Upon reading the email I responded asking what the questioner considered a formal test plan. Then I explained how we use Mind Maps to detail test designs and that works for us as a “test plan”. Yet I kept wondering when the last time I wrote a test case was so I went through our system and found a timestamp on the last created case. It read July 7th, 2011.
Curious still, I sent an email to my developer and asked when was the last time he *saw* me create a test case in Spira. His response was:
“I don’t know, didn’t you create some for the release before the DW or something? Maybe it wasn’t test cases, but I’ve seen you do things that take forever in Spira, I always thought they were test plans or test cases.”“…I’ve seen you do things that take forever!" Yup that’s what writing out test cases will do. They take time to write out, time to “execute”, don’t necessarily help the tester plan their testing, and are abandoned after their use. After numerous years it was time to move onto something more effective.