How to Prepare Test Plan and Write Test Cases for ERP Application – ERP Testing Part-2

In the previous article, we have seen few key points of ERP like the real meaning of the term ERP, various modules of ERP, the importance of ERP testing, the criticalities of ERP testing and a road-map for the preparation of the ERP testing.

=> Check ERP testing part 1 tutorial here.

In this article, let’s get into more practical details on ERP (SAP) Testing like preparing the quality assurance plan, test plan, test suite, test cases and test execution strategy.

This tutorial is a good example for writing test plan from scratch for any application. We have also provided sample test suite template for download.

For the demonstration purpose, let us assume the ERP application under testing consists of the following modules with some key information about the implementation plan as below.

ERP Name: ABC Manufacturing ERP

Customer Name: XYZ Petrochemicals LLC

Industry Verticals: Manufacturing

Corporate Office: New York

Branch Offices: Los Angeles and Chicago

Production Plant: Houston

Inventory Warehouses: Houston, Los Angeles, and Chicago

Total Employees: 2500

System Users: 325

Company Turnover: USD 1M

Departments: Administration, Finance, Accounts, HR, Production, Quality, Stores, Sales, Marketing, Maintenance, Dispatch, Customer Support

Modules: Budget, CRM, Customer, Vendor, Sales, Purchase, Payments, Contracts, Finance, Accounts, Human Capital, Payroll, Production Planning, Project Management, Inventory, Material Management, Work Orders, Fixed Asset, Business Intelligence

Delivery Model: On-Premise and Cloud

Implementation Plan: Requirements Gathering, Business Workflow Analysis, Data Flow Assessment, Customization and Enhancement, Delivery and Rollout, End User Training

Find below some of the screenshots of the ERP software application for some important business process like Sales Order, Customer Financials, Payments Header, Fixed Asset, Employee Management and Sales Report which will give an idea about the criticality and complexity of the ERP testing.

(Note: Click on any image for enlarged view)

Screenshot 1: Sales Order

Screenshot 2: Sales Order (US)

Screenshot 3: Customer Financials

Screenshot 4: Payments Header (India)

Screenshot 5: Payments Header (US)

Screenshot 6: Fixed Asset (India)

Screenshot 7: Fixed Asset (US)

Screenshot 8: Employee Management

Screenshot 9: Sales Report

What You Will Learn:

ERP QA Plan

Assuring Quality is a major milestone of any ERP implementation project, which consists of the following stakeholders and success depends on dedicated efforts by all as a “Team”.

The stakeholders of ERP implementation project might be:

As we discussed in the previous tutorial, testing the ERP (e.g SAP) software application is different than testing the other software applications. ERP applications are domain specific and industry-specific. The common modules like Finance, Accounting, Inventory, Fixed Asset, Sales, Purchase, Human Capital, and Payroll are available in all the ERP systems.

Apart from these common modules, few industrial specific modules are available as per the targeted customers. For example, a “manufacturing ERP” may have a “production planning” module, a “pharma ERP” may have a “doctor-patient” module and an “education ERP” may have a “student” module and so on.

So, the quality factor should be enabled with some pre-defined metrics to be shared well in advance with all the stakeholders in the above list.

To maintain the quality, stakeholders are mutually got into service level agreements. All the stakeholders as a team should have the defined action items, responsibilities with the target dates to achieve the expected quality of statement of work.

ERP Test Plan

ERP test plan should consist of the following information for an effective and successful implementation.

The test plan has the objectives, quality metrics, features to be tested manually, features to be tested through automation tools, project environment, team infrastructure, resource requirements, testing schedule, testing deliverables, test execution infrastructure, testing framework, assumptions, dependencies, constraints, bug tracking mechanism, bug reporting tools and acceptance criteria etc.,

Below is the sample test plan for our ERP implementation project for XYZ Petrochemical LLC.

See also – if you need more information on how to write test plan please check these tutorials:

Project Description

ABC Manufacturing ERP is an integrated ERP solution for the manufacturing industry. The product consists of the core modules like Accounting, Finance, Budget, Inventory, Fixed Asset, Customers, Vendors, CRM, Sales, Purchase, Payments, Contracts, Human Capital, Payroll, Production Planning, Project Management, Inventory, Material Management, Work Orders and Business Intelligence.



The customer’s vertical is into manufacturing and their business is manufacturing petrochemical bi-products and selling them to the domestic and international clients. The raw materials are purchased from domestic and international markets. The company operates from New York, the USA with branches in various parts of the Country.

The company also have warehouses at remote locations. The ERP system will be implemented in a centralized location at the corporate premises and connect the other branches, warehouses, production plants, marketing offices from various parts of the Country through Internet, WAN, Wi-Fi, Cloud Infrastructure. The proposed solution supports multiple languages like English (for International customers, Hindi (for IN users), Arabic (for Middle East vendors) and supports multiple currency transactions.

The system also has an E-Commerce customer portal for online sales orders with credit card payment gateway and a Vendor portal for purchase quotations. There are more than 300 system users going to use the system from various parts of the globe with at least more than 10,000 transactions per day.

Objective

Module wise Features for Manual Testing

Module wise Features for Automation Testing

Features to be Tested Off Premises

Features to be Tested On Premises

Features to be Tested on Mobile, Wi-Fi & Cloud

Functionality Testing: All the system test cases of the CRM module, which are reviewed and approved.

Resource Requirements

Testing Schedule

Sl.No.Task DetailsStart DateEnd DateTester
1Preparing Test Plan04/05/201506/05/2015Tester A
2Review and Update Test Plan07/05/201507/05/2015Test Lead B
3Preparing Test Suite & Test Cases
Module 1: Sales & Distribution16/05/201504/06/2015
4Sales Order Process16/05/201520/05/2015Tester B
5Sales Contract Process21/05/201526/05/2015Tester B
6Return Merchandise Authorization27/05/201501/06/2015Tester B
7Payment Receipts Process02/06/201504/06/2015Tester B
Module 2: Purchase & Payments
8Purchase Indent Process16/05/201519/05/2015Tester C
9Purchase Quotation Process20/05/201523/05/2015Tester C
10Purchase Order Process24/05/201528/05/2015Tester C
11Payment Approval Process29/05/201531/05/2015Tester C
Test Execution
12Module 1: Iteration 101/06/201505/06/2015Tester B
13Module 2: Iteration 101/06/201504/06/2015Tester C
14Regression Testing: Module 1
15Regression Testing: Module 2
16Test Reports & QA Plan Updates

Test Case Execution

Test Coverage

A: Functional Testing, B: System Testing, C: Integrity Testing, D: Security Testing, E: Usability Testing, F: Performance Testing, G: Interface Testing, H: Installation Testing

Deliverables

Risk Management

Issue Tracker

Confluence and JIRA tools are used for issue tracking in the project. Also, JIRA is customized and configured for all the testing team members to escalate issue and report bugs and assigned to the concern development team with the responsibility and target dates.

Quality Metrics

ERP Test Suite

Like the normal testing process, ERP Test Suite is normally prepared as an Excel document. This document controls the complete revision history of the various test suites of all the modules in ERP application. The test cases of each module, test execution history, list of bugs and the test report history are maintained in an ERP test suite.

For automation testing, the “test scripts” are maintained in the test suite and the related iteration of test execution history is maintained. Depends on the type of testing and the complexity of the test cases, automation test scripts are maintained in the suite which should be designed in such a way for re-usability.

Find below the snapshot of an ERP test suite in excel document.

Sample Test Suite Template Download:

Below is sample test suite template for download. It contains templates for revision history, test report, bug report, smoke test cases, regression test cases

=> Click here to Download ERP test suite template.

ERP Test Cases

Apart from the functional test cases, regression test cases, sanity/smoke test cases, ERP Testing requires other type of test cases for installation testing, configuration testing, implementation testing, adaptability testing, network testing, server testing, offline testing, remote testing, multi-currency testing, multi-language testing, device testing, intranet testing, real-time testing etc.,

Most important, ERP being a centralized automated solution, being accessed by multiple users concurrently online in real time, which involves a financial transaction, each and every test cases should be written with a lot of dedicated effort and real-time data.

Also, the test execution status should be updated as “Pass” after verifying the output data with the predefined real-time data. So, the test cases should always have a column for “test data” and “output data”.

Sample Test Scenario:

Find below a sample test case for our ERP demonstration This test cases may consist of a lot of small test cases which can segregate and maintained, but for demo purpose, it’s combined with a single test case.

Test Case IDABC_ERP_SD_X0121
ModuleSales & Distribution
FeatureSales Order Process
ObjectiveTo check the sales order is booked and invoiced with proper data entered for sales header and sales details.
Steps to Reproduce1. Sales & Distribution -> Order Management -> Sales Order List -> New Sales Order.

2. Select Order Date, Select Order Type, Select the Expiry Date, Select Customer ID, Select Shipping ID, Select Warehouse ID, Select Shipping Date, Select Payment Due Date, Select Sales Tax ID, Select Salesman ID.

3. Select New Sales Items and Select Item ID, Select Item UOM, Enter Item Qty, Enter Item Price, Select Ledger Account, Select Project ID and Click OK.

4. Click Book Order button in the main screen.
Input Data

(Positive)
Order Date (01/01/2015), Order Type (Sales Order), Expiry Date (31/09/2015), Customer ID (SABIC), Shipping ID (FedEx), Warehouse ID (NaviMumbaiWH), Shipping Date (03/02/2015), Select Payment Due Date (28/02/2015), Sales Tax ID (ST929), Salesman ID (Anand), Item ID (PolyPropylene), Item UOM (Kilograms), Item Qty (1000), Ledger Account (23499949), Project ID (DueTarget2015)
Input Data

(Negative)
Order Date (01/01/2016), Order Type (Purchase Order), Expiry Date (31/09/2012), Customer ID (DEFAULT), Shipping ID (Blank), Warehouse ID (Blank), Shipping Date (03/02/2013), Select Payment Due Date (28/02/2012), Sales Tax ID (Blank), Salesman ID (DEFAULT), Item ID (DEFAULT), Item UOM (Blank), Item Qty (0), Ledger Account (DEFAULT), Project ID (DEFAULT)
Expected Results

(Positive)
1. Order should be booked and invoiced.

2. Picking Packing slip should be generated.

3. Shipping Order should be generated.

4. General Ledger transactions should be posted.

5. Inventory Ledger should be updated.

6. Debit Memo should be generated.

7. Email should be sent to the Customer and Stores.
Expected Results

(Negative)
• Alert box should be coming for each negative data input as per the alert process and the defined text.

• Sales order should be backordered, if the items are out of stock.

• Sales order should be on hold, if the customer credit limit is low.
Actual Result
Expected OutputSales Order, Sales Invoice, Packing List, Shipping List should be generated in the predefined report format.
Actual Output

Conclusion

ERP Testing is having a lot of risks and complexities compared to any software/product testing. Also, managing the quality metrics in ERP implementation projects requires a lot of attention and dedicated efforts as a “team” from the multiple stakeholders.

Testing professionals need to understand the difference between the quality of the product and the quality of implementation. ERP testing requires trusted sponsorship on time and budget from the management and the customers. Testing should be done by the ERP expert team and should not be allocated to an inexperienced team for any reason.

It is very important to use the universally proven right process, methodologies, approaches, and automated tools. We should not assume that “automation” completely replaces the “manual” testing, but should not compromise on using the required testing infrastructure and framework. Don’t underestimate the time required for collecting live real data from the customers.

For Testing Professionals, this journey is “Excellent Resource for ERP Product Testing!”.

Let us know if you have any questions on ERP or in particular SAP Testing.