Home / Educational Content / PeopleSoft / PeopleSoft Spotlight Series: Regression Testing Strategy Using PeopleSoft Test Framework

PeopleSoft Spotlight Series: Regression Testing Strategy Using PeopleSoft Test Framework

PeopleSoft-Spotlight-Series

A recent PeopleSoft Spotlight Series video addressed three key points of interest regarding regression testing:

  1. The importance of regression testing with Selective Adoption
  2. Key parts of a regression testing strategy
  3. Regression testing with PeopleSoft Test Framework (PTF)

Importance of Regression Testing with Selective Adoption

Selective Adoption is the overall lifecycle process in PeopleSoft Applications, and it changed the way you maintain PeopleSoft Applications. Prior to Selective Adoption, the maintenance schedule was determined by PeopleSoft. Now, it is determined by the user. Before Selective Adoption, features were available only in upgrades, but now, they are available as bundles without an upgrade. With Selective Adoption, users are able to change their mindset, their maintenance schedule, and their budget. It helps keep your systems more agile.

It is important to make your system current on a 12-to-18-month basis and solve critical bug fixes to improve productivity and production. Additionally, you will want to address any legislative requirements and resolve any security vulnerabilities. Incorporating and adopting new features into your lifecycle is also important.

Selective Adoption also helps improve tools that help apply change and minimize the impact of customizations. Some tools that apply changes include PeopleSoft Update Images, PeopleSoft Update Manager, Change Assistant, and PeopleSoft Test Framework. You can also minimize the impact of customizations by changing your priorities for customizations and changing the way customizations are made in your system.

A few important things to think about when it comes to automated regression testing with Selective Adoption include:

  • Automated Testing will improve the time that it takes to validate change.
  • How much of project time is spent testing?
  • Unit testing is only a small part of the project.
  • Regression testing is critical and can be very costly.

Key Parts of a Regression Testing Strategy

To understand the key parts of regression testing strategies, we must first understand the different types of testing.

  • Smoke testing determines if the system works.
  • Unit testing determines if the change applied works as a stand-alone.
  • System testing determines if the system ran as expected.
  • Integration testing determines if the system integrated with other systems as expected.
  • Performance testing determines if the system performed as expected.
  • Load testing determines if the system can perform as expected under a heavy load.
  • Regression testing is the selective retesting of a system or parts of a system to verify that modifications have not caused unintended effects and that the system still complies with its specified requirements.

When developing an approach for regression testing, you need to determine the need and the scope for the testing. A definitive approach must also be present as well as setting the criteria for successful testing.

When identifying the need for regression testing, it is vital to look at these three questions:

  1. Does your organization need automated regression testing?
  2. How have your testing needs changed with Selective Adoption?
  3. Would automated tests or manual tests better meet the need or your organization?

Manual testing is easily understood, requires little commitment from IT staff, and can be the least expensive option if it is only done once. Automated testing requires collaboration between the business analyst and the test creator and must be created, documented, and maintained.  It also becomes more cost-efficient over time.

It is important to remember the following pieces of information when defining the scope for your regression testing:

  • You must define the test cases.
  • It is vital to automate parts of the system most susceptible to regression issues and parts that contain the most customizations.
  • Automate a product area and start slow and grow over time.

When defining the approach, you will need to:

  1. Determine the tools that will be used
  2. Determine the standards for documenting test cases
  3. Determine what data will be used for testing
  4. Determine how the test case is created
  5. Determine how the test results are validated
  6. Determine how the tests will be run

Throughout this process, it is also important to identify entry and exit criteria for when the system is ready for regression testing and when the system can leave regression testing. How will you address pass/fail scenarios and confirmation that a defect is repeatable?

Regression Testing with PeopleSoft Test Framework (PTF)

When performing regression testing with PeopleSoft Test Framework (PTF), there are a few key facts to remember.

  • The Record and Playback Regression Test tool captures the online use of a PeopleSoft Application and plays it back online.
  • PTF is integrated with PeopleSoft technology; therefore, PTF Client is secured with PeopleSoft user IDs and roles.
  • Tests are stored in a PeopleSoft database and accessible to anyone with authorization.
  • There are built-in capabilities for PeopleSoft applications.
  • PTF Regression Testing is provided free to all customers of PeopleSoft applications.
  • PTF only works with PeopleSoft applications.

The same as previously, when using PTF to implement your regression testing strategy, you will need to determine the need, determine the scope, define the approach, and set the criteria. In regard to determining the need and scope, it is typically outside of the realm of the Automated Testing tool, and the Maintenance Report will tell you if a test is broken.

It is important to keep in mind that there are several barriers to automation with PTF. PTF is rich in feature automated record/playback utility and therefore requires time to get proficient.  Collaboration between IT and the business analyst is absolutely crucial. Additionally, the developer will be involved in creating the test case.

When addressing the approach that will be taken with PTF, it is important to determine the standards for documenting test cases. PFT test cases are stored in the test repository in a PeopleSoft application database. The hierarchy is defined in the test explorer. There must be a name and description for each test case and support for comments in the test script.

Three key pieces of information must be taken into consideration when determining the data for testing:

  1. Test cases can be built to discover the test case at test execution time.
  2. The test case can use a fixed instance of data.
  3. Factoring in virtualization and cloud computing to allow refreshing is also important.

There are also three things to consider when determining which tests to run.

  1. Look at the Test Coverage Report, which is based on the scope of change and will show which tests to run and what is not covered by automation.
  2. The Usage Monitor can be used to track the objects covered by a test case.
  3. Pass/fail criteria are built-into the tests.

There are numerous key features of PTF. PTF is specifically designed to interact with internal PeopleSoft structures. The Test Maintenance Report will identify which tests could be affected by change. The Test Coverage Report will identify which tests to execute. The Start_Login action will allow tests to be portable. There is access to system variables and reserved words, and there is conditional logic and global variables. Page prompting to bypass the menu is also available.

To learn more about regression testing with PeopleSoft Test Framework, check out the video below.

Additional Resources

COLLABORATE 20 will take place April 19-23, 2020 at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada! Don’t miss this chance to share inspiration, insights, and solutions with your peers, vendors, and the Oracle team! Register before March 6, 2020, to take advantage of Early Bird pricing.

If you’re looking for more PeopleSoft content, join us next year at RECONNECT 20, the premier deep-dive PeopleSoft focused event of the year! The event will take place July 21-23, 2020 in St. Louis, Missouri. Keep an eye out for more information on this event!