Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Top smells that indicate that your project needs TDM

In my previous posts, I explained about the basics of Test Data Creation, Challenges in Production Cloning, Data Subset and Data Masking.  In this post we will focus on a slightly different note.

Invariably every problem has a symptom that we call smells in the modern Agile days.  So this post is going to focus on the typical smells that indicate that your project needs Test Data Management (TDM).

  • Testers waste more time preparing test data rather than testing the application
    • This is probably the number one symptom or smell that warrants a TDM process and solution in place.
  • Testers depend a lot of Business Analysts to provide the required test data
    • This is also one of the top symptom when it comes to the need for TDM.  There is a lot of dependency for test data from the Business Analysts.
  • Testing deadlines slipped more than once due to delay in test data refresh
  • Lot of false defects due to data related issues
    • Lot of defects get raised, then they get rejected mentioning invalid data as the reason.  A clear alarm that the data related false defects are growing and needs to be eliminated.
  • Testers often complain that creation of test data is a very complicated process & very time consuming
    • This is also another top symptom that the process of creation of test data needs attention
  • Test database is as voluminous as the Production database and it hinders performance
    • This is a sure shot indication that the project needs test data attention
  • There is no reuse of test data
    • For each and every release, same process needs to be followed and lot of repeatable steps needs to be followed to create test data, indicating lack of test data.  This is also another critical indication.
  • There is a lot of dependency on the upstream systems for the test data to be created.
    • This is a critical indication.  A lot of delay can happen waiting for another system to provide the test data.
  • As the project size increases, people complain that is it getting difficult to manage the test data.
    • There can be too many point of contacts for getting the test data, too many data sources, test data all over the place, etc.  All of these combined form a clear indication that the project needs TDM.

Hope the information in this post was useful.  Thanks for reading.

About the Author

Rajaraman Raghuraman has nearly 8 years of experience in the Information Technology industry focusing on Product Development, R&D, Test Data Management and Automation Testing.  He has architected a TDM product from scratch and currently leads the TDM Product Development team in Cognizant.  He is passionate about Agile Methodologies and is a huge fan of Agile Development and Agile Testing.  He blogs at Test Data Management Blog & Agile Blog.  Connect with him on Google+

1 comment:

  1. do u have any test data management methodology document/template.

    niharika 3 4 0 at g m a i l d o t c o m