Assignment of Test Cases in Test Management Tools

May 17, 2012

All test management tools have the concept of assigning testcases. Some provide more capabilities than others. Certain tools provide just about every capability you can imagine but do this with a level of complexity which can be quite difficult to manage. Others have limitations that may or may not impact your ability to implement the process you need. In this article we look in detail at how your test management tool implements assignment at the set, case and step level.

Key points you should consider in regards to how a test management tool implements the concepts of assignment are:

  1. At which level do I want to carry out assignment (e.g. step, case and set).
  2. Do I need to be able to define different assignments of individual test steps within a case.
  3. Do I need to be able to define assignment of individual testcases within a test set.
  4. At run time how does assignment of the same test set to different configurations work.
  5. Can assignment of these different components be changed at run time.

In the following example we look at how QAComplete and ALMComplete implement the concept of assigning testcases and sets. Cases are contained within a Library where we carry out the development and store our testcases ready for use in a set. Each set will contain multiple testcases and can then be executed against a release and a configuration. It should be noted that assignment can not be set at the step level or for test cases within a set. All the steps within a testcase are assigned at the testcase level. And all the tests within a set are assigned at the set level. With the test management tool QAComplete, default fields include both owner and assigned to fields for tracking assignment.

Both cases and sets have an owner (the person who created the record) and the person it is assigned to (the person developing or executing). Within the library individual tests may be assigned to someone. The owner may be the person responsible for maintaining the set and the assigned to the person responsible for executing the set. If you want to have different people run the same set against different configurations or releases then you have to change the assignment prior to each run of the set.

The concepts around assiging testcases to a tester sound simple. In practice though there are many ways to approach this and there are many ways the different tools provide this capability. The key is understanding these different approaches. Then making sure you select and set up your test management tool to cover the right process flow for you and your team.