17 September 2015

Exploratory Testing: Agile testing On Steroids

Exploratory testing is the testing world’s answer to agile development.

There used to be a time when the dominant software development model was a “waterfall” model. That is, before writing code, developers spent a long time analysing requirements and writing design documents.

As the software industry matured, we quickly realised that it is much better to develop software in small increments in rapid iterative cycles of design – build – evaluate - adapt - learn. This process (called agile) leads to much better outcomes since it combines learning and doing beautifully.

Similarly, the traditional approach to testing was to translate requirements into a series of test cases.
Testers wrote these cases down in documents in order to prepare for a test phase. When the test phase started, these documents were pulled out and tests were executed as per the document prepared earlier.

The problem with this approach is that it curtails the creativity of the tester in finding important issues in the software.

Exploratory testing is an approach to software testing that is concisely described as simultaneous learning, test design and test execution. By not writing the test cases upfront, exploratory testing allows the tester to learn and creatively test as she goes through testing the software. Powerful test cases can be documented after a round of exploration for future use e.g. for automated regression tests.

To be sure that Exploratory tests do not become an excuse not to prepare or plan, at Qsome, we have evolved a methodology of ‘pair expedition’ and time-boxing which enables us to unleash this power in our testing projects.

At Qsome, we have seen on average, 10x improvement in tester productivity through exploratory tests across multiple projects. In today’s world where time to adopt new technology solutions is becoming crucial, this 10x improvement is the lifeline for our customers.

If you want more information about our software testing services and leading-edge testing tools, or help in achieving any of the above, get in touch:

Or contact us on +61 8 8312 1287 or solutions[at]qsometech.com

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