Key Test Management Documentation in Organizations following Testing Best Practices

It is very important to document the process and other important activities in testing. Test management documents help to give a direction to whole team and everyone is on the same page. I agree that properly managing the testing certainly involves more than just creating test documentation, but putting some structure around test process is always helpful for test management and that is why test documentation is very important aspect of test management.

Different organizations refer different names for same documents but in ISTQB Advanced Syllabus it is tried to structure this situation by defining the key management document types that are followed by all organizations which are following testing best practices. These documents are as follows:

Test Policy Document

Test policy document describes the organizations testing philosophy, objectives and key metrics for testing. Test Policy is independent of any project or test levels, it is a document which describes “WHY” of testing for the organization.

Test Strategy Document (Also known as Test handbook)

Test Strategy Document describes organizations general method of testing. It is ideally independent of any project but defines the approach for testing across different projects. This defines the project and product risk management, test levels to be included and other testing activities that would occur during testing.

Master Test Plan (Also known as Project Test Plan)

Master test plan spans for all test levels of the project and describes the application of test strategy to the project. This includes what specific test levels will occur and the relationship among these test levels. It also addresses how to manage gaps and overlays among those test levels. Master test plan also describes activities like bug reporting guidelines for the project.

Level Test Plan (Also known as Phase Test Plan)

Level test plan describes the test activities for the specific test level. It expands the master test plan and focuses on the particular test level. For example, System Test Plan for system testing level and Integration Test Plan for integration test level.