Tasks of a Test Manager and Tester

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The test team performs different activities and tasks depending on the project, product context, skillset, and organization.

In large projects or organizations, you will find different team structures where several small teams are headed by the Test Leader and then report to the test manager, Test Coach, or Test Coordinator. 

The agile team has a different structure where Testers are involved as individual contributors responsible for manual or automation tests for assigned stories. They have a separate test role outside the agile team or report to the test coach, mentor, or manager.

Let's discuss the major tasks by dividing the team into two categories: Test Manager and Tester. 

Test Manager Tasks

In the test team, the test manager is overall responsible for the test process and successful leadership of the test activities. Different Managers can perform the role of a Test Manager, including QA Manager, Project Manager, Development Manager, and professional Test Manager. 

Typical Test Manager Task includes:

  1. Developer and Review Test Documents: The Test Manager writes, updates, and reviews the Test Strategy, Test Policy, and Test Plan. The test Manager further coordinates Test Strategy and plan with the Project Manager, Product Owner, and other stakeholders.
  2. Plan Test Activities, Tasks, and Resources: Test Manager Plan and Monitor Test activities and Tasks considering the Test Objective and Risks. The manager is responsible for selecting a test approach and defining tests, test cycles, planning defect management, estimating time and cost, and acquiring the right resources also come under his tasks. They also decide what should be automated to what degree and how.
  3. Initiate, Monitor, and Control Test Activities: The test Manager initiates the analysis, design, implementation, and execution of tests. They also monitor test progress and results and check the status of exit criteria or definition of done and facilitate test completion activities.
  4. Prepare and Deliver Test Reports: The test Manager introduces suitable metrics for measuring test progress and evaluating the quality of the testing and the product. They prepare and deliver test progress reports and summary reports based on the information gathered from the team and test execution results. Also, based on Test results, documents and progress, they adapt planning and take any actions necessary for test control.
  5. Environment, System, and Tools Selection: The test Manager decides about the Test Environment's implementation and makes sure the environment is in place before test execution. They also support setting up the defect management and configuration management system. Selecting and Implementing the suitable test tool is the responsibility of the Test Manager.
  6. Test Team Development: The Test Manager is accountable for testers' skills and career development through on-time training and promotion. They coach Testers, resolve their conflicts within the team, and ensure that everybody is aligned to project goals.

Tasks of Tester

Tester tasks include:

  1. Contribute to Test Plan: Tester also reviews and writes test plans and submits plan documents for final review to the Test Manager.
  2. Requirement Understanding: Tester Analyze, review and assess user requirements, stories, specifications, and acceptance criteria.
  3. Test Environment and Data: The tester Prepares and Acquire Test Data and makes sure the environment is stable and ready with Test Data.
  4. Test Case Design & Execution: Testers create test cases and procedures and execute them in a test environment. They also create detailed test execution schedules. 
  5. Defect Reporting: The tester evaluates the results, documents deviations from expected results, and reports defects found during testing.
  6. Tools Understanding & Usage: Tester Use the Bug Tracking, Test case management tool, and other project required tools.
  7. Test Automation: Tester Automate Test Cases and analyze and share the automation results.
  8. Test Case review: Tester review manual or automated test cases written by team members.

Additional people may take over the tester's role at different test levels. For example, the developer takes at the component testing level, Business Analysts at the acceptance test level, subject matter experts at the system level, and the operations team at the operations level.