The Position of the Test Manager

Test managers really serve very different clients, their testers and corporate management. For the testers, the test manager helps develop product test strategies, and provides test expertise to the testing group. For management, the test manager gathers product information in order that corporate administration can resolve when the product is ready to ship. For each the testers and administration, the test manager helps define and confirm product ship criteria.

As the test manager, you might have an opportunity to barter the criteria with advertising and marketing and the development groups. You want to confirm criteria with prospects or representatives of the customer. The development group’s job is to figure out easy methods to achieve what the corporate desires to achieve. Utilizing the customer requirements to determine what to do provides the developers an entire view of the product and how it works. Once the product is defined when it comes to what and how, the testing effort can verify how well the product meets the real requirements.

It’s essential for testers to prioritize their testing in order that the product ship criteria will be met. Since only a few projects have sufficient time to do everything, getting the testers sufficient info for what and when to test is a very important position for the test manager.

Corporate managers need to know the product ship standards sufficient to be able to judge whether or not the product is ready to ship at a given date. I don’t believe the test group must be either the holder of product approval or rejection-that role belongs to corporate management. Having pre-negotiated, agreed-upon ship standards helps corporate managers choose for themselves whether or not a product is ready to ship. Pre-negotiated standards helps the project staff determine what product high quality is when one nobody is confused from the project work.

These ship criteria should have a significant impact on the test strategy for the product. For instance, if the product is an operating system that has to run on a number of hardware platforms, ship criteria that emphasize the number of platforms the product has to run on, and de-emphasize the precise options of the working system will push your strategy to one in all hardware mixture testing, not depth-first testing across many features on one specific platform. The test manager does not essentially develop your entire strategy for testing, however should have enter to the strategy, and participate in reviewing the strategy with the test group.

The profitable test manager also gathers product data, in the form of defect counts, test pass rates, and different significant data. The test manager defines the data, after which gathers it for presentation to corporate management. For example, I collect what I consider to be the “fundamental” metrics:

Defect find and shut rates by week, normalized against stage of effort (are we finding defects, and can builders sustain with the number found and those essential to fix?)

Number of tests deliberate, run, passed by week (do we all know what we’ve to test, and are we able to do so?)

Defects found per exercise vs. total defects found (which activities find essentially the most defects?)

Schedule estimates vs. actuals (will we make the dates, and how well can we estimate?)

Individuals on the project, planned vs. precise by week or month (do we’ve got the people we need when we want them?)

Major and minor necessities changes (do we all know what now we have to do, and does it change?)

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