Importance of metrics and measurement in SDLC

During all the software development life cycle it is very important to apply metrics and measurement because metrics and measurement set expectations. If there are well established metrics and measurements in project then the test analyst can easily track and report quality results to the management.

If the metrics & measurements are not established properly then the assessment of software quality is purely subjective which arises disputes at the end of development life cycle.
You can consider some the following areas where you can apply metrics and measurement. This list is not exhaustive, you can have metrics for lot more things.

  1. Schedule of project
  2. Coverage
  3. Planned & actual cost
  4. Workload & resource usage
  5. Product risk & project risk
  6. Defects

While doing test planning we set the expectations for the stakeholders or we set the baselines for them. If you have established the baselines the test reporting is consistent to the management and you can avoid subjective assessment of testing.

In software testing there are three main areas which needs to be considered while thinking about metrics and measurement.

  1. Defining test metrics
    Small and quality set of metrics should be chosen, large set of metrics should be avoided as it is very confusing to understand large set of metrics. Metrics should also be uniform and everybody in team should agree with it.
  2. Tracking test metrics
    After defining the metrics the next step is to track the metrics. Since tracking is a constant activity so its always nice to automate the tracking part. Automation reduces time required to track the metrics, analyze them and measure them.
  3. Reporting
    Reporting of the metrics is the most important step, you should report test metrics to stakeholders so that they have clear picture of project progress.