UAT stands for User Acceptance Test. It’s a phase in the software development process where a group of users tests newly made software to validate that the software is working accordingly and it also meets the requirements. UAT is also known as Beta testing, application testing, and end-user testing. There are lots of advantages of conducting UAT. Some key advantages are:
1. UAT helps to cut down the project cost
2. UAT ensure the accuracy of the system
3. Conducting UAT can save lots of time
4. UAT reduces the change requests of users
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What Is User Acceptance Testing?
User accepting testing is considered the last phase of the software testing process. It has three parts:
User: Here, users are those people who will use the software but are not involved in the project that creates the software. UAT gives users the opportunity to see what the software is about and give feedback to the development team before it is deployed for real-life use.
Acceptance: So the system is perfect. Therefore, the developer team must ensure that their system is acceptable before it is launched. So, UAT gives the opportunity to determine if the software is working properly whether the end-users could accept what has been built.
Testing: When it comes to acceptance of the software, testing is a must. Without the test, there is no way the developer team can ensure the software is working properly. So UAT enables people to use the system to do real work in a test environment to be sure that the software meets the business needs.
The Role Of A Business Analyst In UAT
A business analyst is considered as an all-rounder for a project because he/she understands the entire system from the developer’s perspectives as well as the user’s perspectives. Therefore, a business analyst plays a very important role in the user acceptance test. Below are some key reasons why a business analyst should involve in a UAT:
1. A business analyst has the knowledge to understand and validate if the system meets its requirements
2. A Business Analyst can receive direct feedback from the end-users and then analyze the feedback to make the right correction
3. Involving in a UAT gives the business analyst more opportunity to get to know the client/ user and his view. It will be very helpful for future projects
4. After analyzing the user feedback the business analyst can make these documents:
a) UAT plan
b) UAT Test cases
c) Defect Log
The Planning Of UAT Tests
UAT test planning is different from other types of testing because its purpose is different. For other tastes, our main focus is to mind the defects but in UAT we focus on how the system will actually be used in practice. So the UAT test planning should be like this:
1. A business analyst should create a separate test plan for each type of User who will participate in UAT
2. Every test plan must include each business scenario that will be used by the system
3. The plan must include all types of business scenarios including the special cases and error cases
4. There should be proper instructions for testing each business scenario:
a) For the new functionality of the system, the instructions should include step-by-step, how-to, etc.
b) For existing functionality, the instructions should just tell the tester what to do
c) If the data is important to the test then the instructions should be precise about the data and the user must use the data
5. While the UAT testing is going on, the business analyst must ensure that all the requirements are tested by the users for the best result
6. You can add individual user role in the test plans to achieve complete UAT coverage of each requirement
When You Should Do The UAT
Most professionals consider the UAT as the last step of the project before launching it. But implementing this step at the last moment of a project creates significant risk, because; if there are problems in the UAT then it will delay the launching of the software. So the business analyst should communicate with the developer team and conduct the UAT as early as possible. Here is when you should conduct a UAT:
1. After developing the software for a few weeks you can conduct mini-UATs with appropriate users to evaluate chosen functionality
2. You can break the project into phases of a few months and build certain functionality in each phase; then conduct a UAT after the end of each phase
3. If it’s not possible to split the project into small parts then you can do a UAT after the development of each function of the software
4. In the Walking Skeleton approach, the skeleton of the software is built first. So, first, you can do the UAT of the Skelton. Then the development team adds a function-at-a-time to the skeleton and you continue doing UAT after each function
Different Steps Of UAT
The user acceptance test is a step-by-step process. It is very important to follow the steps accordingly to get the best result out of the test. Here are the steps:
Analyze The Requirements: This is the 1st step of a UAT. A business analyst should analyze the requirements properly before conducting a UAT session.
Prepare The UAT Plan: Next step is to identify the major test scenarios and prepare the UAT plan accordingly. UAT plan is very important because it helps to identify test cases that validate the deliverables.
Create UAT Test Cases: Test cases are very important because they are the steps to the user to guide the system in testing. A business analyst should write the proper test cases to conduct a good UA Test.
Run The Test: This is the step where the test will run. The participant must be the real-world end users of the business.
Record The Results: In this step, the progress and issues should be documented in a defect log. Then the defects have to be documented to evaluate and fix.
Confirm The Objectives Are Met: This is the final step of a UAT where a business analyst has to confirm if the business objectives are met by the software. If the requirements haven’t been fulfilled then the product will send for further development.
I hope the above information has helped you learn about the UAT. If you have any questions then leave them in the comment section. I will get to you with the answer.
Magalie D. is a Diploma holder in Public Administration & Management from McGill University of Canada. She shares management tips here in MGTBlog when she has nothing to do and gets some free time after working in a multinational company at Toronto.