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Wintertainment 2020 - Day 7: Improving Testing Quality With Better Test Management




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Improving Testing Quality With Better Test Management 


To kick things off, test management is the process in which you plan, develop, execute, and report on your testing activities. Essentially, you are considering all the testing activity that occurs during each stage of the software development lifecycle, and  reporting on the metrics. 


Traditionally, a common way testers have performed test management was through Excel spreadsheets or Word documents. However, this is a manual process that requires constant management because we are retrofitting a non-test-management business tool for a different use case. Additionally, without a live sync with your defect and requirement management tool (Jira), there is no clear visibility into the test coverage metrics for your feature requirements, and the defects raised from each of those individual test executions. 


It needs to involve Jira 


On the other hand, we are seeing the trend of Agile teams relying on Jira to manage their testing processes by documenting their requirements and defects in the form of issue types. We’re also seeing more teams adopt test automation to automate their testing within CI/CD processes. Inevitably, keeping the manual and automated test cases in sync can be a challenge, especially if the automation testing tools don’t natively integrate with Jira or your test management solution.  


Finally, we arrive at our current state, where we’ve managed to automate some of our most repetitive and time-consuming tests, but are still left asking the question, “So now what?” 

These may be the problems you still face: 

  • We are still doing QA on our manual test cases. 
  • We still need to establish test coverage back to our requirements. 
  • We still need to raise defects as needed (for both our manual and automated test executions). 

This is where we can introduce Zephyr into our workflow as a test management tool, because test management and test automation aren’t mutually exclusive. 

Zephyr as a test management solution offers: 

  • Single, centralized repository to aggregate both manual and automated test cases. 
  • Link between test cases and Jira requirements. 
  • Live Jira integration to raise and link defects to test executions as needed. 

It’s all about improving efficiency 


The key benefits of a test management solution are varied, but at a high level, the main component is efficiency.If you already live in Jira every day, these changes will not be groundbreaking for you; it will blend into your workflow by providing you with additional test management functionalities (like traceability reports).  


You get faster bug tracking (improving productivity), and you can connect all the moving parts together. In turn, when it comes time to make an informed software release decision, you can say with confidence whether or not a given feature requirement has been tested, and trace the pertinent defects to confirm that they have been resolved. 


With automation tools that integrate with Zephyr, like TestComplete and ReadyAPI (to run your UI and API tests), the process above is much more seamless and doesn’t seem like two different motions. On top of that, integrating with CI/CD tools like Jenkins makes test management and reporting even easier.  



For each feature requirement that requires testing, we will see every execution of both manual and automated test cases that are mapped. It gives you valuable insight into the traceability metrics from within our test management solution. 





Make the process easier 


You may experience a lot of frustration as your organization goes through an Agile transformation. There may be new initiatives for faster release cycles, revenue loss from bugs in production, and daily hindrances from the lack of a cohesive toolset.  


If any of the pain points above resonate with you, implanting a more robust test management solution is something that could help as the new year kicks off in 2021.  


Further Reading 



What do you think? Comment below! 


We’d love to hear about your experience with Test Management alongside Test Automation! 

  1. Do you currently use a test management solution within your organization? If yes, how effectively have they been implemented into your business?  
  2. Do you currently use a test automation solution within your organization? If yes, how are you integrating it into your test management solution? 
  3. What issues do you face onboarding your users in both test management and automation?  Steep learning curve? Lack of integration (i.e two separate motions)?