What is Test Strategy?

Test strategy is a plan for defining the testing approach, and it answers to questions like what you want to get done and how you are going to accomplish it. It is most important document for any QA team in software testing, and effectively writing this document is a skill that every tester develops with experience.

Test planning activities guides team to define test coverage and testing scope. It also aids test managers to get clear picture of the project at any instance. The possibility of missing any test activity is very low when there is a proper test strategy in place. Testing strategy plan must be conversed with the entire team so that the team will be consistent on approach and responsibilities.

Test Plan Vs Test Strategy

There is a great confusion about Test Plan and Test Strategy documents. Different organization have their unique processes and standards to manage these documents. For example, some organization include test strategy facts in test plan itself while some organization include strategy as a subsection within the testing plan.

Test Plan

Test Strategy

  • In Test Plan, test focus and project scope are defined. It deals with test coverage, scheduling, features to be tested, features not to be tested, estimation and resource management.

  • Test strategy is a guideline to be followed to achieve the test objective and execution of test types mentioned in the testing plan. It deals with test objective, test environment, test approach, automation tools and strategy, contingency plan, and risk analysis

To make it clearer if Test Plan is some destination then Test strategy is a map to reach that destination.

How to prepare a good test strategy document

Every organization has their unique priority and set of rules for software designing, so do not copy any organization blindly. Always ensure that their document is compatible and adds value to your software development before following the template.

Test Strategy in STLC:

How to create Test Strategy Document

Step#1: Scope

It defines parameters like

  • Who will review the document?
  • Who will approve this document?
  • Testing activities carried out with timelines

Step#2 Test Approach

It defines

  • Process of testing
  • Testing levels
  • Roles and responsibilities of each team member
  • Types of Testing ( Load, Security, Performace testing etc.)
  • Testing approach & automation tool if applicable
  • Adding new defects, re-testing, defect triage, regression testing and test sign off

Step#3 Test Environment

  • Define number of requirement and setup required for each environment
  • Define backup of test data and restore strategy

Step#4 Testing Tools

  • Automation and Test management tools needed for test execution
  • Figure out number of open-source as well as commercial tools required, and determine how many users are supported on it and plan accordingly

Step#5 Release Control

  • Release management plan with appropriate version history that will make sure test execution for all modification in that release

Step#6 Risk Analysis

  • List all risks that you can estimate
  • Give a clear plan to mitigate the risks also a contingency plan

Step#7 Review and Approvals

  • All these activities are reviewed and sign off by the business team, project management, development team, etc.
  • Summary of review changes should be traced at the beginning of the document along with approved date, name, and comment

Conclusion:

Software release goes through Test Strategy documents time to time to map the progress of testing in the right direction. When the release date is close many of these activities will be skipped, it is desirable to discuss with team members whether cutting down any particular activity will help for release without any potential risk.