Test Management in an Agile World: Managing Tests in Excel and Beyond
The world of software testing has changed a lot in recent years, with an increasing number of organizations moving towards an Agile approach to software development.
In an Agile world, teams are being asked to move faster — reducing the length of time to delivery while still continuing to improve the quality of each release.
At the same time, they are faced with increased pressure to reduce testing costs.
The agile testing process also means that different testers, with vastly different skillsets, are getting involved in the testing process. In fact, if you look at the trends over the past few years, testing is moving further to the left — with more and more developers being incorporated into the testing cycle earlier on.
As a result, many times, we see manual testers, automation engineers, and developers all contributing to the testing process.
The needs of these three audiences are different, especially when selecting testing automation tools.
Some of the ways in which these three personas select an automated tool include:
- Manual Testers: Record and replay is crucial for manual testers, especially those who are new to automation. Being able to use the same recorded script with variety of input data can come in handy when trying to identify and fix problems across multiple environments.
- Automation Engineers: For automation engineers, robust support for scripting languages, integrations with CI systems, and the ability to scale tests easily is important.
- Developers: Implementing testing into the development process requires the ability to conduct tests within IDEs, such as Eclipse and Visual Studio.
The question then arises, in an Agile landscape, where different testers with different skill sets are getting involved, how does test management fit into the process?
In many cases, we still hear that test management is a blocker to the Agile process — impeding the speed at which software is delivered.
However, when executed correctly with the right tools, test management is the best way to ensure that the optimal quality of software is maintained when it is released to the marketplace.
By improving efficiency and reducing waste in the testing process, test management helps to better prioritize while simultaneously reducing the time teams spend on problems after the software is delivered.
While the approach to testing has changed in recent years, the primary tool for managing these tests has not.
Today, a majority of teams are still using Excel spreadsheets to organize and manage test cases. And while this old school method of test management still makes sense for some, a growing number of teams continue to be held back by their reliance on Excel.
That’s why we created our latest eBook, Test Management in an Agile World: Implementing a Robust Test Management Strategy in Excel and Beyond.
The stickiness to Excel just proves the great value associated when using excel for test management activities.
However, before we go into that direction, there are other few questions that we would like to touch upon.
In the eBook, we answer important questions to help implement a test management strategy that works in an Agile world, including:
- What are the benefits of test management in an Agile world?
- Why is Excel still the most widely used tool for test management?
- What do teams miss out on when they rely on Excel for test management?
- When is the right time to make the switch to a test management tool?
- How to choose the right test management solution?
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