Managing testing is very important and knowing what has been done and what remains to be done are key. Also, historical review can indicate how the testing practices are affecting the quality of testing and development in general by producing metrics that can indicate any decline or improvement.
A good test management tool can be used by a number of different resources with different access levels, such that benefical workflow can be introduced.
Having tried a number of different tools, we find that HP Application Lifecycle Management(ALM) covers off everything that is required.
HP Application Lifecycle Management (ALM)
At its simplest, HP ALM is a tool for managing the requirements, testing effort and for managing defects.
Multiple projects can be set up.
It encompasses a Dashboard, Releases, Cycles, Libraries, Requirements, Tests and their associated Test Steps, the Test Lab from where tests are run, the Run History and Defect management.
It has the ability to handle Business Process Testing and can automatically create Requirements from an xml file output from a product such as ARIS.
However, it can do far more, for example it can dictate specific actions by role, it can hide certain fields and abilities from certain roles and it can create advanced reporting using Open Test Architecture (OTA). Templates can be used to good effect to standardize the testing process, as can the inbuilt Workflow.
There is a Test Lab component, where tests (manual, automated or performance) can be managed, allowing tests to be run on specific hosts/servers based on a calendar/time structure.
Being an HP product, it works seamlessly with both UFT for automation testing and Loadrunner for performance testing.