Software Testing Strategy Document represented by note pad and pen

When to Write a Software Testing Strategy Document

A software testing strategy document is a reference software that developers, project managers, and software testing engineers use to outline their software testing strategies. They help keep track of important decisions, check past results, and ensure that all client and test teams are in agreement regarding the purposes of these tests. However, a software testing strategy document is not always necessary. Sometimes, prioritizing a software test strategy document can actually impede your testing results.

But how do you tell when you need a formal software testing strategy and when you don’t? The answer is context. You must consider which types of tests need official documentation and which do not. A clear understanding of software testing types and the documentation that accompanies them can reduce lost time and optimize efficacy.

Why a Software Testing Strategy Document is Useful

A document outlining your software testing strategy is especially useful when used as a reference document or communication tool. After all, when you’re planning your testing strategy, it’s crucial to keep the project manager, the testing team and the client are all on the same page.

Typical questions a test strategy document addresses include:

  • What type of testing does the client expect the software testing team to perform?
  • Are there any critical terms or thresholds that need to be clearly defined so that all parties are working under the same assumptions?
  • What are the agreed-upon values of those terms and thresholds?

Whenever there are parameters like these that need to be defined, having a software testing strategy document that everyone can reference becomes incredibly useful.

Strategy documents also function as a tool for tracking results and documenting the decisions testing engineers’ make during the testing cycle. For example, what if preliminary compatibility testing finds that the software works well on current browsers but not on older versions? The team may decide to focus on more targeted testing of that browser instead of other browsers. The testing strategy document is the perfect place to record this discovery and the resulting decisions.

Why a Test Document Wouldn’t be Useful

A software testing document is not always necessary. In fact, highly formal documents can actually reduce efficiency. This is because they require more time and resources to match the strategy and notes to their specific testing process. Software testing strategies work best when they are exploratory and thus able to adjust as new data becomes available.

Of course, software testing strategy documents are completely useless if no one reads them. If neither the client nor the testing engineers require documentation, a testing strategy would have no more value than a blank piece of paper. Keep your document concise to ensure your time and energy remain focused on testing rather than a mere formality.


Software testing should always have a clear goal. Without a test strategy document, it can be hard to track progress to meet that goal. Improve your software testing strategy with a test document from iBeta QA. Contact us to learn more.