How To Approach A Test Plan

How To Approach A Test Plan

No matter how skilled we are at anything, planning truly is the first step to success, and when it comes to QA testing this is still 100% the case. So, the fact is that you will need a test plan document before you begin a test case properly, but what can you do if you don’t know how to write a test plan properly or just aren’t sure what a software test plan is in the first place? Well, if that’s the case all you have to do is read this article, because when you are done with it you’ll understand all there is to know about making a QA test plan, whether it’s a UAT test plan or a multi-layered proposal.

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What is a Test Plan?

To answer what is a test plan we need to answer what the document intends to solve in the first place. A Test Plan as the name implies is a document that contains the instructions or guide as to how to approach a test case. In short, it covers all activities that need to be completed, the schedule, the roles, and so on.

As the name implies it is a complete plan of the eventual testing process, so if you are wondering what is test plan in software testing then it is exactly what it says on the tin.

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Why do testers rely on a test plan?

Organization means everything when it comes to efficiency and that applies whether you are writing a usability test plan or cooking a meal. Being able to efficiently distribute tasks will ensure operations remain smooth and prevent individual team members from overstepping on each other’s tasks.

Additionally, testing already is a task focused on distributing information efficiently to people beyond your team, so being able to have clear goals from the start will ensure that your reports offer the relevant information the developers are expecting.

What makes a good test plan example

A good test plan example has to be comprehensive without being overwhelming. The most important aspect of any set of instructions is that they don’t miss a detail while remaining easily digestible, so you’ll want to be succinct yet efficient in your descriptions:

If that sounds vague or challenging right now don’t worry, We have a test plan example prepared so you can have a better idea of how to tackle them. But the important thing to remember is to list each goal for the test case project, without going too overboard on each description.

Understanding the test plan template

Unlike other aspects that might change from team to team the test plan template is a standardized feature as defined in the IEEE 829. It has 19 details to fill and any testing engineer with some experience in the field will be easily able to fill it with just a few projects of experience.

Today we’ll be taking a look at the standard software test plan template step by step and adding our explanations for the steps that might not be as apparent, but rest assured that a test plan template is much easier to approach than it might seem at first glance.

  • Test plan identifier: The name of the test plan, might be a code depending on the company.
  • References
  • Introduction
  • Test items: The software elements to be tested
  • Software risk issues: Potential failures or irregularities that might occur as a result of testing.
  • Features to be tested
  • Features not to be tested
  • Approach: The methodology used to approach the testing process
  • Pass/Fail criteria: The successful result to be expected from the program
  • Suspension criteria and resumption requirements: Circumstances that would require the testing case to stop altogether.
  • Test deliverables: Evidence of the bugs/successful operation
  • Remaining tests
  • Environmental needs: The circumstances in which the software is tested
  • Staffing and training needs
  • Responsibilities
  • Schedule
  • Planning risks And contingencies: Potential issues that might lead the schedule to get delayed.
  • Approvals
  • Glossary

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What’s the difference between test strategy vs test plan

The difference between test plan and test strategy lies in its goal. Where a test plan aims to describe the needs of the project and how the testing will be scheduled, a test strategy is also a guide, but one that focuses on the technological know-how of how the testing procedures themselves are handled.

In short, the difference between test plan vs test strategy lies in the fact that a test strategy is first and foremost a guide on testing methodology for any case, whereas a test plan is centered around a specific task.

When do I need a test plan vs test strategy?

You’ll need a test strategy vs test plan when it comes to developing your skills as a tester. A test strategy is a personal or team-wide strategy that covers how to engage with the testing software and lets you know how to do your core work. Whereas a test plan is a document that first and foremost is needed for a specific testing instance.

FAQ

Will I need to make a test plan every time?

You might not need to deliver a written copy depending on company policies, but understanding each item concerning the upcoming test case is essential to do a great job.

Are test plan and test strategy opposite concepts?

No, not at all. A test strategy just happens to be a more personal approach, while a test plan is a standard format for test case planning.

What is the IEEE 829?

The 829 Standard for Software and System Test Documentation is a standard for software test documentation. For our current interests clearly defining the standard steps for a test plan is its main achievement.

How do I develop a test strategy?

Experience. You’ll come to understand your test strategy with time and effort, as you plan your skills and discover what tasks are easier for you.

The bottom line

A test plan is a series of steps that allow testers to clearly define what they will do in an upcoming test case and share this information with an entire team. A good test plan keeps everybody on the same page, and as we saw today is not as challenging of a concept as it might first seem. So if you are curious to discover more guides like today’s one, just make sure to stay in contact with us and review our wide assortment of online resources today.

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