IEEE standards are most widely accepted in the software testing industry. However, it is not mandatory for all software testing processes to follow the standard. Software testing has many different stages, but we’ll cover test planning, test specification, and test reporting in this article.
Test plan is the most important phase in the software testing process. It initiates the process and describes the scope of the test assignment, the approach methodology, the resources required for testing and the project plan or timetable. The test plan outlines the test items, the testing of system features or checking the functionality of the system, the test tasks, the responsibility matrix and the risks associated with the process. The test task is accomplished by testing different types of test data. The steps followed when testing the system are program testing, string testing, system testing, system documentation, and user acceptance testing. I will discuss each of these in my next “Software System Testing” article.
The test specification document helps refine the test approach planned for executing the test plan. It identifies the test cases, procedures and the pass / fail criteria for the assignment. The test case specification document outlines the actual values required as input parameters in the testing process and the expected output of the test results. It also identifies the various limitations related to the test case. It is important to note that test cases are reusable components and one test case can be used in different test designs. The testing procedure outlines all the processes required to test the system and implement the test cases.
During the test phase, all activities that take place are documented. There are several reasons why clear documentation is required during testing. It helps the development team to understand the bugs and fix them quickly. If there is a change in the testing team, it will help the new team members to quickly understand the process and aid in a quick transition. The overall testing process summary report helps the entire project team understand the initial design and development flaws and ensure the same mistakes are not repeated again. There are four types of test documents. The transmission report that specifies the test events sent from the development team to the test team, the test log which is a very important document and is used to document the events that occurred during execution, the test incident report with a list of test events that requires further investigation and the test report summarizing the overall testing activities.
Many software testing companies follow the IEEE standard for software testing when conducting their testing projects. Software application development companies may have their own testing templates that they use for their testing requirements. Outsourcing the testing requirements to an external vendor is a great help in improving the quality of the software. An unbiased view also helps to discover the many different loopholes in the software system.