Testing PeopleSoft processes for PeopleSoft Update Manager (PUM) updates or major release upgrades is usually not high on a user’s list of likes. The entire process of developing a test plan is not exactly fun: assembling a team, creating and performing tests, fixing issues, re-testing, documenting, and finalizing the test process. Testing is a costly process; however, without effective testing, the “life-cycle” costs to any organization will be much greater. In fact, inadequate testing is a major reason why many projects fail. To help clients succeed with testing, Oracle provides a free tool: PeopleSoft Test Framework (PTF).
What is PeopleSoft Test Framework?
PTF is a great tool to run the same test repeatedly. It is easy to change variables to use the same test scenario with different test cases. For example, if I wanted to create an asset with different asset profiles, it is simply a matter of copying the test case and then changing the profile and re-running the scenario.
Since PTF is upgraded with PUM releases and major upgrades, PTF will automatically be adjusted for changes that have occurred in the PeopleSoft structure for delivered functionality. The biggest benefit is the ability to identify issues with customizations and other objects that are not part of the upgrade; PTF will identify functions where changes need to be made.
There are optimization tools that are built-in to PTF to adjust for changes in upgrades. These tools make PTF more efficient and make the whole user experience more rewarding.
Need more convincing? Here are some compelling reasons for using PTF.
Checking for failures
Most all of us have experienced the rigors of testing whenever there is a change to the system. With PeopleSoft, unless we test every scenario/test case, we run the risk of production failures. If we use PTF, we can do those tests during off hours or other “down” time and target possible production risks.
Running end-to-end tests
We need to create building blocks for end-to-end testing scenarios. For example, to test the process of creating an asset from accounts payable, we need to first create a voucher, run budget check, post, and send the voucher to asset management integration. Another example would be where workflow would be required such as multiple approvals for an expense report. The creation of the building blocks can be used right to the end of the entire business cycle including running queries
Performing regression tests for SIT and UAT
If the System Integration Test (SIT) or User Acceptance Test (UAT) is the basis for the PTF scripts, regression testing is quite easy. When a SIT or UAT test fails because of an issue with customizations or extensions, the test can be easily re-run after adjustments are made.
There is no better training for the user than developing the PTF scripts. Inexperienced users can review the scripts and watch them play somewhat like the record functionality in User Productivity Kit (UPK).
Investment to implement and use PTF
Of course, all good things come with a cost. The direct costs are the time to learn the product and create the scripts. The technical support costs are infrastructure, security, migration, and upgrades.
- Infrastructure – as of now, PTF can only be used on a PC (sorry, no MACs). Scripts can only be created using Internet Explorer; however, they can be run on other browsers (Microsoft Edge, Chrome, Firefox). The technical support team needs to verify that user infrastructure meets the requirements.
- Security – there are many setup options that need to be configured properly. These options are both in PeopleSoft and in the PeopleSoft Test Framework tool itself.
- Migration – once the scripts are created in a development environment, they will need to be migrated to test environments. PTF can create a project for migration.
- Upgrades – each upgrade includes changes that will affect delivered PTF functionality. These are documented in each PUM.
Lessons learned after creating hundreds of scripts:
- Avoid compound scripts. Single scripts can be joined together.
- Learn and use the delivered optimization tools.
- Run the ptf_ipv6_fix file located in C:\Program Files\Peoplesoft\Peoplesoft Test Framework\ directory as an administrator. Without doing this, scripts will run extremely slowly.
The call to action? Configure and use PeopleSoft Test Framework. Your testing process will become easier and much more powerful. This will lead to more successful projects… as well as a more satisfied team, company, and customers. You could almost say it will result in project happiness. It’s hard to find fault in happy!