cookie dough instead of making the dough from scratch every time—simple, efficient, and smart.

For example, imagine you have a basic test for logging into your app, named "LoginProcedure." This includes straightforward steps like navigating to the login page, entering credentials, and verifying you're logged in.

Now, say you're testing something that needs a logged-in user, like editing a profile. Instead of rewriting the login steps every time, you simply call a test to include "LoginProcedure" at the start of your new test, "EditUserProfile."

Here’s the top benefits of using call to test:

  • Maintain consistency: It helps ensure uniformity across your test cases. It allows for the reuse of steps, expected outcomes, and specific details from one test case in another. So, when test scenarios share common steps or expected results, reusing test cases keeps everything the same.   
  • Save time: The ability to insert existing test cases into new ones bypasses the need to start from square one, significantly reducing both time and effort.
  • Fewer updates to test cases: When changes are made to a called test case, these updates automatically reflect in all the called test cases. This ensures modifications are consistently applied across the board.
  • Tracking dependencies: This provides a clear view of the interconnections between test cases, revealing which ones are integrated within others. It offers a comprehensive understanding of the test landscape, ensuring all pieces fit together seamlessly.

When Should You Use It?

Call to test works best in a few scenarios within the testing process. And understanding when to leverage this capability can significantly enhance your testing strategy.

  • Testing Common Functionalities: It’s ideal for working with large systems or applications sharing similar functionalities—like user authentication, access permissions, or data retrieval. It allows you to maintain a singular, consistent approach to testing these elements, regardless of the module or application being tested.
  • Reusing Login, Navigation, or Data Setup Steps: These are some of the most frequently repeated actions in software testing. Instead of recreating these steps for every test case, call to test lets you define them once and reuse them across multiple test scenarios. This not only saves time but also reduces the likelihood of errors in replicating these steps.
  • Combining Modular Test Cases: In testing scenarios where multiple functionalities need to be verified, call to test allows you to combine modular test cases into comprehensive testing sequences. This modular approach allows for more flexible, scalable, and manageable test suites, enabling testers to cover more ground with less effort.

How to Utilize Call to Test

To make the most of the call-to-test feature, you'll want to equip yourself with a test management tool with this capability.

SmartBear offers Zephyr Enterprise, which is a standalone, comprehensive test management solution. It’s designed to turbocharge your testing process with complete and customizable test planning, execution, and reporting. This helps testing teams weed out those elusive blind spots, spot bugs faster, and adopt a proactive shift-left testing approach. The result? Not only does it speed up your project's progress, but it also significantly boosts product quality.

And (you guessed it), Zephyr Enterprise comes equipped with the call-to-test feature, allowing you to leverage all these benefits and streamline your testing process even further.

See it for Yourself

Navigating that tightrope of fast-tracking software delivery while still upholding quality is quite the undertaking. However, Zephyr Enterprise makes this balancing act achievable with its user-friendly approach to test management.

With call-to-test at your fingertips, the path to enhanced efficiency and unwavering consistency is within reach. See for yourself how it enhances your testing strategy, enabling your team to deliver outstanding software.

Try Zephyr Enterprise for free.