To conduct effective and successful testing of any software, there are special management techniques that help to track the testing process in order to improve its quality and efficiency. Such techniques are called test monitoring and control. In this article, we will look in more detail at what they are, what metrics are, and why they are important.
Test progress monitoring
Test progress monitoring
- Posted by: Admin
Test monitoring is simply the process of tracking the testing progress, its compliance with predefined goals, estimating future actions based on the obtained metrics, and providing feedback to stakeholders.
Thus, monitoring is used to ensure that the current status of tasks meets the pre-established plan and to verify that the testing process is conducted properly. For example, it is important to check whether each task is performed exactly on time without delays or is ahead of schedule. So, the first thing to do at the beginning of the project is to include the evaluation process in the monitoring plan to have a clear idea of how the work will be evaluated.
The process of test control is no less important. It is performed based on the results of test monitoring.
At this stage, the priorities of testing activities are reviewed, the schedule is changed, and the test environment is reorganized. All of this is used to improve the quality and efficiency of any testing-related activity. Test control helps ensure that the testing process follows the intended goals and meets the pre-established criteria. In other words, if the results of test monitoring reveal problematic and weak points that may hinder the release of a quality product, then test control comes into play to prevent such an outcome.
So as we can see, testing control goes hand in hand with monitoring.
In the process of monitoring testing, it is impossible to do anything without a plan, and this is where tracking test progress begins. To create such a plan, the key point is to determine in advance which test metrics should be involved and when they should be collected. For example, weekly or monthly metrics collection can be chosen, or it can be limited to collection and analysis at the beginning and end of the project.
Metrics can be used in such methods of assessing progress as comparing the actual indicator obtained during the monitoring process with a predetermined one. Setting a progress measurement criterion helps to determine which indicators are acceptable and which ones need to be improved.
In the process of monitoring testing, collecting all the necessary metrics allows you to see clearly whether:
Metrics in testing represent indicators that evaluate the progress and quality of the testing process in the form of numerical values. They can be presented as a percentage or a ratio of two characteristics.
With the help of metrics, we determine if the progress is on track to the expected result and detect weaknesses. In addition, it helps to visually demonstrate problems that are difficult to put into words for full understanding. A problem looks more significant and constructive if it is supported by measurable indicators.
Before planning which metrics to use, it is important to formulate the questions that need to be answered. Here we have listed some of them:
- How long will the testing take?
- Will the testing be completed on time?
- Is the testing process proceeding according to schedule?
- How much will the testing cost?
- How many test cases have been created?
- Is the quality of the tests sufficient?
- How many bugs were fixed, and how many closed?
- What is the severity of the bugs?
Based on the questions, we define testing metrics:
- the number of fixed defects (Fixed Defects Percentage);
- the difference between the actual time spent and the planned time (Schedule Variance);
- the difference between the actual and planned cost (Budget Variance);
- number of test cases created in total time (Test design efficiency);
- number of tests run per time period (Number of tests run per time period);
- number of bugs found/fixed/closed (Number of defects found/fixed/closed).
Another important factor to consider is the cost of the project, the amount of resources (equipment and employees), and the quality of the products already produced.
In order to share the results obtained during test monitoring with the team or other stakeholders, a report on the project's test progress is written. It typically contains a history of changes, basic project information, metrics, risks, issues, and solutions.
A good test monitoring program is TestMonitor. It allows tracking test results, structuring the received information, generating reports, etc.
Thus, test monitoring and test control are integral parts of test quality assurance. Without them, it is impossible to be certain that the testing process is going well and will be completed on time in the most efficient way.