Optimizing Test Plans and Test Cases
Focusing on the end-user, user acceptance testing (UAT) is the perfect technique to get their feedback. As you may recall in our opening “feline” example, the movie Cats movie seemed a success right up to the point when moviegoers actually saw it in theaters. Quality UAT tools must effectively interact with the “bread and butter” of the project—test plans and test cases.
To maximize UAT within the QA process, you have to know where your test is going. What’s the plan? Who is involved? When the time comes to plan the test, the team must have confidence that the UAT tool leverages intuitive navigation and performs the proper steps in the proper order.
Your UAT tool and process must avoid establishing an objective that’s either ill-defined, confusing, or not defined at all. The test plan must specify what success looks like. All-star planning tactics direct your testing approach, detail key testing practices, and define the responsibilities and expectations of the team, as well as the testers.
Your test objective should be simple enough to define in a sentence. By understanding the need to be met, your team can better understand how to interact and communicate the test outcome with users. Finally, once the objective and stated needs are crystalized, deployment of specific tools can be launched to cover requirements, risks, test cases, and dependencies.
A quality tool must optimize the entire testing process: test cases, requirement/risk management, test runs, results analysis, and issues management. Such tools will also offer multiple runs and milestone cloning, as well as comprehensive result tracking, smart reporting, filter and visualization options, intuitive user integration, and third-party integration for formats such as Jira, DevOps, and Slack.
As you develop a test plan, ask lots of questions: What does a successful testing look like? What are key warning signs and risks? How will we develop an interactive communication platform for team members and testers? What are user expectations and fears? What toolkit best serves the needs of the project?
Finally, test plans should include the following:
- Functions to be tested
- Exclusions and limitations
- Testing approach and methodology
- Test types and their dependencies
- Requirement tracing
- Pass/fail standards
- Resources and testing timetables
- Contingency plans and release benchmarks
- Test cases required to finalize a full system test
A test case is a collection of test instructions in which the outcome is either the test passes or fails. Test cases fuel the next actions in the process which, in turn, keep the results focused. Test cases define the difference between a well-designed test process or one containing numerous defects and errors. Test cases examine one scenario of functionality for one requirement.
To ensure elevated QA, focus on where defects are most likely to occur when developing test cases across the UAT process. How? Consult and trust experienced testers and designers.