How to write a test strategy document for your testing
Starting a software testing process without thorough pre-testing planning might end up as a complete failure. There are different steps in every testing process, each unique. Writing a test strategy document to outline key objectives, timelines, and responsibilities at the beginning of the testing process is essential for a successful testing process. This text will go through each process step and explain how to write a test strategy document in detail. Let's begin!
What is a test strategy document, and why do you need it?
A software test strategy document is a critical and comprehensive plan for testing software applications. It outlines the approach, tools, and techniques to ensure the software meets the desired quality and performance standards. The test strategy document typically includes details on testing objectives, timelines, scope, and methodologies to be used during the testing process. It provides a roadmap to ensure that all parties involved in the testing process are aligned toward the common goal of delivering high-quality software.
A software test strategy document is necessary for many reasons, including:
- Clarity: It provides a clear description of the testing objectives, timelines, resources, and methods, ensuring that all stakeholders are aligned toward the common goal.
- Risk Management: It helps to manage risk by identifying areas most vulnerable to defects and allowing for early detection and resolution of issues.
- Efficient testing: It ensures that testing activities are conducted efficiently and cost-effectively using appropriate testing techniques and methods.
- Quality Assurance: It ensures that the software application meets the desired quality standards and is fit for purpose.
- Transparency: It allows for transparency in the testing process, keeping all stakeholders informed and involved.
- Compliance: It ensures the software application complies with the regulatory and compliance requirements.
- Continuous improvement: It provides a framework for continuous improvement by identifying areas for enhancement and incorporating feedback from the testing process.
Test plan vs. Test strategy
While a software test plan and a software test strategy are crucial components of the software testing process, they serve different purposes. A software test plan outlines the specific details of the testing process, including the scope, schedule, test cases, and the individuals responsible for executing each task. It is a tactical document that provides a step-by-step guide for the testers to follow during testing.
In contrast, a software test strategy is a more comprehensive and overarching document that outlines the approach, tools, and methodologies that will be used to achieve the overall testing goals. It focuses on the bigger picture of the testing process and serves as a guide for making testing-related decisions.
What should every test strategy document have?
Every test strategy document should include the following crucial components:
- Scope and objectives: Clearly defined testing goals, objectives, and scope.
- Approach and methodology: Overview of the approach and methodologies used during the testing process, including manual and automated testing, functional and non-functional testing, and other applicable methods.
- Test environment: Description of the test environment, including hardware, software, and other tools or resources necessary to conduct the testing process.
- Risk management: A risk management plan that outlines potential risks and how they will be mitigated and managed throughout the software testing process.
- Test schedule: Detailed schedule that outlines timelines for each testing phase, including all testing activities, milestones, and tasks.
- Test deliverables: List of all test deliverables, including test plans, test cases, test reports, and any other documentation necessary for the testing process.
- Roles and responsibilities: Clear definition of roles and responsibilities for each team member involved in the software testing process.
- Testing metrics and Reporting: Plan for measuring and reporting testing progress and results, including key metrics, such as defect density, test coverage, and pass/fail rates.
- Change management: A change management plan that outlines how changes to the source code or testing procedures will be managed and documented.
- Exit criteria: A set of clearly defined criteria must be met before the testing process can be considered complete.
How to write a test strategy document
Follow these step-by-step instructions to create a clear and comprehensive test strategy document:
1. Test objectives
Some of the questions you should include in this section are:
1. What are the primary objectives of the testing?
2. What performance objectives should the application meet, including the load, stress, and response time?
3. What are the potential security threats, and how can they be managed through testing?
4. What usability requirements should the application meet, including the user interface and user experience?
5. How must the application meet compliance standards, and how must they be tested?
When writing a testing timeline, consider the following:
1. What is the overall project timeline, and how can it be broken down into testing phases?
2. What are the specific testing milestones, including planning, execution, and post-release activities?
3. What is the testing schedule for each testing phase, including start and end dates and key testing activities?
4. What are the dependencies, and how could potential bottlenecks affect the testing timeframe, and how can they be mitigated?
5. What are the specific timelines for producing and delivering test documentation, including test plans, cases, and reports?
6. What are the exit criteria, and how can they be defined and measured to ensure the testing process is complete within the required timeframe?
3. Lifecycle of tasks
For a proper lifecycle of task components, think about these questions:
1. What specific tasks are involved in the testing process, and in what order should they be executed?
2. How will testing tasks be tracked and managed throughout the process, including planning, execution, and post-release activities?
4. Test approach
When it comes to the testing approach, you may have to choose one or a combination of more methodologies. Before settling on a desired one, review the following criteria:
1. What is the overall testing approach, and how will it be integrated into the project plan?
2. What testing methodologies will be used, including manual and automated testing, functional and non-functional testing, and other applicable methods?
3. How will testing techniques be evaluated and selected based on the needs of the specific project?
4. What resources and tools will be used to implement the testing approach, including hardware, software, and other equipment?
5. How are testing results measured, tracked, and reported to ensure the testing approach works effectively?
5. Testing types
Selecting the appropriate testing type depends entirely on your objectives and the specific circumstances. These questions can help you understand your needs:
1. Can you use the different types of testing, including functional, non-functional, performance, security, and usability testing?
2. What types of testing will be used for each component, module, or application?
3. How will each type of testing be executed, what specific methodologies or tools will be used, and what results are expected?
4. What specific testing challenges and risks are associated with each type of testing, and how can they be mitigated?
6. Roles and responsibilities
When assigning roles and responsibilities, it is essential to go through:
1. What specific roles and responsibilities must be fulfilled during the testing process, including testing, project management, and documentation?
2. Who are the individuals who will take on each role, and what are their specific responsibilities?
3. How will communication, collaboration, and coordination be managed among team members during the testing process?
7. Testing tools
Software testing tools have an important role in assessing whether the application aligns with the project's requirements and objectives, so go through these:
1. What are the primary testing tools recommended for diverse testing activities?
2. Are there established criteria to guide the selection of testing tools?
3. How will integrating testing tools into the overall testing process be strategized?
4. Is there a comprehensive plan in place for training and support to ensure effective utilization of the testing tools?
8. Hardware-Software configuration
For hardware-software configuration, answer these questions:
1. What are the recommended hardware and software configurations for different testing environments?
2. Is there a structured plan for managing hardware and software updates and maintenance within the testing environment?
Reporting helps maintain and improve software quality. Make sure you go over the following:
1. Which metrics or KPIs are pertinent for tracking and reporting test progress and outcomes?
2. What is the recommended frequency for generating and disseminating test reports?
3. Who are the key stakeholders requiring access to the testing reports for decision-making and feedback purposes?
Test strategy document example
Here is a simple example of a test strategy document:
1. Test Objectives:
- Ensure that all features of the app function as intended without any critical defects
- Verify that the app meets all performance and security requirements
- Ensure a bug-free user experience across all supported mobile devices and platforms
- Test planning and preparation: 2 weeks
- Test execution: 4 weeks
- Reporting: 1 week
- Planning and preparation
- Test case design and development
- Test environment setup
- Test execution
- Defect reporting and tracking
- A combination of manual and automated testing
- Focus on testing high-priority areas first
- Incorporate user feedback into the testing approach
- Functional testing
- Performance testing
- Security testing
- Usability testing
- Compatibility testing
- Project Manager: Overall project management, coordination, and tracking
- Test Manager: Test planning and execution, test reporting
- Testers: Test execution, test case design and development, defect reporting
- Developers: Defect resolution, implementation of fixes
- Global App Testing for manual testing across multiple languages, cultures, and regions
- JIRA for defect tracking and management
- Crashlytics for crash reporting
- iOS and Android mobile devices
- Multiple versions of iOS and Android operating systems
- Emulators for testing on unsupported devices
- Daily progress reports during test execution
- Weekly test summary reports
- Test completion report summarizing overall testing results and recommendations for future testing
How can GAT assist?
- Thorough testing coverage: We ensure comprehensive testing coverage to guarantee your software meets all specified requirements, leaving no aspect unexamined in our pursuit of quality.
- Diverse testing services: Our suite of testing services includes functional testing, performance testing, security testing, and test automation services, catering to diverse testing needs across various software domains.
- Expert and dedicated team: With a global network of 90,000 testers spanning 190+ countries, Global App Testing boasts a team of professionals dedicated to delivering high-quality testing solutions. Our testers leverage the latest tools and methodologies to ensure reliable and effective testing outcomes.
- Cutting-edge testing methodologies: We employ cutting-edge testing methodologies, including continuous integration, regression testing, and exploratory testing, to ensure efficient and thorough evaluation of software products.
- Tailored testing solutions: Our flexible and adaptable approach allows us to tailor testing services to suit each client's unique requirements. Moreover, we can align our testing processes with specific regulatory standards to ensure compliance and peace of mind.
By partnering with Global App Testing, you gain access to industry-leading expertise and resources to enhance the quality and reliability of your software products. To discover how you can elevate your software testing, sign up and schedule a consultation with our team today!
1. Do I need a test strategy document?
Yes, a test strategy document is crucial for effective testing. It outlines the overall approach, objectives, timelines, and responsibilities associated with testing activities.
2. Can I create a test strategy document by myself?
While it's possible to create a test strategy document independently, involving key stakeholders such as project managers, developers, and QA leads is recommended.
3. Is a test strategy document a one-time document, or does it evolve throughout the project?
The test strategy document evolves throughout the project, adapting to changing requirements, new features, and unforeseen challenges.