Enhancements to our eSignature Capability

We made a small, albeit important, enhancement to our eSignature capability recently. This enhancement ensures that whenever there is a change to a Test Case, that is covered by eSignature, it’s status automatically changes to a default value. Essentially, ensuring that it must executed and re-verified all over again.

Regular QMetry users are familiar with the option to reset the status of a Test Case when it is modified, the difference here is that the reset is mandated for all artifacts covered by eSignature.

eSignature is being very well-received from well-known companies in the life science, and other compliance-heavy, industries. We strongly urge you to take a close look at it to help achieve compliance with onerous regulations.

Will Agile accelerate Excel’s demise as a Test Management platform?

Excel has inherent limitations as a Test Management platform and these have been documented in multiple articles and forums. It has survived all these years on account of it’s “de facto” presence in most Enterprises as part of an installed Office Suite. The advent of mature Test Management platforms served as a catalyst for it’s appeal getting diminished amongst QA practitioners, as they began to experience the numerous benefits — Version Management, effective Test Automation, Integrations to ALM tools and powerful Reporting – that these platforms provided.

The great appeal, and adoption, of Agile as the SDLC of choice is accentuating this trend. Agile calls for testing software products that get built in short increments and thereby mandates that Testing products offer high levels of Automation, Granular reporting, very detailed Coverage traceability and easy accessibility of timely information to globally-distributed product teams. Precisely, the areas that Excel has severe shortcomings. And thereby, making Excel more and more obsolete as a Test Management platform.

If you are using Excel, we strongly recommend you trial QMetry or attend one of our weekly demos to learn how can introduce new efficiencies into your testing processes.

Quality Assurance or Quality Control

An interesting article from message boards frequented by PMP aspirants piqued our interest enough for us to give more introspection functional areas we appeal to the most.

The article opines that:

  • In Quality Assurance, processes are planned to avoid the defects and assure quality. And that, it is a proactive approach.
  • Quality Control deals with finding the defects and correcting them while making the product. And that, it is more reactive in nature.

Really, QMetry’s Test Management platform holds strong appeal to both of these areas. Proactive QA groups uses techniques like Test Driven Development (TDD) to defined test cases first, and developers write code that meets the need of these test cases. For Quality Control practitioners, QMetry offers a powerful way to execute test cases, either manually or through automation tools, and then save results. Further, our strong integrations with defect tracking tools like JIRA enable developers to quickly identify the root-case of a defect and to rectify them easily.

 

 

Adding Electronic Signatures to a Test Case Lifecycle

We have quite a few customers in compliance-heavy industries like HealthCare and Financial Services. They often have nuanced feature needs that enable them to comply with strict regulations like FDA.

To address the needs of one of these customers, we recently added a feature that can best be described as an electronic signature. Think of it as an audit trail. Essentially it involved the creation of a new field called “Status Changed” for each Test Case artifact. Whenever the status of a Test Case changes, the person making the change has to electronically signoff on the change, and the Status Changed field then reflects the latest value. A typical use case of this would be when an Approver (often different from the Test Case author) logs in and validates that all the information in the Test Case is accurate and up to desired standards.

Our product specialists demonstrate this along with other cool features in our Weekly Webinars. Sign up now and start learning about the benefits of Total Test Management!

Implementing Agile in QMetry Development

Our global development team is constantly at work developing and enhancing our powerful Test Management platform. Frequently, they have to address unique customer needs for customization or the necessity to address bugs through patches/upgrades. Also,custom features go through a few iterations, and each build is often demonstrated to the customer to solicit feedback.

Essentially, their development milieu classically lends itself to adopting Agile processes. And that’s exactly what they have done, by implementing Scrum across the entire development and QA teams . By implementing Jira Agile, they define each feature/improvement as a User Story with estimated Story points. The Plan Tab is used to assign User Stories from the backlog into Sprints. Further, swim lanes have been developed to track the progress of the Sprint:

  • To Do
  • In Progress
  • Resolved
  • Ready to QA
  • Closed

A typical Sprint runs two weeks and always results in a Potentially Shippable Product Increment (PSPI). Implementing Agile has greatly improved the productivity of the team and most importantly enabled it to align closely with the needs of the marketplace.

QA Resolutions for 2014

We’re ushering in a New Year and guessing on resolutions that QA professionals must be making for 2014. Of course, we’ve not conducted any surveys for this but we’ve been at enough Conferences, Seminars, Keynote presentations, and water-cooler conversations throughout 2013 to see some trends. We’ll extrapolate on these and come out with our bet on the Top 5 QA Resolutions for 2014 (from the mind of a QA practitioner).
 

  • Remind myself that I’m not peripheral to the SDLC but central to it.
  • Realize that Testing is NOT a job, it is a passion for improving quality and brand.
  • Strive to be Agile and customer-focused, not reactive and hostage to antiquated processes.
  • Make informed, data-driven decisions on Requirements and Platform Coverage
  • Effectively use Test Management tools to deliver high quality products in shorter time.

We sincerely wish that these resolutions will be adhered to as they have the potential to greatly benefit almost every software product and service in our economy. And that translates to a lot of cool products delivered with fewer bugs and in fast time!

On to a Wonderful 2014…

Is there a thing as Agile Culture

This provocatively titles LinkedIn Group question predictably generated a lot of comments and discussion.

We thought we’d weigh in here too. Our philosophy is in line with classical Agile thinking: Agile is really about culture as much as it is about processes and tools. The culture emphasizes better collaboration between all internal stakeholders and especially between an organization and it’s customers, it is predicated on finding and fixing bugs early to reduce wasted resources and money, it rewards properly functioning software delivered in small increments that is aligned with constantly changing needs, and places a strong premium on delivering business value to a customer above all else.

QMetry addresses these needs by features like Continuous Testing and strong integrations with Automation tools. We also make it very easy to use our Software with market-leading ALM tools like Rally and Jira Agile. Thereby helping you become Agile at all steps of your product lifecycle!

How QMetry and Rally work in tandem at Holmes Corp

It’s always great to get a pat on the back. It’s even better when the compliment is not just for core product features but also for integrations with other ALM products.

Earlier this month, we spoke with Holmes Corp and how they were using QMetry in tandem with a SaaS instance of Rally Software to implement Agile processes at all stages of their SDLC.? Guenther, their Head of Product Development, is really pleased with the ability to gauge ‘Release readiness’ at any point using QMetry. Moreover, his team is pleased at the ease with which User Stories can be imported into QMetry and how Defects in Rally can be updated from QMetry itself.

If you want to learn more about the advantages of integrating Rally with QMetry, visit our Integrations page.

Tis the season of Conferences

Fresh of all the excitement from the Atlassian Summit and StarWest, our team has crossed the Atlantic to showcase QMetry at Eurostar in Gothenberg, Sweden.

Eurostar is particularly exciting because this is the first ever time that we’re exhibiting there -and it’s always good to learn perspectives towards Test Management from different geographies. Of course, we are no strangers to the European market – we have numerous customers there including Pearson, Cognifide and eXo. And we have a technology and distribution partnership with QFS – our product integrates well with their Test Automation platform, QF-Test. You can learn more about this integration through this educational video.

Follow us on Twitter to learn more about our activities at Eurostar!

A look back at the Atlassian Summit

QMetry is a proud sponsor at the Atlassian Summit each year. It gives us a chance to connect with existing customers, new prospects, partners and our friends at Atlassian. Plus, it gives us front-row seats into all the exciting developments in JIRA and GreenHopper — two products we integrate pretty well with.

This year’s Summit definitely surpassed our expectations. The attendance was definitely higher, but more heartening was the strong interest in our bi-directional integration with JIRA and how that could help Developers and QA folks to work effectively in tandem. People visiting our booth clearly stayed longer than usual, asking detailed questions about the nuances of interrelating Defects with Test Cases and best practices around these.

Many Thanks to our friends – Jeff Taylor, Taline Tabakian, Dave Myers and Steven Cross for their help in different areas! We’re already looking forward to next year’s event.

 

 

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