Test Process Management (TPM) is concerned with controlling all the testing activities and the automated support tools used in a project, within a dedicated management environment. TPM is based upon a professionally recognised industry standard - 'The V Model', which supports each stage of the system development life cycle. The V-Model demonstrates the complexity of relationships between each stage of the development life cycle and acknowledges that for every stage within the development there is an associated stage of testing.
It shows that testing does not have to occur once the 'code' has been delivered which is what you need to have to begin test execution. The testing can start early with analysing the requirements and creating test criteria of 'What' you need to test.
Quality control points exist for every stage within the life cycle. Once the test preparation has been completed the quality control point would normally take the form of a review providing sign-off for that stage. The system should only be ready to go live once 'All high level requirements have been met', or put another way 'When we have successfully tested the exit criteria'.
Faults found earliest in this process are least costly to correct, generally under 20% of the cost of correcting the same error post implementation. Therefore there is significant financial benefit from monitoring and managing testing to identify and perform corrections at the least costly opportunity.
The objective is to ensure every element of the system is validated at the earliest possible stage, to the quality criteria set out by the business managers, providing a comprehensible and manageable audit trail of the systems actual capabilities.
The benefits of this level of control and management over quality assurance are compounded when changes are introduced. With a manual system, checking the impact of even minor changes is complex, time consuming and prone to human error. With T-Plan this is a simple 'What if?' function of reporting impacts of the proposed changes at both technical and business levels. This allows the risk of potential error/fault correction to be identified, together with potential for 'knock-on' or efficiency costs to the business.