Because Jira has been so widely adopted and is preferred by both technical and non-technical users, many development teams have sought to make Jira a test case management tool as well. Testing with Jira offers certain advantages, including the ability to consolidate workflows for developers, testers, and quality assurance (QA) teams on a single platform. But a Jira testing tool also presents significant challenges that developers and testers must overcome to achieve software testing goals.
Interested in a Tricentis Jira testing solution? Explore our Jira testing tool
Capabilities of test management tools
When considering Jira as a testing tool, it’s important to review the tasks and capabilities that a Jira test case management solution would require. To simplify the tasks of planning, monitoring, and auditing test execution, test management tools should perform several essential functions.
- Automate execution. Test management tools should automate many of the tasks involved in planning, executing, and tracking tests.
- Ensure efficiency. As the number of tests grows to the hundreds or thousands, testing tools must enable the testing process to be as efficient as possible to meet aggressive development timelines. The ability to reuse tests across modules and projects is essential.
- Maximize coverage. Test coverage metrics let developers and testers know what percentage of code is being tested, which helps to gauge the amount of risk in the testing process. Test management tools should not only provide coverage metrics but help testers determine which additional tests should be run to increase coverage.
- Track outcomes. The results of tests must be tracked, communicated to appropriate stakeholders, and stored for future reference.
- Prove compliance. Testing tools should allow development teams to easily prove compliance with a variety of quality standards and regulatory frameworks.
- Compare tests requirements. Test management solutions should enable developers and testers to determine whether the functionality of an application meets the requirements of the project.
The pros and cons of Jira as a testing tool
As a testing tool, Jira lacks any native testing functionality. To manage testing within the Jira platform, testers must customize Jira’s test case issue types or user stories to track test progress. And while these steps allow Jira to fill certain requirements, there are still significant gaps in capabilities in a Jira test management solution.
- Lack of specific functionality. Jira simply doesn’t have the native functionality that most test management tools provide.
- Inefficient processes. Jira requires users to click through more screens and walk through more steps when entering test cases and results. Most significantly, Jira doesn’t allow executions to run more than once or tests to be easily reused, which creates a lot of duplicated effort.
- Unable to scale. Jira has serious performance issues when the number of test cases stored on the system reaches into the tens or hundreds of thousands.
- Issues with coverage. Jira does not offer traceability reporting between issues and test case coverage. Jira also is unable to create a test case coverage report that covers manual execution, automatic execution, and session-based execution.
- No automatic test initiation. Testers cannot automatically launch tests within Jira.
Jira testing tool add-ons
Atlassian, the company that produces Jira, offers a number of add-ons in its marketplace that can be used for test management. These solutions extend the functionality of Jira and equip it with features that are better suited for testing. Add-on software generally tries to overcome some of Jira’s limitations by bringing together the groups of testing occurring in Jira, allowing testers to pull all the test cases into cycles or suites and to see the latest execution results for each group.
By adding features, Jira testing tool add-ons provide teams with more functionality and enable them to continue using the issue and project tracking tool that everyone is familiar with. But add-ons also have a variety of limitations that still leave Jira less than ideal as a testing tool.
- Add-ons still require more manual processes and extra steps than a dedicated test management solution.
- Work performed within the add-on is limited to a particular project, making it difficult to share test case objects across Jira projects. As a result, scaling becomes more difficult and testers must duplicate a great deal of work.
- Add-ons don’t solve Jira’s scalability problem — the software has limited scalability for storing high volumes of test results data, which is a serious issue for automated testing.
- Add-ons don’t provide the visibility into test execution history that developers and testers require.
Tricentis Test Management for Jira: A low-cost Jira plugin
Tricentis Test Management for Jira helps you manage planning, tracking, and reporting entirely within Jira. It comes with an intuitive UI and uses Jira issues to define requirements and test cases, ensuring that QA and development share visibility into a single record of testing. It can integrate with your automated testing tools, and unlike many of today’s Jira extensions, Test Management for Jira is low-cost and stays fast and performant as your team and projects grow – so you can scale without worry. Available for Jira Cloud.
Jira dedicated test management tools
Another option for teams that are determined to use a Jira testing tool is to integrate a dedicated test management solution with the Jira platform. With this approach, testers can access enterprise test features like automated testing support, configuration management, and CI integrations. Testers can also use test case repositories that are customized based on templates. Most importantly, dedicated test management tools enable teams to reuse test cases and share objects across different projects.
However, integrating a dedicated test management tool with Jira platform still has certain challenges:
- Full integration with Jira is not possible
- Depending on the open-source friendliness of the test management tool, teams may spend a great deal of time creating workarounds to make the integration work
- Testers must continue to manage permissions for artifact mapping
- Browser restrictions remain, adding complexity to the testing process
- Synchronizing databases between Jira and the testing tool requires a significant amount of effort
Tricentis qTest manager: a leading Jira testing tool
Tricentis qTest Manager is a test management solution that overcomes all the limitations of a Jira testing tool. Built with the enterprise team and Agile methodology in mind, qTest delivers real-time integration with Jira releases, issues, and defects. Testers can seamlessly integrate Jira issues and testing coverage, enabling testers to align tests, user stories, tasks, epics, or custom Jira issue types in order to ensure test coverage.
Additionally, Tricentis qTest Manager provides:
- Test automation traceability
- Flexible deployments
- Agile planning
- Real-time integration
- Smart scalability
- Enterprise reporting
- Reusable test cases
The Tricentis platform also provides solutions for intelligent test automation, performance testing, data integrity testing, app-native testing, and smart impact analysis.