So, how to plan exploratory testing? In a previous article about Exploratory testing, I told you about the differences between exploratory testing and scripted testing and which one is the best. The conclusion was neither. Go back to the article if you haven’t read it already to understand why. Now that you are back, I can tell you how to still choose exploratory testing, even though you make it a little more concentrated and planned.
How should you plan exploratory testing?
Use Test Charters
If you haven’t used one already something is wrong. Charters are part of a tester’s life. When talking about exploratory testing, test charters help you prioritize the goals you set when you start a test session. Don’t worry, you can still edit them, remove or add some new.
These don’t come as a restriction and make sure you write them as simple as possible but make sure there aren’t to the point of not giving you any direction. You want to simplify your work but not “stupidify” it.
Use test charter for guidance, not limitation. Look at charters as they give you the confidence to expect without forcing. Charters help you form a certain structure that will help you as a tester uncover the enemy and eliminate it. You will also give your client an insurance that you know what you are doing.
Usage of session-based testing
2. Session-based Testing
If you are used to following the script and brake no rules, session-based testing will configure the process and will give assurance of what kind of work you will perform and how you will report it. The goal of such a session-based testing session is to respect the parameters of the test charter but also give freedom of expanding while you advance in your testing process. This way you will have a structured delivery of the results.
After the session, you need to debrief it using a method called PROOF.
Past. What happened during the session?
Results. What was achieved during the session?
Obstacles. What got in the way of good testing?
Outlook. What still needs to be done?
Feelings. How does the tester feel about all this?
Last but not least, mind mapping will give you another perspective on how exploratory testing could be more structured. The point is that even though you exercise your free will and choose exploratory testing you could still organize the discoveries you do during the process. Use it in order to ease your work.
In conclusion, I would like to tell you that you should use which way you enjoy the most and which way empowers you to do a better job. Focus on quality, focus on being the best and deliver what your client expected from you. What the hell, use both exploratory testing and scripted testing if you can. Just make sure it doesn’t affect your work.
If you already used them both share your experience with us. Also, do you have other questions about how to plan exploratory testing? If yes, just ask us!