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Methodologies

There are a number of commonly used Test Methodologies. It is important to remember that these are guidelines on how to work and every company will interpret these guidelines slightly differently. It is certainly possible that either by design or just through the sheer need to make the programme work that a combination of these methodologies will be used in a ‘best of breed’ approach.

Agile:

This method allows software developers, business resources and test analysts to work within a self managed cross functional team. The team can start build and test together with minimal specifications in written form and produce output for the end customer to review. The approach allows the development, business and test teams the opportunity to inspect, collaborate and adapt in a very flexible manner over an agreed short timeframe.

Rapid Application Development (RAD):

This method allows software developers to put a prototype together based on the requirements and to then compare the two at the end of the build. This method is good for programmes which are small in size and where the requirements are both known to a low level and not subject to large change.

V-Model:

This method is named after the graphic that is used to demonstrate the methodf. It has been the Industry Standard Methodology until fairly recently for most programmes and still provides huge benefits. The model itself makes use of all resources at all times as depicted in the graphic where the Test Function works on User Acceptance Test Scripting at the same time as the development teams start their work.

Waterfall:

The waterfall method is a series of consecutive activities that are all dependent on the previous steps being completed. There is little wriggle room to adapt the previous steps and test execution is the penultimate activity which means defects are found so late that they cannot always be fixed in time. This approach is easy to understand and manage but leads to wasted time and effort from many resources.