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What is Exploratory Testing and How Does it Help

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Discovery and exploration are innate tendencies of the human nature. Powered by human curiosity, exploration has unearthed new continents and new horizons in ages past. This curiosity exists even in the somewhat ‘serious’ realm of Exploratory Testing that informs and drives some aspects of modern software testing practices. Software testing professionals would define exploratory testing as an unscripted technique aimed at unearthing glitches residing within a software application.

What is Exploratory Testing

Understanding the Application

Exploratory Testing enables test engineers to gain a suitable understanding of a software application, making it a crucial form of testing. It allows testers to explore ‘the nuts and bolts’ of an application – test the various mechanics that power functionality inside the application, and discover any inconsistencies in the code underlying the application under test. Essentially, Exploratory Testing interrogates the software development process that preceded the creation of the software product. Testers may also undertake regression testing exercises on a product in the course of Exploratory Testing.

Keeping an Open Mind

Software testers who execute Exploratory Testing practices may tackle the application from any direction – meaning that software testers have a wide berth in terms of the choice of action in designing and undertaking such tests. The manual mode of testing represents the keynote of test execution that drives Exploratory Testing in the current times. Veteran testers, advocate that test coverage must be designed keeping in mind the interests of the end-user; this implies the tester must think like the customer while running the tests. Using an ad hoc approach makes this form of testing more user-friendly. However, there are certain sub-sets of Exploratory Testing wherein testing professionals devise and follow strategy-based testing routines.

Timing is Crucial

As a method of testing modern software applications, Exploratory Testing creates distinct advantages for the software development and testing industry. It supports testers to design custom test coverage plans, thereby interrogating specific applications from different points of view. In addition, most testing professionals plan Exploratory Testing schedules at points in time wherein most features inside a software application have attained completion. However, certain test professionals hold the view that Exploratory Testing should be deployed in earlier phases of application development. This divergence in views persists in the modern day, but in no way removes from the solid benefits of the techniques used for Exploratory Testing.

Distinct Value

Testing organizations that allow test professionals to undertake Exploratory Testing techniques gain the distinct benefit of leveraging the technical skills, knowledge, and work experience of software testing engineers. In addition, skilled testers adept at using such techniques can deliver distinct value to the work outcomes of testing teams. Further, Exploratory Testing helps deliver high quality products by relying on the sense of accomplishment of a test engineer. This is primarily achieved when testing engineers exploit their human acumen to connect with the end user and devise different forms of test scenarios to examine an application. Different forms of input data and test results add firepower to Exploratory Testing systems and techniques.

Organized Documentation

Engineers working on test coverage activities for Exploratory Testing require fewer forms of testing documentation. This affords them a greater quantum of time to drive pure software testing activities, thereby creating elevated business value in the form of thorough outcomes. The scenario also promotes a highly experimental approach as a keynote for Exploratory Testing activities. In addition, testers that favor this form of testing can focus on analyzing key realms of an application, generate significant levels of feedback, and recommend the necessary reforms. This implies a fruitful use of time for a tester and optimal usage of the resources within an organization.

Finding more Bugs

Certain empirical studies suggest Exploratory Testing mechanisms are more efficient in unearthing bugs and glitches in software applications – this stems from the very nature of these tests. For instance, a multi-pronged testing strategy empowers Exploratory Testing professionals to detect and unearth software bugs of varying severity. This proves beneficial to the master development processes in the form of quick remedial measures that address such defect, thereby driving higher levels of efficiency in the outcomes generated by Exploratory Testing systems and practices.

Quick Changes

The world of modern software development and testing thrives on speed of execution and delivery. The techniques and practices that underlie Exploratory Testing confer high levels of flexibility in outcomes, thereby driving crucial improvements in the overall design and function of a software product. Expert testers hold the view that the signature lack of baselines and ground rules in Exploratory Testing techniques represents a major asset that drives the utility value of such forms of testing. Further, such forms of testing exert a superb effect on the skillsets of professional (and amateur) testers – thereby elevating the skill sets of the testing personnel leading to a better hold on software testing challenges and assignments.

In Conclusion

Through this exposition, it becomes easier to appreciate the role and utility of exploratory testing in the domain of modern software development. Ongoing research is expected to refine the systems and practices that power such forms of software testing and verification. We excel not just in this form of testing, but are leaders in all forms of software testing – connect with us and rest easy knowing that your software and applications are in expert hands.


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