Various people have unique perspectives of testing. Some may suggest that testing only validates the user interface, while others underscore its defect identification role. Nonetheless, I sought to structure the significance of testing into the subsequent 10 points.
Examine each statement exhaustively to the finish. It holds deep implications that could be beneficial at all stages of your project’s testing life cycle.
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Regardless of whether testing is manual or automated, every tester needs to prioritize quality. A proficient tester constantly invests their efforts in improving the product’s overall quality rather than merely concentrating on defect identification.
What You Can Expect to Learn:
- What Does Software Testing Involve?
- #1. Quality is the focus of testing
- #2. Testing revolves around ideas
- #3. Testing requires thinking from a customer’s perspective
- #4. Testing is concerned with coverage
- #5. Testing focuses on locating defects
- #6. Testing values simplicity
- #7. Testing involves collaboration
- #8. Testing necessitates documentation
- #9. Testing demands time management
- #10. Testing is influenced by attitude
- Final Thoughts:
What Does Software Testing Involve?
Drawing upon my past experiences, I have encapsulated the core nature of testing into the following crucial points:
#1. Quality is at the heart of testing
Testing is primarily about delivering a quality product to the end-users.
Quality in terms of usability
Quality in terms of visual appeal
Quality in terms of data integrity
Quality in terms of security
#2. Testing revolves around ideas
An application can be scrutinized in several ways. Every person can suggest a unique approach and notion. As testers, it is our duty to evaluate and opt for the most appropriate strategy.
Some instances demand methodical testing, while others call for spontaneous or ad-hoc testing to reveal problems. Appraising distinct strategies before initiating testing is crucial. Applications dealing with massive data ought to be tested differently from those handling many users.
#3. Testing requires thinking from a customer’s perspective
A common advice often thrown around is: “Step into the customer’s shoes”.
During the application testing phase, we should adapt the customer’s viewpoint. We have to assess the paths that actual customers would typically traverse. Ensure the labels/messages are user-friendly, allowing the customer to make sense of any potential problems.
The application ought to be designed to help users navigate through the process flawlessly. Accounting for negative scenarios is just as important as viewing from the customer’s lens. Remember, not all end-users will have expertise in using the application and are likely to make mistakes. The system should be able to deal properly with such adverse scenarios.
#4. Testing is concerned with coverage
Wider coverage leads to a product of superior quality.
Enumerate and carry out all potential test combinations. Unearth even the most unlikely combinations that customers might make. Formulate a requirement traceability matrix. Admittedly, not everyone adheres to this practice; however, it is recommended to create one, formally or informally. List all boundary conditions and negative test cases. Prioritize your test cases. Conduct at least one regression cycle for Priority-1/Priority-2 test cases before wrapping up the quality assurance (QA) cycle.
#5. Testing focuses on locating defects
A defect is essentially a deviation from the requirements to the actual result. This principle pertains particularly when testing against specified requirements. Even when probing negative scenarios or undertaking ad-hoc testing, defects can still be unearthed.
Defects should be instantly reported with all applicable data. Minor defects, particularly those solely related to the user interface, are sometimes missed. However, addressing every valid defect enhances the product’s overall quality.
#6. Testing values simplicity
Creating a complex application with no real function is utterly futile. Instead, we should advocate for minimalist design that even novices can operate.
Suggest system enhancements. Recommend modifications to the layout, labels, button names, and messages. Users invariably prefer systems that are straightforward, user-friendly, and simple to understand. Simplicity is the key factor.
#7. Testing involves collaboration
Testing is not an isolated activity.
It necessitates collaboration with other departments, such as requirements, design, development, and process teams.
Imagine submitting a defect that other teams decline to resolve despite being valid. In such situations, our obligation remains unfulfilled. We should not readily accept reasons provided by different teams unless they are documented and scrutinized by stakeholders.
#8. Testing necessitates documentation
Documentation holds a vital role during the testing phase.
Document the test scenarios and test cases. Generate a traceability matrix. Create checklists for finished test activities and UI testing. Save screenshots and evidence. These documents will prove to be priceless for future reference, especially if another round of testing is needed. Document all defects using utilities like Microsoft Excel or defect management tools. Record all test data and environment particulars as well.
There is an ongoing debate about the sufficient level of documentation. It is largely project-dependent. However, taking into consideration the points mentioned earlier, skipping documentation entirely is not advised, with the exception of Agile projects that may adhere to other documentation methodologies.
#9. Testing demands time management
Identifying defects later in the testing cycle influences both cost and time. The sooner we spot crucial defects during testing, the more time we have for further refinement and product enhancement.
There’s a constant pressure on testers to manage their time efficiently. We have to prepare test data beforehand and reproduce it in case of failures. At the same time, we must track defect status, test case progress, and regression checks. Balancing these tasks truly tests the time management skills of testers.
=> For more advice, read about time and project management here.
#10. Testing is influenced by attitude
This might not be the final point, but adopting the right attitude is extremely important for any successful tester. The appropriate attitude should be employed correctly to effectively carry out one’s duties.
In the cutthroat world of today, remaining current is essential. Equally crucial, however, is to have a sound understanding of the foundational principles.
Without the proper groundwork and approach, all the strenuous efforts would be for naught.
Many believe testing to be a repetitive and dull task. As someone with over nine years invested in software testing, I can assertively say that it is an interesting and gratifying job.
Challenges may surface in discerning requirements, the testability of these requirements, and the feasibility of their implementation within the existing framework/architecture. Other hurdles include defining a testing environment, ensuring coverage, and managing dependencies on external components during testing.
Nevertheless, it is vital to surmount these challenges successfully.
Remember, you can only excel when you genuinely enjoy what you’re doing. 🙂
About the author:This informative content is the creation of Sandhya Rani N, a seasoned STH author with over nine years of experience in software testing, spanning both manual and automated testing engagements.
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