Testing, it is not a new concept to you, but it is a critical part to any technical project – making sure that any enhancements, developments, and design are working properly and to the client’s expectations. Test planning, control, analysis, design, implementation, execution, evaluation and reporting – these are all part of the testing process and if you have taken the CTFL (Certified Testing Foundation Level) training and exam you know this inside and out. However, how many of you have tested on an agile project? And out of those of you who have tested on an agile project, how many of you use VersionOne (an agile management tool)? And if you use VersionOne, how many of you utilize the Testboard function in VersionOne?

I’m currently a tester on an agile data ETL (extract, transform, and load) project for a client where they utilize VersionOne. In an internal project, I am also using VersionOne for a mobile testing project. While I use VersionOne at varying capacities and ways in both of my projects, I do, however, utilize the Testboard function. As with anything, there are pros and cons to any software tool. By no means am I an expert in testing or in using VersionOne, but I will describe some of the benefits and shortcomings that I encountered while using VersionOne’s Testboard.

Benefits of using VersionOne’s Testboard:

  • You are able to create test cases in VersionOne linking each test case back to the appropriate backlog item. This helps with test management since you are able to easily view and track each test case back to a story.
  • When creating a test case, you are able to type in specifics such as setup instructions, data inputs, test steps, expected results, actual results, and you can attach any links or attachments to the test cases.
  • Each time you create and/or update, VersionOne tracks the date and time so you know exactly when and who worked on the test case. By clicking on the “History” tab, all of the changes made to the test case by time and person.
  • Visually, the Testboard is great at seeing which test case passed, failed, or has not yet been tested. As you test each test case, you can simply move the test cases into the Failed or Passed columns.
  • Probably the best and most valuable benefit of using the Testboard is that everyone is on the same page when it comes to documentation and tracking of tests cases. Everyone on your team can view and see the progress of the testing. To be even more efficient about communicating progress, you can even use the Conversations function to communicate progress with your team and tag the appropriate test case to the conversation for reference.

Where VersionOne’s Testboard falls short and ways to go about it:

  • I wish the test case number (ID number) is listed on the card just like how the backlog item number is displayed on the top left side of the backlog card. While this may not matter if you only have one or two test cases per backlog item, when you have 10 plus test cases for a single backlog item, this causes a major headache. Yes, I can hover over the test case to find the ID number, but this takes up too much time trying to hover and find the test case I am looking for. You can name your test cases more specifically (this can be hard to do if you are trying to keep your test case names short and sweet).
  • There is no way you can duplicate a test case. When I have several similar test cases, it would be nice if I could just write one and duplicate it and make necessary changes rather than to write the entire test case again. Simple copy from one test case and paste to a new test case does work. However, when you are copying and pasting, there are bound to be some mistakes such as forgetting to copy and paste something, or the text alignment is off, or pasting information in the wrong section.
  • VersionOne does not have the best aesthetics and layout. There are separate sections for inputs, test steps, expected results, and actual results. If you are like me, you would probably want these four sections to be side by side so you can quickly glance across the page and see all the information you need. However, the current layout requires that you scroll up and down. This makes it difficult to keep track of where you are. So, instead of using all the sections as intended. I have been creating a table and naming my columns (Test Steps, Data (as in data input), Expected Results, Actual Results, and Comment).

So next time you are on a project as a tester using VersionOne or you are contemplating whether or not to use VersionOne to document and track testing, I hope this article helps you in determining whether or not VersionOne meets all your testing needs or how best to approach testing via VersionOne. Of course there are more benefits and shortcomings than those that I just described, but just remember: there isn’t a perfect tool, just a perfect way to use the tool. Good luck!