Software QA FYI - SQAFYI

The Insider's Test Management Tool

By: Mark Keller

Learn what tools the pros are using to test software. How will TestDirector help improve your business?

The testing stage of software development is definitely the most complex and arguably the most important. From my experience most organizations break down and drop the ball during the crucial testing stage. Success requires very effective test management.

Most internal company organizations lack the training and time to effectively act out this vital stage in the software development process. Test management is the most difficult aspect of effective testing because testing requires input from various channels at differing times. Not only do you need to carefully map out tasks and responsibilities but you also need to know what the performance expectations are. I have found test management tools an invaluable resource in accomplishing these tasks. There are management tools for nearly all aspects of software testing including capturing requirements, storing test scripts, and defect management.

There are many different test management tools to choose from. The leader in the industry is by far Mercury Interactive TestDirector. Mercury is the global leader in business technology optimization (BTO). Mercury Interactive is one of the largest and fastest growing enterprise software companies in the world. Estimates show nearly 90% of Fortune 100 companies, and even several government agencies around the world rely on Mercury Interactive to fulfill their BTO strategies. This is a company that you can rely on for high quality and consistent results. Their TestDirector program creates an uncomplicated way to execute and manage the testing process. The primary advantage of using a test management tool is to help you manage your testing in a quick and effective manner. These tools facilitate communication between involved parties and simultaneously cut down on the total amount of time spent developing and running tests. Common features of test management tools include the ability to repeat the process for gathering requirements, scheduling tests, analyzing results, and managing any defects. This adds confidence that your software is going meet performance expectations. Some common questions Mercury Interactive recommends that you ask several questions before using TestDirector: Does your organization lack the software testing tools to deploy high-quality applications quickly and effectively? Does your organization have the appropriate level of communication, organization, documentation, and structure in place for every testing project? Do you have a consistent, repeatable testing process? Are you leveraging strategic sourcing initiatives for quality assurance? Answering these questions will help you better evaluate your organizations need for test management tools.

TestDirector has four modules: requirements, test plan, test lab and defects management which are integrated to enable a smooth flow of information between various aspects of the total testing process. It is completely web-enabled in order to efficiently support communication and cooperation among testing teams that are dispersed throughout a company. Utilizing a test management tool is truly a wise decision. The efficiency and reliability it brings to an organization exuberates confidence and control that will then be emulate in employee performance. As processes of integration smoothly take place employees gain greater trust in management and the of the company’s ability to be competitive and adapt. Complete and thorough software testing with the help of TestDirector will keep the business running smoothly during and after implementation. The potential risk of after implementation finding bugs and glitches will cost you money to fix and a lot of productivity. Businesses are run on systems. Good businesses have good systems. Using test management software will ensure that your systems are built on a solid foundation.

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The Insider's Test Management Tool