QASymphony

Philip Howard

Written By:
Published: 14th November, 2016
Content Copyright © 2016 Bloor. All Rights Reserved.

QASymphony is one of the new breed of test (case) management vendors that are challenging the hegemony of HPE (soon to be Micro Focus) ALM and QC. Given HPE's dismal track record with software assets the only surprising thing is that these challengers didn't arise earlier. QASymphony, for example, didn't start developing its qTest product until 2011. On the other hand, it has focused specifically on replacing HPE QC and it provides a self-service migration capability especially for this purpose. To migrate from lower end tools like TestRail or Zephyr Enterprise you can import test cases via Excel.

From a technical perspective, the main selling point of qTest is integration with Atlassian Jira through a free plugin on the Atlassian Marketplace, which more than 80% of their customers use. This plugin facilitates real-time integration for both defects (what Jira was originally built for) and requirements (what it is increasingly used for). This integration is rather different from the way that other products integrate with Jira, in that requirements and defects are managed directly in JIRA and viewable in a read-only state within qTest. While the ability to edit a requirement or defect in the testing tool is restricted, the company's argument is that it provides a more efficient and scalable integration with no maintenance or permissions loopholes to worry about.

While we are on the subject of integration, the company has recently announced a partnership with Blueprint Software and integration with that company's Storyteller, which is a tool that generates user stories from requirements. Similarly, there is integration with several popular automation frameworks (including Selenium) as well as popular continuous integration tools (including Jenkins).

Finally, there are various components within the qTest platform. Actually four: qTest for test case management, qTest Scenario for Jira for test-driven, behaviour-driven and acceptance test-driven development (TDD, BDD and ATDD respectively), qTest Explorer and qTest Insights. Of the last two components, the former records what you have done and documents it while the latter (version 2.0 has just been released) provides reporting and dashboarding on relevant metrics. There will be a fifth module released towards the end of this year. I haven't looked at this but, according to the company, "this will be the first test case management solution to fully embrace DevOps and continuous delivery workflows, with shared reporting into qTest Insights".

We can't say that we have looked at every test management product in the market so we can't confirm the suggestion in this article that qTest is the best. Moreover, if you look at the comments appended to this article you will see that there are various other tools on the market that the author of this article presumably did not look at. However, there seems to be no doubt that QA Symphony is one of the leading challengers in this market, if not the leading one. Note that we use the term "leading challenger" advisedly: while qTest may be leading in terms of new sales that is probably not the case when it comes to either revenues or installed base. In the former case this will be especially true since qTest is only available by subscription (in Cloud or on-premises) as opposed to perpetual license and maintenance fees. Note that this is a big deal in the testing space because of the preference for Opex versus Capex.

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