HP ALM - Excellent tool for managing Waterfall Projects

Overall Satisfaction with HP Application Lifecycle Management

HP ALM is project management tool with strongest test management capabilities.

We are using this tool for managing projects working with waterfall methodology, HP ALM is sued to store requirements, estimates, test scenario creation, management, execution, reporting & tracking project status. Its rich reports & dashboard help in keeping the transparency & helps higher management in taking decisions.

For agile teams where JIRA is being used, we also use HP ALM for test management. The model is requirements, tasking and tracking in JIRA while test cases, creation, execution, snapshot capturing in HP ALM. Definitely trace-ability is an issue with this kind of model where two tools are used & add up to some waste. It is used at program level.
  • If you have a mix of automation & manual test suites, HPALM is the best tool to manage that. It definitely integrates very well with HP automation tools like HP Unified Functional Testing and HP LoadRunner. Automated Suites can be executed, reports can be maintained automatically. It also classifies which test suites are manual & which are automated & managers can see the progress happening in moving from manual to automated suites. In HPA ALM all the functional test suites, performance test suites, security suites can be defined, managed & tracked in one place.
  • It is a wonderful tool for test management. Whether you want to create test cases, or import it, from execution to snapshot capturing, it supports all activities very well. The linking of defects to test runs is excellent. Any changes in mandatory fields or status of the defect triggers an e-mail and sent automatically to the user that the defect is assigned to.
  • It also supports devops implementation by interacting with development tool sets such as Jenkins & GIT. It also bring in team collaboration by supporting collaboration tools like Slack and Hubot.
  • This tool can integrate to any environment, any source control management tool bringing in changes and creates that trace-ability and links between source control changes to requirements to tests across the sdlc life-cycle.
  • It is a very costly tool so unless you wanna use most of its features don't go for it & alos if you want it to manage agile teams , I will recommend tools like JIRA, Rally, Active Collab & AgileCraft since these tools understand agile principles & scrum practices better than HP ALM.
  • It has a very rich UI interface & is indeed a very simple tool but few minor issues like not opening another window , not allowing copy paste repetitive Dev-QA tasks makes things difficult for users.
  • Though with new version Octane they try to incorporate new features & integrations supporting agile principles & practices but still many things are missing making it excellent tool for waterfall projects but not for handling agile teams.
  • You can not run scrum meetings with distributed teams like you can do in AgileCraft. Also support for retrospectives is not up to the mark.
  • It is highly dependent on internet explorer.Support for other browsers like chrome and Firefox is not there.
  • We are able to maintain trace-ability effectively using this tool which helps us in improving quality while keeping low the cost of quality. Requirements, Test Plan and Test Lab are most used modules by our teams.
  • We are able to maintain our test suites very well which is mix of manual + automation.
  • Since automated scripts are created in HP UFT , it lead to easy maintenance of automated scripts, suites & test results.
  • With its integration with Jenkins , helping us in achieving Continuous integration which ultimately helps us in reducing time to market.
  • Since most of the team members are novice, extensive documentation and tutorials of HP ALM helps in reducing the learning curve. Team members were able to learn this tool while working & no separate training was provided.
We require a project management tool for waterfall projects with very heavy testing cycles (4-5 regression cycles), definitely no other tool in the market provides the level of support for test management that HP ALM provides.

On the top of that, testing scope was huge, it covers functional, security & performance testing & we want to track all the suites under one roof which was only feasible in HP ALM. Also we were planning to automate using HP UFT which also integrates well with HP ALM.

HP ALM is well suited for waterfall projects specifically if the teams are novice. It provides excellent support for project planning, tracking & test management. Top leadership can efficiently track, measure and report on project milestones & key performance indicators. Development teams have access to a wide variety of tools to automate their development, testing, bug tracking, and reporting tasks in one place. Its extensive documentation and tutorials help new users to learn this tool pretty fast. Though for agile teams HP ALM Octane can be explored but its not value for money & did not handle distributed teams well.

Evaluating HP Application Lifecycle Managment and Competitors

  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Prior Experience with the Product
  • Analyst Reports
The QA manager likes the testing workflow of ALM & the rich features covering end to end flow of qa cycle which is the primary reason for selection of HP ALM.
If the project is running in waterfall & QA needs to have exhaustive workflow , go for this else stay away.