Model-Based Testing MBT Based on BPMN™ Standard for Improved ERP Integration and Regression Testing

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BPM-X has released a new software component for model-based testing (MBT). In MBT business process models are used as input for the automatic creation of test cases. For the requirements definition of ERP software, the management discipline and methodology of Business Process Management (BPM) has an important role in the blueprinting project phase of an ERP implementation. Using the BPM methodology, the business requirements are documented and analyzed. Process improvement is achieved via better support of business activities by the ERP software. The blueprint consists of functional, organizational and system process models developed by a business process modeling or business process analysis tool prior to the realization phase of the customizing ERP software. Because of the complexity of ERP software, the integration and regression testing of ERP-supported processes is a very essential task to lower business impacts of badly tested software. At the same time, testing is a resource-consuming task in critical project phases.

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SAP Solution Manager Test Workbench

Leverage business knowledge from business process models for integration and regression testing of ERP solutions

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BPM-X offers an adaptive software solution for automatically transforming blueprint business process models from various modeling standards into test cases based on the BPMN™ modeling standard for a methodical, tool-based testing and test automation. The solution addresses the reduction of costs and risks as well as an improved quality of the implemented ERP software.

Efforts are reduced by automatically generated test cases. In this way the business know-how inherent in the process models is efficiently re-used. Probabilities assigned to process flows permit to prioritize the execution of the most relevant tests.

BPM-X integrates with testing tools like HP Quality Center or SAP® Solution Manager Test Workbench. Using such tools significantly speeds up the test handling as opposed to a manual approach, particularly when dealing with process change requests. Running tests of prioritized process flows with test automation tools like HP QuickTest or SAP® eCATT saves big amounts of time as well. This procedure is especially efficient when re-running tests for change requests or during ERP maintenance.

In summary, with MBT the overall efforts are greatly reduced for costly resources of the quality assurance (QA) team and business key-users.

Many business executives have concerns over the quality and resulting costs of the implementation and maintenance of ERP software. With the MBT approach, the business impact of insufficiently tested ERP software is eliminated. Through the re-use of business know-how provided in process models, assigned execution probabilities and the systematic execution of prioritized end-to-end test scenarios, the relevant status of business processes are reviewed. This includes the identification and explicit testing of technical interfaces for the process data exchange between the ERP system and external systems. By a methodical, tool-supported approach also other risks like inexperienced QA team members and short timeframes for testing can be lowered. In other words, MBT plays an important role in risk mitigation.

Re-using process models as a basis for test case generation can be considered as a best practice. The BPMN-based test cases created with BPM-X technology provide a visual documentation as well as an improved analytic understanding of end-to-end test and business scenarios. This makes it much easier to define appropriate test data.

Moreover, the integrated approach also addresses the impact of business requirement changes on test cases (which is typical in the ERP project cycle or maintenance). The changed test cases can be re-tested again to eliminate side effects of software changes.

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Volker Rautenberg
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