How Do You Manage Test Execution Timelines?

Assessing the contemporary software size, software testing can be witnessed as a separate entity from the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). In the software industry, as a particular phase reaches a significant scale, irrespective of the domain it belongs to, it will inevitably be segmented into multiple stages to enhance its efficiency and execution. Testing follows a similar pattern, wherein well-known phases like test planning and test summary reporting have gradually shifted their emphasis from practical implementation utilizing test scripts to a greater focus on theoretical aspects.

During this intermediate stage, the project’s requirements are investigated through the execution of commands and actions utilizing automation testing tools and frameworks. This empirical exploration and verification stage is known as test execution. Test execution timelines are a paramount facet of any software testing process. As technology persists to advance at a rapid pace, the pressure to provide high-quality, error-free software has never been greater. To effectively address these demands, organizations must embrace a carefully planned and streamlined approach when it comes to test execution timelines.

This blog will explore the various factors that contribute to the effective management of test execution timelines. But before that, let us have a brief understanding of test execution.

What is Test Execution?

Test execution entails the thorough execution of test cases for software applications to ascertain their compliance with predefined necessities and specifications. It compares the intended outcomes with the actual outcomes. The test execution is an integral part of the STLC (Software Testing Life Cycle) and SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle). Test execution commences with the culmination of the test planning phase.

After the completion of the test script, it is disseminated to the development and business analyst team for detailed examination and feedback. Then, the Quality Assurance incorporates the required modifications. This thing marks the successful completion of the test design procedure. Once the test cases have been designed, it is vital to guarantee that the application is suitably configured to commence the test execution process.

Apart from the test cases, the test environment and software build are also vital aspects of the test execution process. Here are a few tips to guarantee the effective execution of test cases:

  • Utilize test management tools.
  • Ensure that the test design is complete.
  • An efficient workflow for monitoring and analyzing test results and metrics.
  • Team members must understand the criteria for documenting tests and reporting bugs.
  • Every team member should know about the data to be tracked.

Significance of Test Execution

Test execution authorizes software teams to attain the next level of development and guarantees that the projects run smoothly and efficiently. It is also accountable for guaranteeing the competency of the application in the international market. Upon successful completion of the test execution phase, where the achieved outcome aligns with the intended result, the software is considered prepared for its market launch.

Test execution evaluates the endeavors of team members involved in the development process and provides answers to some of the below-given queries:

  • Whether the requirements are collected and interpreted accurately or not?
  • Whether the requirements are incorporated accurately in designs and architecture or not?
  • Whether the development team’s software application is created in accordance with the requirements or not?

How do you Manage Test Execution Timelines?

The process of test execution entails the meticulous examination and validation of the functionality of each feature within the software application. This examination entangles placing the application in various scenarios to analyze and verify its response in those specific circumstances. It plays a vital role in the testing procedure to help teams create rugged software applications that fulfill the end-user needs. 

As testing software is a tedious and intricate procedure, test execution helps the development team guarantee compliance, reliability, and efficiency with industry norms. Test execution is the last step in the testing process. It is usually conducted after the test cases have been developed and reviewed. Nonetheless, with the ever-increasing complexity of software systems and the pressure to release products quickly, managing test execution timelines has become a challenging task for organizations. 

Here are a few factors that contribute to effective test execution timeline management: 

Define Test Scope and Preferences

Before starting test execution, it is necessary to define the scope and preferences of the testing activities. This helps to focus on the most crucial features and functionalities of the software application. Furthermore, it helps to save time by avoiding out-of-scope or low-value tests. 

Developers can use myriad criteria to prioritize the test cases, such as customer impact, business value, complexity, defect history, or dependency. Besides, test cases can also be grouped into different categories, such as regression tests, functional tests, sanity, and smoke, and they have distinct weights and frequencies to them.

Prioritize Test Cases Strategically

Teams must prioritize test cases strategically to effectively manage test execution timelines. This entails the identification and prioritization of the most crucial and high-risk test cases while also taking into account the possible impact on the overall software quality. By strategically choosing and conducting test cases, teams can attain maximum coverage and efficiency, guiding to a smoother and more timely testing process. Besides, prioritizing test cases can assist teams in pinpointing and addressing critical issues early on, diminishing the risk of delays and guaranteeing a successful delivery of the software.

Evaluate Test Effort and Duration

After defining your test scope and preferences, you need to evaluate the effort and duration of the test execution. This step plays a very important role as it helps to allocate resources, set realistic deadlines, and schedule tasks. You can utilize various techniques to evaluate the test effort and duration, such as historical data, analogy, function points, or expert judgment. Furthermore, you should also consider aspects such as test data preparation, test environment availability, test automation level, defect resolution time, and test case complexity.

Monitor Test Progress and Status

Managing test execution timelines entangles vigilant monitoring of test advancement and status. This helps to pinpoint and resolve problems, measure performance, and report outcomes. Start by establishing explicit milestones and metrics to track improvements. Consistently maintain and update a centralized test dashboard for the purpose of visualizing and presenting test results. Pinpoint bottlenecks and address them quickly. 

Furthermore, developers can use myriad tools Such as Selenium, Appium, Playwright, Cypress and others and metrics to monitor the test progress and status, like test management software, reports, dashboards, or charts. It is necessary to maintain direct communication with the testing team to handle issues proactively. The developers need to prioritize critical tests first and allocate resources accordingly. Schedule regular status meetings to promote alignment among team members.

In the context of managing test execution times, where efficiency and speed are crucial, cloud testing platforms like LambdaTest offer a powerful solution to streamline your testing process.

LambdaTest is an AI-powered test orchestration and execution platform to run manual and automated tests at scale. The platform allows you to perform both real-time and automation testing across 3000+ environments and real mobile devices.

Conclusion

Having a thorough understanding of test execution timelines will authorize developers and testers to take the necessary steps to enhance the quality and effectiveness of the software application. Managing test execution timelines is a vital aspect of guaranteeing efficient and effective testing processes. By conducting a thorough analysis and evaluation of the project’s scope, establishing attainable timelines, and maintaining consistent communication with the team, it is feasible to effectively manage and meet the designated test execution timelines.


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