What Is a Test Management Tool in Software Testing?
Test management tools are needed to store different types of test documentation, plan all the Quality Assurance Activities and generate test reports. In other words — you can plan and store all the Test Cases in one place together with the results of test execution, and when you need a structured report with e.g. list of failed test cases in regression testing — you will get it as soon as you need. Some test management tools have such features as test coverage, e.g. requirements, features, user story coverage, etc. Reports can include nice charts if you need the visualization of results (depending on the test management tool, of course).
Why Using a Test Management Tool is Important
Test management tools give you the opportunity to store test cases, plan test activities, manage test executions, and add information about bugs you’ve found.
They also provide:
- Easier test management. You can create a test plan (including test cases that should be executed), choose assignees, specify and build versions and environments where tests will be executed, and create environments where it will be run. At the end of regression you will have a transparent overview of the product quality.
- Simple reporting. All of the test tools allow you to report on your testing activities in just a few clicks. No more routine work and much less version tracking.
- Reduction of repetitive work. All your test cases will be stored in suites, and you will get more traceability on what is covered and what is not. Additionally, if you use requirements-tracking functionality, you will have an end-to-end view of the requirements coverage.
- Permissions management. Most of the tools allow you to assign roles required for the project. You can easily involve new people without worrying that they might delete your latest test plan with dozens of test cases that were already executed.
- Transparency. You will know who executed test cases, and when, where, and what requirements were covered. And if your test management tool has integration with bug tracking systems, you will be able to check what bugs were found and link them to particular test cases.
- Software quality improvement. All of these functionalities will improve your software quality process since you will have full transparency and good requirements coverage.
Test Management and QA Challenges
Test management tools give you a chance to overcome all the challenges you may face during the test management process.
Challenges you will solve with test management tool can include:
- Communication gaps. Thanks to the test management’s full transparency, you will spend less time handling test cases and more on teamwork and QA process improvements.
- You will also have clear reporting that will help you communicate with the customer about the results. Issues with QA Metrics. Test management tools will help you gather all metrics related to test cases execution and test coverage.
- Usage of automation tools. Lots of test management tools have opportunities to integrate with automation tools and frameworks, and once you integrate, you will never have to wonder about the effectiveness of your automation, because you will be able to gather the necessary metrics quickly.
You will also have clear reporting that will help you communicate with the customer about the results.
How You Can Benefit From Test Management?
The benefits of using test management tools are pretty obvious — structured and clear testing process with easy reporting. They may also provide various opportunities for integrations (e.g. with Bug Tracking Tools), usage by multiple teams etc.
What about disadvantages? We would name only one here — you need to choose it correctly.
It’s A Piece Of Cake: Tips On Choosing The Best Test Management Tool That Fits Your Business
To make the right decision, you need to take into consideration the following points:
- Goal. Define the testing process on your project and think about the features that are needed. Do you need it only for test cases storage and easy test cases execution, or do you need customization with your own fields? The better you specify it, the easier it will be to choose.
- Usability. The test management tool should be easy to use and easy to understand. It’s features should be clear and comfortable.
- Price. It’s always about the price and you know it. The test management tool you select should fit in your budget.
- Free trial. Checking out a tool in advance is always a good idea. The free trial option for your preferred tool should give you enough access to figure out how it works and if it meets your needs.
- Integration. Make sure you know what other project software you want to integrate your bug tracking tool with; you might not need any integrations, or you might want very specific things, like integration with an automated testing tool.
- Open source or paid software. Your business needs will determine whether an open-source solution will be the most appropriate.
- Storage. Be sure to note whether the test management tool you’re looking at requires its own server. You should also go into your buying process knowing how many people you’ll need to buy a license for; it can make a big difference in price.
- Additional training and 24/7 support. Some test management tools will require additional training for your team. If it’s a difficult-to-learn system, you’ll want 24/7 support from providers to help you figure things out.
Once you prioritize what’s important for your project, let’s move on to the list of best test management tools and compare them.
Test Management Tools Comparison List
This test case management system helps to manage and track software testing. Its intuitive web-based user interface makes it easy to create test cases, manage test runs and coordinate your entire testing process.
- Supports any team size and any workflow
- Supports huge variety Third-Party Integrations
- Let’s you create a huge variety of reports
- No mobile app
- No requirements planning
- No bug tracking section
- HP Quality Center/ALM
HP ALM (Application Lifecycle Management) is a web based test management tool that helps organizations to manage the application lifecycle right from project planning and requirements gathering, to testing and deployment, which otherwise is a time-consuming task.
- Has mobile version
- Supports huge variety Third-Party Integrations
- Weak usability
- No filtering options for test cases
- No ability to trace changes in the test case
- No ability to add attachments
Xray a Jira plug-in that facilitates enterprise test management. This test management system supports Third-Party Integrations (with automated and CI tools) and has advanced reporting capabilities.
- Integration with CI tools including Bamboo and Jenkins
- Good field customization
- No requirements management
- It is integrated only with Jira
- Test Link
Test Link is an open source web-based test management tool developed and maintained by Teamtest. This platform provides support for reports, statistics, user management, test projects, test plans, test suites, and test cases.
- Open source tool
- Integration with bug/task tracking tools
- Ability to work with requirements (add/ track)
- Comprehensive test planning and test case management
- Reporting feature with an interactive dashboard
- Limited support
- No mobile application
- Doesn’t have a user-friendly design
Author: Karolina Panada