The Heart of All Things Testing

Exploratory testing is the process of learning a product, designing and executing test cases, and interpreting test results – all at the same time. It’s an all-in-one approach to
testing; the perfect complement to specification-based manual and automated testing.

In itself, a software test is just as a question you ask of your product to gain new information. No matter what form it takes, exploratory testing is always a search for information.

Exploratory testing gives you a greater scope of risk coverage.

Exploratory testing is a powerful approach for analyzing potential risks, whereas specification-based testing is best suited for monitoring known risks.

Automated and manual testing are the best ways to achieve comprehensible risk coverage by conquering your product thoroughly in a structured fashion. This implies the application of solid concepts, such as test case design, test data management, orchestrated service virtualization, UI & API test automation approaches, risk-based testing, etc.  As a result, any kind of specification-based testing approach mainly requires that testers follow a rigid set of rules in a structured fashion.

Following Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War”, we call these testers Samurais. Why, you may ask? Well, as a samurai (aka tester), you are usually just one part of a larger team. You need to make sure that everybody on your team speaks the same language in order to easily integrate new members into your team at any time. As a result, these people usually do not have much freedom to make decisions on how to perform testing.

In contrast, the purpose of exploratory testing is to use various  perspectives to scout and explore new territories in your product and find the most severe defects as early as possible. Rather than following rigid rules, this discipline requires testers who are creative, flexible, and highly adaptive to change. We call these testers Ninjas. Why, you may ask? Well, exploratory testing isn’t really a team exercise at its core, and so it requires people who are self-managed, self-structured and cross functional.

That is why exploratory testing gives you the best risk coverage.

It is the battle for the highest quality at the fastest speed and lowest costs that introduces these two forces. Both of these forces, however, are necessary for success. We call something properly tested only once it has been checked by efficient automation based on a solid test case design, and explored by the richness of a person’s intellect. For us, that is the agile equation of motion.

As a result, combining exploratory testing with other good old-fashioned testing practices is one of the most efficient ways to maximize the effectiveness of your testing, increase your product quality, and decrease risk. Studies have shown that the amount of critical defects discovered increase when exploratory testing is carried out alongside traditional specification-based testing.

Download the Whitepaper

to find out more about:

  • Why exploratory testing gives you the best risk coverage.
  • Why well-executed exploratory testing lies at the heart of excellent testing.
  • Exploratory testing is a natural by-product of good testing.
  • Exploratory testing in a nutshell.
  • Session-based testing
  • Tosca Testsuite’s Exploratory Testing Assistant
  • and more…