I’m busy working through Google’s Software Testing book, How Google Tests Software, and got inspired when I read about the 10 minute test plan in the book. I had read this blog post a few years ago but only recently has it made an impression on me. I’m all for the main gist of the blog post to not create waste and to focus your planning efforts. If you do a google search for test plan templates and peruse some of them, some of these promote waste creation that frankly will never read by most of your team members.
Before I get to the main point of my blog post, lets unpack what a test plan is:
A test plan is a document detailing a systematic approach to testing a system such as a machine or software
sum or intersection of strategy and logistics
A test plan should serve as a living document of your planning efforts on how you are going to test. This document should be the blueprint that dictates how testing will be performed for the application/project.
A test plan shouldn’t be about filling out a template because if that’s what your definition of a test plan then you are being inefficient with your use of time. A test plan should be specific, contextual and discuss the following:
Why are we testing on this project? Do we understand why the customer wants this enhancement or new application?
What problem are we trying to solve? What areas of the application are being affected?
How are we going to test the application e.g. heuristics, oracles, scenarios?
When are we planning to test e.g. testing estimates?
Where will these changes be tested e.g. environment?
At the end of the day, you should not need to document more information than the aforementioned points because then you are just taking precious time away from the most important responsibility of a tester i.e. to test!
If you would like to do some more reading on how to create more context specific test plans, I’d highly recommend reading through the following resources:
- Ministry of Testing – Test Planning Mindmap
- What Should a Test Plan Contain?
- Writing Good Test Plans and Writing Good Tests
Good luck with your future planning efforts!