Software Testing

Software Testing Plan: 8 Steps for Execution

A software testing plan serves as a detailed guide to ensure the final software's quality through exhaustive and effective testing before its release. In a constantly evolving market with increasing competition, software quality and creating a positive user experience (UX) are critical. Thus, the testing plan emerges as an essential step to make software stand out.

This approach aims to build greater confidence among users and the developing company alike: the software testing plan ensures that all necessary steps are taken to produce a high-quality final product. Therefore, we will review the concept of a software testing plan and how to implement it effectively.

What is a Software Testing Plan?

A software testing plan is a document that outlines the steps to be taken and the approach to testing in a software development project. Its goal is to ensure the software's quality and performance before launch, acting as a roadmap through complex QA and QC processes.

The software testing plan involves:

  • Setting specific goals and objectives.
  • Providing a structure for testing activities: what will be done, how, and who will be responsible.
  • Determining the acceptance criteria for each test, facilitating objective evaluation to determine if the software is ready for launch.

How to Execute a Software Testing Plan? Step by Step

1. Understanding the Objectives of the Software Testing Plan

This refers to the project's user requirements, from the traceability matrix to functional requirements, use cases, or functional specifications and design. The process will vary depending on whether it is a new system or an existing one that is to be optimized.

2. Determining Which New Features to Test

Based on the information from the previous step and other data gathered from interviews with the requirements engineering team, the second step in a testing plan is to determine the functionalities or characteristics of the software to be incorporated.

This step is crucial for software developments integrated into existing systems. It involves determining the components affected across all layers of the software architecture. Business analysts and software architects play a key role here.

3. Defining the Testing Strategy

It's time to select the types of software tests to be conducted. This includes tests based on each modified functionality (functional and acceptance tests), non-functional tests, white box tests, and regression tests.

4. Defining the Criteria

In a software testing plan, the criteria for starting, accepting, and suspending tests must be defined. This means determining the quality failure tolerance level, conditions to start or resume tests, and conditions for test suspension.

5. Establishing the Required Environments

At this stage of the software testing plan, the characteristics that hardware and software environments must exhibit to conduct the tests are defined. It's the development team and software architects' responsibility to create an environment as similar as possible to the production environment, aiming for the highest reliability.

This is where, for example, the choice of Test Data Management platform used during the testing process is made. This step is crucial, as selecting suitable tools like icaria TDM improves software quality through better test coverage and early fault detection.

6. Estimating Personnel Requirements

This involves estimating the personnel (and training) resources necessary to conduct the tests. Personnel selection should be based on the type of processes to be performed and the systems used.

7. Choosing the Methodology

The software testing plan also determines which software testing methodology will be implemented (agile testing projects, predictive projects...). Based on this choice, the procedures for design and execution will also be detailed.

8. Planning

The moment arrives to determine the test planning, considering:

  • Responsibility and task matrix
  • Schedule
  • Conditions for schedule compliance
  • Potential risks and response plans based on the established requirements. This includes everything from external factors that may impact the project to issues with environment availability or personnel, as well as the non-fulfillment of the premises detailed in the previous point.

At icaria Technology, we work to help companies develop safe, efficient, and data protection law-compliant testing environments. In this vein, we have developed icaria TDM, a tool designed to facilitate and expedite software testing by providing quality data to testers when needed. If your software testing plan aims to reduce waiting times and save costs without compromising the quality of testing processes, contact us or request a demo of icaria TDM and experience firsthand the benefits of this tool.