There’s also this third concept, called Quality Policy, and the three bind nicely together. The Quality Policy tells you why you – is it for compliance, for customers’ satisfaction, for prevention of capital gains, etc. Then the second concept is the , that should tell you what general methods will be used to ensure sufficient quality of the products – because it will probably differ between ensuring quality of Java programs, Haskell programs, Web, Desktop, Mobile apps, software targeted at people with disabilities, etc. Those are separate test strategies, yet they should be organisation-wide and compliant with the quality policy. Then as a specific project looms, you come up with a specific test , that takes this specific project’s goals, stakeholders and risks, confronts them with the overarching test , and tells you what, how and for how long you would be testing in this specific case. Moreover, as the development process in increasingly iterative, you’d probably come up with a master test plan, that would be realised by the whole project, and then for each iteration draft up a specific test plan. The test plans have this nice feature, that allows you to look back at it at the development phase’s end and see if you did what you had set out to do. If yes, great – see if you’re happy with the result, because maybe your planning could be even more on point next time. If not, try to find out what was the obstacle that had prevented you from realising the plan.

And of course, in most agile teams that I had witnessed, you can just trash all of those concepts, because “we’re agile”, and “we don’t want to constraint ourselves”. But hey, that’s none of my problem…

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