The industry is moving towards agile testing methodologies. With agile, software development is incremental; the development team works on the software in smaller increments and assesses the software development life cycle continuously in order to cater to any changes.
Continuous integration is the preeminent key to deliver a quality product. So, the development team or testing team can start software testing procedures as early as possible in order to deliver the software quicker and fulfill end-user’s expectations, which is a dream of every product owner.
What Is An Agile Testing Method?
Instead of the traditional waterfall model of a linear approach, agile testing methods shorten the process, add flexibility, and focus on iteration to create better products. For agile methods, customer feedback is really crucial and helps inform decisions for improvement.
Key Features Of Agile Methods
Ongoing Testing: in agile, continuous testing is a must and the testing team provides constant feedback from customer to developer to help deliver error-free products.
Continuous Improvement: because of its iterative working style, agile methodology involves continuous improvement of not only the product but also the team to get the best from the minds of their people. Regression testing also plays an important role in this scenario, so that new features do not disturb previous functionality.
Feedback Response: the agile team performs constant customer collaboration, which shortens the time of feedback response and makes it easier to implement new features in the software.
Agile Methodology Types
There are two commonly adopted types of agile methodologies, namely scrum and kanban.
Scrum: this is a type of agile methodology that is characterized by fixed-length sprints, generally shorter sprints. Usually a proper team with definite assigned roles carries out scrum activities. The team comprises project manager, product owner, scrum master, and other members with defined duties. Scrum Master controls the implementation of this approach.
Kanban: this management method is used to help in DevOps software development and maximize the work efficiency. A kanban board is used to keep track of the stages in this process and notes are used to represent tasks at every stage. It provides visualization of the tasks’ progress and helps to complete the projects with properly defined goals.
Originally designed by a software consultant Brian Marick, agile quadrants help us perceive QA tests better because it provides guidance in determining the QA process for your agile project. Although the adaptation by Lisa Crispin (see image below) are not set rules, testing managers make their choices from the specified types of testing in these quadrants as per their project requirements.
Q1: With the development process, the testing team performs unit testing and component testing repeatedly in order to ensure the quality of the product. Testers use automation testing in this process to make continuous feedback more effective.
Q2: The quadrant illustrates functional testing where test execution techniques can use automation or manual testing. Through prototypes and simulations provided by the team, the end-user checks the product’s core functionality. These tests usually focus on the end-user‘s requirements.
Q3: It contains user acceptance testing, exploratory testing and software usability testing. It’s usually manual testing performed by the testing team and end-user. The testers review product backlog and provide their feedback to further improve the quality of the product.
Q4: In this quadrant, automated test execution of performance tests helps to check the performance and security of the software. Testers can use suitable testing tools to perform test automation.
Benefits Of Using Agile Methods
If you haven’t already moved towards agile methods, this is why it could be beneficial for you to make the shift. With agile methods, you can:
Have the flexibility to change and adjust new features
Collect regular feedback from the end-user
Find errors quickly
Save time and costs from creating a product that might not be what the user is looking for
Create a higher quality product
Higher customer satisfaction as the user’s feedback is constantly involved throughout the agile process
How To Implement Agile Methodologies
While there are many variations of agile testing, here’s a simple step-by-step version to get you started:
1. Plan Ahead
Gather all the stakeholders to plan the aim, scope, schedules, risks, and test plan of the iteration.
2. The Testing Process
This process involves iterations of software development and software testing life cycle in order to accomplish the quality assurance needs of the product.
3. Keeping Track Of Progress
The stakeholders gather in weekly meetings to assess the progress against the decided milestones.
4. Acceptance Review
In this meeting, the team members decide whether the working software is as per given user’s acceptance criteria and the implementation is ready to go live or not.
5. Feedback And Lessons Learned
It’s always positive to learn from your mistakes, so the entire team gives more excelling inputs and competent help to make improvements in the next sprint of the project.
Agile testing is ideal for early and robust deliverance of the product which complies with end-user requirements. Since this is an expeditious technique and yields a happier team and convinces end-customers, it makes sense to incorporate it into your testing process.