Test Data Management. Part 3: actors

There are roles in the test data management: IT-manager (CIO, team lead, project or product manager, etc), solution developer, QA engineer, test data developer, database or system administrator.
Let us discuss these roles in the process. Please refer to the test data management plan that described in the first part of this article.

The main mission of management in the process is a correct goal identification. As described in the first part the manager should:

  • Identify goals of the test data creation.
  • Analyze limitation of the data generation process.
  • Provide subordinates by clear policy for critical data protection.
  • Participate in data management plan making.

The solution developer should:

  • Describe test data properties.
  • Define how large data sets require for achieving the testing-related goals.

The quality assurance department staff should:

  • Take part in the test data properties definition.
  • Use created data in the testing procedures.
  • Drop the test arrays after the end of use.

Test data developer is a person who creates projects for test data generation software like DTM Data Generator or creates test data generation scripts or executable manually.
He or she should:

  • Analyze goals in the plan for attainability and integrity.
  • Analyze test data definitions.
  • Select the best tool for test data creation and management.
  • Create and run data generation scripts, projects or batch files.
  • Store generated or created results to defined by plan location.
  • Organize and manage data generation files and objects: scripts, libraries, value lists, project files, etc.
  DTM Data Generator: open test data generation project file

Also, we have to consider a case when test project developer is not a user who will run the test. In this case, the developer should pass prepared project files and scripts to another employee. Some test data generators offer special "runtime" licenses for this purpose. The runtime license allows the company to avoid purchasing full license of test data generation software.

The administrator of the database, server or information system should:

  • Take part in the goals identification and test management plan creation.
  • Provide security policy and protection for test data sets, arrays, and databases.
  • Use test data for hardware and system component trials.
  • Provide storage (physical storage, version control system, etc) for test data objects and backup/restore process, if necessary.

The next part of the article will describe test data generation, data set and projects storage strategies.