Improve software quality with model-based testing
Business process models created in the blueprinting phase of implementing ERP solutions can easily be leveraged by the BPM-X Test Case Generator software for generating end-to-end test cases.
For each business process model a set of test cases is automatically generated in different formats and tools like Excel®, SAP® Test Workbench, HP Quality Center or test case models.
Due to yes/no and other kinds of decisions inside a process model a typical process flow contains different potential paths when going from the start to the end of a business process. The test cases are generated for the process paths depending upon different algorithms like statement, branch or path coverage. In this way probabilities of single logical decisions may be used to compute the overall probability of a specific test case to be executed.
Motivation for model-case-testing
Standard ERP software has a comprehensive support for business processes. There are three challenging aspects in the quality assurance of ERP-based business processes:
- The manual creation of test case results in high project efforts.
- The traditional design of test cases blocks qualified and costly team members.
- Insufficient integration testing means low production efficiency and high maintenance costs
- Not all relevant test cases are captured.
- Incomplete tests may have serious impacts on production environment.
- Untested scenarios and technical interfaces lead to failures in the productive ERP system.
- Untested changes of risk-related processes (e.g. SOX) could have critical consequences.
- Bad test coverage potentially leads to poor software quality and so may have a high business impact.
- An incomplete matching of the test data will increase the negative impact.
- Insufficient reviews of work products and deliverables add to the negative impact.
The business process models or diagrams created in blueprinting phase of an ERP solution are imported into the BPM-X Test Case Generator. Because of BPM-X’s flexible adapters the model data coming from any BPM or BPA tool can be supported.
Figure 1: From Process Models to Execution of end-to-end Test Cases
The number of generated end-to-end test cases depends upon the selected test coverage algorithm.
Test cases can be delivered as Excel® sheets or models compatible with HP Quality Center (HP QC). Based upon these deliverables integration or regression tests may then be executed in testing tools like SAP® Solution Manager’s Test Workbench or HP QC. Other tools can simply be integrated through BPM-X adapters.
The BPM-X Test Case Generator creates deliverables that serve as templates for test automation with automation suites like SAP® eCATT or HP QuickTest.
The software-supported approach to testing relies upon the automatic generation of test cases thereby making isolated functional tests, incomplete coverage of the business logic and disregarded technical interfaces in the data flow a thing of the past. BPM-X technology ensures the completeness of the test coverage and so improves the quality of ERP-supported business processes. Here are some more benefits:
- The business knowledge preserved in process models is leveraged for testing.
- Better communication between developers and testers.
- Capability to automatically generate many non-repetitive and useful tests.
- Using test cases as templates to define test automation saves a lot of time.
- The update of test suites due to changed requirements is eased.
- End-to-end test cases permit an easier development for automated regression and integration tests.
- Capability to assess software quality.
- Overall shorter schedules, lower cost, and better quality are achieved.
- Reuse existing business process models, independent of the BPM and BPA tool or modeling language used (e.g. EPC or BPMN™).
- Option to select different test coverage algorithms: statement, branch, path, …
- Create deliverables as end-to-end process diagrams, Excel® files or BPMN™/XPDL models
- Identify ERP transactions, technical interfaces, input/output work products (i.e. data) for testing in a process flow.
- Utilize test tools such as SAP® Solution Manager Test Workbench, HP Quality Center, IBM Rational® Quality Manager or simply use Microsoft Excel® as testing tool.