Here’s a scenario: it’s a few hours before the end of your working day and you’re already dreaming about being at home, curled on the sofa, binge-watching your favorite show on Netflix. Then your manager asks you to prepare a testing status report. It will require you to consolidate data in multiple Excel worksheets that was probably inputted by different teams and may be in different languages. Different worksheets have different formatting, embedded links, and separate owners. Some information is bound to be missing.
As the clock ticks away, outside, it begins to get dark, and you’re still at your desk, cutting and pasting, hunched over your computer. It doesn’t take long for you to get stuck. Simple typos, changed formulas, or changes in layout are making updating this spreadsheet a nightmare. Suddenly, you realize the full extent of your misfortune – your revised document cannot be reused! Status updates and testing cycles follow the same painful pattern. Urgh!
Then it hits you – you really ought to start thinking of a better way to manage your business application testing.
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ERP & Enterprise application Test Management: The Essentials
To gain key user adoption, enterprise application testing solutions need to support test planning, execution, monitoring and evaluation of UAT.
Key functionalities should include:
1. Business process-centricity.
Any change to a business-critical application function may impact downstream systems, transactions, and business processes. The release of a new or changed single feature or functionality is likely to impact an entire business process. Therefore, a test management solution should accommodate monitoring and defect reporting based on business processes not test cycles.
2. Intuitive onboarding
Replacing a known, albeit failing tool with an unfamiliar solution is bound to be met with resistance. Fear of technology is, to some extent, innate in human nature and as they say, better the devil you know. To gain immediate key user adoption and reduce objections, a business Test Management solution must enable easy and seamless onboarding.
3. Ease of use
Business users are key users. Testing is rarely their core responsibility or key performance indicator (KPI) against which they are measured. To win them over, the Test Management solution must be easy to use and automated by default.
4. Input channels for multiple and often globally dispersed stakeholders
Reliance on spreadsheets is not scalable because sharing and updating them is asynchronous, even with online sharing platforms like Google Docs. In addition, different people often enter non-quantitative data in various formats. Conforming qualitative data into a single format and extracting reportable metrics from it (using excel pivot tables, for example) can take hours to sort out.
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What’s Wrong with Spreadsheets?
Spreadsheets are notoriously difficult to share or update. They lack uniform processes for all stakeholders involved. Different time zones, languages and formulas are only some of the issues that can cause delays. Most importantly, Excel is not a test management solution. Therefore, its inefficiencies in this context run much deeper.
Relying on tools that are unmanageable and unscalable is risky and time consuming for both business users and functional experts.
Spreadsheets are notoriously difficult to share or update. They lack uniform processes for all stakeholders involved. Different time zones, languages and formulas are only some of the issues that can cause delays. Most importantly, spreadsheets are not a test management solution. Therefore, their inefficiencies in this context run much deeper.
Relying on unmanageable and unscalable tools is risky and time-consuming for both business users and functional experts.
Business users need a solution that:
- Embraces collaboration
- Provides real-time visibility into status and results
- Simplifies tedious documentation processes
- Increases the efficiency, quality, and certainty of testing
- Creates and maintains a standardized approach from the get-go
Don’t Get Left Behind
Spreadsheets (like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets) have traditionally been used to meet test management needs. They are not designated testing tools.
Letting go of your spreadsheets and transitioning to a Smart Test Management platform is simple. Choose a SaaS solution that:
- Requires no hardware or software installations
- Is business-user friendly
- Provides you with full visibility, collaboration, and automated documentation
Download our latest eBook to learn more about the 5 reasons spreadsheets are holding back your enterprise application testing.