The features of test management tools are given below. Some tools will provide all of these features; others may provide one or more of the features.
Features or characteristics of test management tools are:
- To manage the tests (like, keeping track of the same kind of data for a given set of tests, knowing which tests need to run in a common environment, number of tests planned, written, run, passed or failed);
- Scheduling of tests to be executed (manually or by a test execution tool);
- Managing the testing activities (time spent in test design, test execution, whether we are on schedule or on budget);
- Interfaces to other tools, such as:
- test execution tools (test running tools);
- incident management tools;
- requirement management tools;
- configuration management tools;
- Traceability of tests, test results and defects to requirements or other sources;
- To log the test results (note that the test management tool does not run tests but could summarize results from test execution tools that the test management tool interfaces with);
- To prepare progress reports based on metrics (quantitative analysis), such as:
- tests run and tests passed;
- incidents raised, defects fixed and outstanding.
This information can be used to monitor the testing process and decide what actions to take (test control), as described in Chapter 5. The tool also gives information about the component or system being tested (the test object). Test management tools help to collect, organize and communicate information about the testing on a project.