Test Tool implementation

What is test tool implementation?

How to implement a test tool varies per type of test tool, but there are generic aspects that the implementation of any type of test tool should address. There is more to it than just installing the tool, as is visualized in the test tool implementation model:

Test tool implementation model

For a successful implementation, not only the technical part (the match between test tool and test object) is considered, but also the organizational impact on People, Process and Policies.

After implementation we can use the test tool, but we have to keep adapting to changes to keep achieving the intended effects. The most obvious changes are changes in the test object that require maintenance in the test tool, but changes in organization or processes need adaptation too.

A test tool implementation can be done with a bottom-up approach (focusing on the use of a single type of test tool and having operational goals) or with a top-down approach (dealing with all types of test tools and having strategic goals).

People Involved

All stakeholders are involved in initiating and planning a test tool implementation. The technical implementation is executed by test tool engineers, testers and developers who configure the tools and automate activities. The People, Process and Policy implementation requires involvement of all stakeholders.

Artifacts

To set goals and expectations for a test tool implementation, describe the:

  • Test Tool Strategy
  • Test Tool Implementation Plan
  • Test Tool Selection Criteria

The artifacts after implementation depend on the type of test tool, but can be summarized as all types of testware:

  • Test Cases
  • Tool scripts
  • Test data
  • Test Results
  • Defects

Success Factors

Setting goals in terms of scope, results and timeframes
Dealing with expectations: they can differ substantially from what will actually be achieved
Selecting the right test tool that has a technical fit with the application under test and meets other non-technical criteria like ease-of-use and maintainability
Knowledge & Skills of the test tool users for implementing, maintaining and using them
Test tool usage becoming an integrated part of the application life-cycle: it should be self-evident to use them