5 Ways Software Testing Tools Save You Money Over Excel

by Thijs Kok, on October 12, 2022

AdobeStock_183077832-min

Change can be hard. We get it. 

But when it comes to delivering quality, secure, and timely software to your customers, sometimes taking the well-worn path toward your destination may leave your team putting in more miles than expected. 

This is exactly what many software development teams realize after switching from Excel to a test management platform as part of their software testing tools suite.

Although using Excel is a tried-and-true method of test management that can still make sense for some testers and developers, most are being held back by it—sometimes in ways they do not even realize.

That’s why the TestMonitor team rounded up five key ways a test management platform is designed to outperform Excel for your quality assurance (QA) program.

Let’s dive in:

The Allure of Excel as Part of Your Software Testing Tools Suite

Whether it is because Excel is an industry staple or for other reasons like cost or ease of use, modifying and rearranging the iconic spreadsheet application for test management isn’t a rarity.

And it's easy to see why: Excel is nearly ubiquitous, has a quick ramp-up time, and seems endlessly flexible, especially compared with other Microsoft and business systems.

However, once you learn what it takes to have a robust test management program that is powerful enough to track a portfolio of development efforts, deliver the level of reporting your team needs, and simplify the administrative elements of testing, the cracks around Excel quickly begin to show.

5 Ways a Test Management Platform Outperforms Excel

Any craftsman, artist, or developer will tell you that having the right tool not only makes their job easier, but also helps shape a better end product. Having the ideal tools allows professionals to take more pride in their work and can differentiate it from the competition.

The same applies to QA professionals, who have to be well versed not only in software development and the technical elements of design, but also people and project management. Having the right tool can help with all of these elements and more, including:

1. Security

Macros are a core part of every automated Excel spreadsheet. However, these custom bits of code and functionality are often full of bugs, leaving your team frustrated or, even worse, your work exposed to cybercriminals that specifically target macros. 

It is also easy to accidentally send an Excel file to the wrong recipients, overwrite or delete the file. Excel files can be stolen, putting your test data in the wrong hands. Unfortunately, Excel’s password protection is also not known for its strength.

2. Automation
Go beyond copy/paste and format paste and leverage the built-in test case libraries, reporting functionality, and customizable dashboards that come with a professional-grade test management platform. Industry-leading tools also make it easy to import, export, and prepare test data to accelerate each phase of the testing process.

3. Functionality

An in-house Excel guru is likely a mixture of MacGyver and Steve Jobs, finding new ways to translate complex test management principles into a spreadsheet application. These complicated workarounds and fragile elements can ultimately slow innovation and limit your team’s ability to track progress. 

For example, instead of having to paste links from other drives into a spreadsheet or bloat your file, test management tools make it easy to save pictures and videos alongside test cases. This greatly speeds up remediation and makes collaboration easier. 

4. Interoperability

Even for groups that use SharePoint and Office 365, Excel has obvious limits in making it easy for teams to access key features, share data, and communicate updates. Add in different devices and platforms and things can get even more complicated, especially if you attempt to go beyond the basic integrations Excel has with other software development tools.

5. Auditing and Authentication

Although Office 365 has made improvements to authentication, version control and auditability are difficult in Excel without making multiple versions of each document. Not only does this make it complicated to know what updates were made by whom and when, but it also makes it hard to revert changes and handle traceability from requirement to sign-off.

Elevate Your Test Management with TestMonitor

If your testing team is looking for just-enough functionality or a short-term test management solution, then Excel may fit the bill.

However, as your organization matures its software development lifecycle (SDLC), introduces new methodologies, relies on remote teams, and uses increasingly complicated test cases and test runs, it becomes imperative to graduate to an industry-leading test management platform like TestMonitor.

TestMonitor is designed by software developers, for software developers. We are so confident that our platform will make a difference in your workflow that we want you to check out our ROI calculator to see just how much. 

Measure your ROI with TestMonitor here.

Calculate-your-ROI-with-Test-Monitor

Download test management tool checklist

Want the latest news, tips and advice in next-level software testing? Subscribe to our blog!