4 Steps for Managing Exploratory Testing

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Exploratory testing is quite spontaneous. There is usually no specific testing plan in place for this kind of testing. For this reason, it is possible to detect more errors and fix more bugs. While it is quite effective, exploratory testing is not easy to manage. A lot of real-time decision-making and recording of data is needed. You can be able to achieve results with exploratory testing and still have a functional structure. Here is how you can do that.

Identify Key Areas to be Tested

It is possible to go through the application under test and identify the different areas that the test will cover. After doing that, you can allocate specific teams to work on the identified areas. Doing this makes it easy to focus on specific issues after and during the test period. With such an approach, the unstructured exploratory becomes more logical and more focused. QA testing for agile teams can especially be disorienting when no strategy is in place. Usually, a test that has focus areas, test task lists, and bug records is much easier to work on. The basic structure should thus compose of:

  • The priority areas for testing
  • The tasks for each team
  • The mode of record keeping

Obviously, the scope for each project and test will vary. Establishing a structure is, however, a great place to start if you want to reduce time wastage and confusion.

Make it Obligatory to Have Test Documentation

As the leader of testing and quality assurance, you should make it clear to the team that documentation is vital. Feedback about the test can be provided in various forms including images, video, and text. The extent of the documentation will, however, be determined by the scope of the project. Having data in text format is nevertheless critical since it makes reference and action easy. The channels through which feedback from the team is provided should also be flexible. If possible, the team can have the freedom of making their own remarks on the go. Simple projects might also possibly require oral feedback only.

Analyze Testing Data and Feedback After the Test


This is possibly obvious but very important nevertheless. Once the testing has been completed, you should take the time to go through the feedback of each tester. Doing this usually clears all the doubts and seals any loopholes that might have been left. You should verify that the logs, reports and test results all check out.

The most important aspect of analyzing test data is to get a real picture of the testing process and make recommendations. The specific details about the test as well as the recommendation are compiled in a report which is then transmitted to the engineering team.

Establish a Functional Communication Channel Between the Development Team and the Testing Team

Finally, an open line of communication between engineers and testers is crucial. You should take the initiative of opening up this line of communication. Not only does it make your work more efficient but it also helps in quick identification and resolution of problems. A continuous interaction with testers and engineers also ensures that there is no barrier to communication which is usually a cause for misinformation. The testers will also get a chance to get an insight on the engineers perspective in terms of how information should be transmitted back to the development team.

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