software testing process

Did you know that poor quality software resulted in operation failures that cost as much as $1.56 trillion in 2020? If proper checks had been done during the development process of some of these software products, a lot of these operational failures could have been avoided.

Testing is an important phase in the software development process and is something every development company should invest in. By understanding the rationale behind building software for testing and the steps to follow, you will be better equipped to create high-quality products that meet all the necessary criteria.

In this article, we will take a look at 10 of the most important software testing steps. Keep reading to learn more!

Definition of software testing?

This is an investigation or evaluation conducted on a software product to check whether it meets the expected minimum requirements, is free from defects, and will perform the task for which it was designed. By running tests on your software, you can identify errors, bugs, or missing features, and learn about how it can be improved.

There are various testing steps in software testing and some of these steps will be discussed in more detail in the following sections.

1. Plan development

One of the first testing steps in software engineering is to develop a plan. This involves developing an outline of the quality check that will be conducted on a particular application. A good plan can help define the scope of a project and ensure that all aspects of it are covered.

2. Test requirement gathering

Once a plan has been created, it’s important to understand the requirements that need to be verified in order to determine if the product meets its objectives. As part of this step, you might want to gather some input from stakeholders and IT team members in order to prepare the test documents.

3. Test planning analysis

Here, the team lead will analyze the product and come up with a detailed plan for testing it. This involves identifying all the possible trial activities and determining which ones are likely to be useful in finding errors.

4. Case design

This part of the step by step software testing process involves designing test cases based on the requirements of the project, user requirements, and application features. Not only should your design cover all possible scenarios that can occur during the examination, but it should also include traceability matrices that will give an overall picture of the reliability of the product.

5. Environment setup

Test environments are needed to conduct a quality check on applications under development, so it’s important to make sure they have everything needed for the job at hand—from bug reporting tools to architecture that can support the product. An unsuitable environment might prevent the QA team from doing their jobs.

6. Test execution

This is where you critically examine the actual software that you are going to release to your customers. During this phase of the testing steps, the team executes as many tests as possible within the time frame allowed.

7. Bug tracking and reporting

This step involves creating a bug report that describes the problem with each test case that failed so that it can be fixed by the developers. 

8. Record result

After testing your product thoroughly, it’s time to record the results so that you can improve on them in future releases. 

9. Closure

When all the phases have been completed successfully, they should be closed out and a closure report should be generated in line with already prepared exit criteria. This test closure report will be used to communicate the result of the findings with key stakeholders.

The exit criteria are for indicating that the cycle has been completed and typically include the following components:

  • Testing covered all business and technical requirements.
  • 90% of all test cases were successfully executed.
  • The report lists all critical defects discovered in the test process.

10. Install in a production environment

Finally, you can’t know how software work if you don’t have it installed in a production environment. Once the software product has scaled through the steps above, the next thing is to run it in a production environment where you can see how it interfaces with other programs, operating systems, and everyday processes.


There you have it. Ten essential steps that can help you turn out a reliable software product. 

Of course, no two cycles are alike, so you may need to tailor these steps to fit your software testing workflow. But now you have a good starting point. 

And if you’re looking for ways to make your software testing lifecycle more efficient, be sure to check out aqua, a test management system which saves hours of time for testers and their managers. We can facilitate your software testing needs.