Plan Test Cycles

How do you plan your test cycles in your current position?

Questions by marichek1957

Editorial / Best Answer

kurtz182  

  • Member Since Nov-2009 | Dec 4th, 2009


A test cycle includes both a testing effort and a development effort to fix defects and deliver a new build to the test team.  Elements of a test cycle that consume time are:
1) Software development effort to resolve defects and deliver a new build to test
2) Re-test bug fixes
3) Regression tests
4) Functional tests

In order to plan test cycles in a software development project, I would need to answer the following questions:
1) How much time do we have to fully test the software from the time this software is first introduced to test through the time the software is considered of good enough quality to release?
2) How stringent is the company's exit criteria?  The more relaxed the exit criteria, the fewer test cycles will be required to satisfy it.
3) What are the number of test cases?  The larger the number, the more time will be required to execute them during each test run.
4) What is the average duration required to execute test cases?  The greater the number of steps and the greater their complexity, the longer it will take to execute test cases on an average.
5) How many testers will execute test cases?  The fewer the number of testers involved, the longer it will take to complete each test cycle.
6) How many defects do you expect to find during each test cycle.  The greater the number of defects, the more time will be required to verify them during test cycles. 
7) How much time will be required for the development team to resolve defects between test cycles?  Consider these factors: a) complexity of software, b) expertise of development staff, and c) the quality of communication between test and the 
development staff.
8) How firm is the target release date?  Will influential stakeholders allow this date to slip if significant issues arise?
9) What is the liklihood that major revisions of the software will occur during the testing phase of the project?

After receiving answers to these questions, I would plan a software project's test cycles.  

Example: 
1) Testing begins Feb 1, 2010 and ends Mar 31, 2010.  We've got two months to fully test this application. 
2) The software must have no more than 25 open defects and none of them can be Priority1 or Priority2. 
3) There are 1000 test cases
4) The average tester can execute 50 test cases per day.  
5) We have 5 testers.
6) Our company has been creating similar applications for some time and we do not expect an inordinate number of defects.
7) The development team can resolve issues and deliver a new build to testers in 3 days.
8) Marketing has already released a press release announcing the release date of the application, so this deadline is firm.
9) The company has done its up-front planning and we are confident the requirements are accurate, thorough, and will not require revision.

Calculations:
a. We have 43 business days to test this application
b. 50 * 5 = 250 test cases executed per day
c. 1000 / 250 = 4 days to execute all test cases in each test pass
d. Add a day for re-tests, regression tests and unexpected issues that may arise
e. 3 day turnaround for dev staff to fix defects and deliver a new build to test
f. Each test pass (all testing + bug fixes) will require 8 days
g. 43 / 8 = 5.375 test passes

This test project can have as many as 5 test cycles if necessary.  If the product meets the exit criteria in fewer cycles, all the better. 

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sri1915

  • Jul 16th, 2009
 

This is fully dependent on your project and business and user requirement.
First analyse the requirement.
Develop the test plan.
Start writing the test cases.
Test Execution.
Result analysis.
Defect
Management.
Summary.

  Was this answer useful?  Yes

A test cycle includes both a testing effort and a development effort to fix defects and deliver a new build to the test team.  Elements of a test cycle that consume time are:
1) Software development effort to resolve defects and deliver a new build to test
2) Re-test bug fixes
3) Regression tests
4) Functional tests

In order to plan test cycles in a software development project, I would need to answer the following questions:
1) How much time do we have to fully test the software from the time this software is first introduced to test through the time the software is considered of good enough quality to release?
2) How stringent is the company's exit criteria?  The more relaxed the exit criteria, the fewer test cycles will be required to satisfy it.
3) What are the number of test cases?  The larger the number, the more time will be required to execute them during each test run.
4) What is the average duration required to execute test cases?  The greater the number of steps and the greater their complexity, the longer it will take to execute test cases on an average.
5) How many testers will execute test cases?  The fewer the number of testers involved, the longer it will take to complete each test cycle.
6) How many defects do you expect to find during each test cycle.  The greater the number of defects, the more time will be required to verify them during test cycles. 
7) How much time will be required for the development team to resolve defects between test cycles?  Consider these factors: a) complexity of software, b) expertise of development staff, and c) the quality of communication between test and the 
development staff.
8) How firm is the target release date?  Will influential stakeholders allow this date to slip if significant issues arise?
9) What is the liklihood that major revisions of the software will occur during the testing phase of the project?

After receiving answers to these questions, I would plan a software project's test cycles.  

Example: 
1) Testing begins Feb 1, 2010 and ends Mar 31, 2010.  We've got two months to fully test this application. 
2) The software must have no more than 25 open defects and none of them can be Priority1 or Priority2. 
3) There are 1000 test cases
4) The average tester can execute 50 test cases per day.  
5) We have 5 testers.
6) Our company has been creating similar applications for some time and we do not expect an inordinate number of defects.
7) The development team can resolve issues and deliver a new build to testers in 3 days.
8) Marketing has already released a press release announcing the release date of the application, so this deadline is firm.
9) The company has done its up-front planning and we are confident the requirements are accurate, thorough, and will not require revision.

Calculations:
a. We have 43 business days to test this application
b. 50 * 5 = 250 test cases executed per day
c. 1000 / 250 = 4 days to execute all test cases in each test pass
d. Add a day for re-tests, regression tests and unexpected issues that may arise
e. 3 day turnaround for dev staff to fix defects and deliver a new build to test
f. Each test pass (all testing + bug fixes) will require 8 days
g. 43 / 8 = 5.375 test passes

This test project can have as many as 5 test cycles if necessary.  If the product meets the exit criteria in fewer cycles, all the better. 

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