6 Reasons Why Teams Adopt TestRail as JIRA Test Management Add-on

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Every week many teams switch from the various available JIRA add-ons to TestRail, our fully-featured modern test management tool in combination with our own native JIRA test management add-on integration. And every week we get useful feedback from customers on why they made the switch. As we get questions about this topic almost every day, we wanted to collect this useful customer feedback and publish this article as a reference for existing and future TestRail customers, teams currently evaluating TestRail, and testers trying to convince their managers to make the switch as well.

Why are so many teams switching from pure JIRA add-ons to TestRail? Usually it’s a combination of limited functionality of pure JIRA add-ons, confusing (and sometimes misleading) pricing, the lack of important features a full test management provides that teams need to work more efficiently, TestRail’s many productivity features and its optimized testing user interface.

And last but not least (and for many teams this is pretty counter intuitive!), TestRail’s much deeper & richer JIRA integration compared to add-on-only tools. TestRail features full traceability between JIRA user stories, test cases, test results and bug reports. And at the end of the day, when it comes to actually getting work done, we often hear that teams lost a lot of time with add-on-only JIRA plugins as it takes a lot of time to manage tests, it’s difficult to organize test cases, you cannot easily start test runs against different platforms and many other basic features teams need.

So, many QA and testing teams are looking to migrate to a more powerful platform that comes with the same or better JIRA integration features. The customer feedback we collected below should help your team fully review and understand the options to make an informed decision so you can adopt the best possible combination and avoid some of the same mistakes.

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Reason #1: Full Test Management Capabilities

TestRail is the only fully featured test management tool supporting manual, exploratory and automated testing in a central place that comes with the same full native JIRA integration for both on-premise and cloud. Teams and testers usually spend a lot of time in a test management tool, and with TestRail’s many unique features, our highly productive interface (see below) and deep integrations, each tester usually saves many hours every week and can focus on effectively testing their projects with TestRail.

When reviewing different tools, the #1 reason teams choose TestRail is because of the increased productivity with TestRail’s comprehensive features and easy-to-use interface. Pure JIRA add-ons lack many very basic features teams need to work efficiently, and if you consider the amount of time testers spend in a testing tool, this adds up to many wasted hours and lost resources. Based on the feedback we receive every week, testers complain about the lack of even very basic features with pure JIRA add-ons that any serious testing team absolutely requires:

  • Organizing tests in sections and folders
  • Making it easy to reuse test cases across runs
  • Quickly starting test runs and assigning many cases to testers
  • Starting tests against different platforms and configurations
  • Comparing test results of different test runs side-by-side
  • Easily integrating automated and exploratory testing
  • Tracking testing progress based on time and forecasts

These are just some of the very basic features teams need to work efficiently. If you cannot group and organize your test cases in folders, or change the order of your tests within sections, a testing team cannot effectively manage test cases and work efficiently. Having a flat list of issues is perfect for issue and task management, but it’s impossible to manage larger test efforts without such a structure effectively. Likewise, important features such as testing against different platforms or rich reporting are critical to manage software tests.

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Easily organize tests, record results and keep track of your testing progress with TestRail

Reason #2: Unique & Deep JIRA Testing Integration

Now, one typical reason we hear why teams originally started to use a pure JIRA add-on is that it’s “directly integrated with JIRA”. Usually pure JIRA test management add-ons mainly use JIRA issues with a custom issue type and some custom testing fields, which isn’t a great fit because this lacks the important differentiation between test design (cases/sessions) and execution (test runs/results). The main issues many team identify after some time: while test cases are indeed managed in JIRA, the workflow isn’t actually well integrated with the rest of JIRA.

With TestRail’s integration approach, you have full traceability between user stories/requirements in JIRA, test cases & results in TestRail, and JIRA bug reports & issues. TestRail has a full native 2-way integration with JIRA. This means that you can easily:

  • Link test cases to JIRA user stories and requirements
  • Link test results to bug reports and issues in JIRA
  • Push and create new bug reports directly during testing with 1 click
  • Look up all related JIRA issue details directly from your tests
  • View TestRail reports and linked test results inside JIRA from issue pages

TestRail’s combination of full push/lookup integration inside TestRail, as well as our native JIRA add-ons for JIRA Server and JIRA Cloud, means that you can fully focus on testing as well as keeping track of your project’s progress. Specifically, there’s no need to change your existing JIRA workflow with TestRail. Everything continues working as-is, you just add TestRail to the mix and there’s no need to synchronize any defects, there’s no need to use any new issue types and there’s no need for any custom fields.

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Accessing linked test results, test cases and related details directly in JIRA

Reason #3: Unmatched Productivity with Rich Testing UI

Testing teams spend an enormous amount of time in a test management tool. Often times testers spend anything between 4-8 hours every day testing applications, reviewing test sessions and test cases, adding test results, managing test runs, tracking automated tests and reviewing reports and bug reports. With this in mind, we designed everything in TestRail to be as productive as possible, requiring as few clicks as possible, reducing page load times, optimizing every page refresh and getting the right information on the screen at the right time.

Over the last 12 months alone we invested a huge amount of time to redesign TestRail’s entire user interface to make testers even more productive. The result is our unique FastTrack interface to quickly go through tests, add results and manage your runs. We also added fast keyboard shortcuts, full drag&drop support as well as unique image pasting and screenshot integration, and much more. Just saving a few hours per tester per year will more than pay for TestRail, and teams usually spend a lot of time in and get a lot of value out of the product. Don’t settle for less! Check out the FastTrack productivity video below:

 

Reason #4: Transparent & Fair Pricing (Only Pay for TestRail Users!)

Pricing can often be confusing and comparing prices can be difficult, especially as many companies don’t list their prices publicly (which usually means they aren’t very competitively priced). Many companies also charge extra for specific features via additional add-ons, have different editions for different user roles or force you to buy licenses for all JIRA users who don’t actually need access to test management information.

With TestRail, we decided to offer a single affordable, fair and transparent price with high multi-user discounts to make it easy for teams of all sizes to adopt TestRail. You can find our transparent pricing for both TestRail Cloud and TestRail Server on our website:

If you compare TestRail’s pricing to other full test management tools, you will find that they charge 2x – 5x our price (unfortunately you need to get in touch with sales reps at most other full test management tool vendors, as they hide their pricing on their websites). The main reason we can offer TestRail for a much better price is that we work with many more customers compared to many of our competitors, and we don’t have an expensive sales team. When comparing full test management tool pricing with basic pure JIRA add-on tools, make sure to consider the following important differences:

  • Many JIRA add-ons require you to buy licenses for all your JIRA users, even if they don’t need access to test management. This means that you always need to purchase licenses for everyone with JIRA access. With TestRail you only pay for users who actually need to have access to TestRail or want to see the linked details in JIRA.
  • Do you want to use reporting? Do you use test automation? Do you want to add additional integrations? With many add-ons, vendors require you to buy more add-ons for specific features. This is something many teams don’t realize before they need more features. And again, you need to buy these add-ons for all your users, even if only a few team members need them. With TestRail, all features are included with our single transparent price.
  • If you consider the big productivity differences, and the high monthly costs of testers & engineers (often $5,000-$10,000+/employee/month for most organizations) & TestRail’s very low price ($10-25/tester/month), and the amount of time testers spend in a test management tool, TestRail helps you save a lot of time and resources every week. We highly recommend comparing the tools for productivity as this can make a huge difference very quickly.
pricing
Pricing for TestRail Cloud and TestRail Server

Reason #5: Manual, Exploratory & Automated Testing

Software projects get more and more complex and often involve many different disciplines including design, architecture, implementation and DevOps/operations. Likewise, testing and quality assurance gets more challenging and testing teams often need to consider various aspects such as functional testing, usability tests, load testing, reviewing and advising on hosting architectures, coordinating mobile testing on various platforms, implementing automated tests and quickly assessing new releases for continuous integration.

Testing teams need tools and a platform to help manage all this and more, and TestRail makes it easy to mix manual, automated and exploratory testing in a single tool. Even if you aren’t using automated testing at the moment, or you are mainly managing manual test cases right now: it’s likely that you will need to adopt more testing approaches in the future and you should make sure your future test management tool supports this. TestRail is the only test managing tool that fully supports all testing methodologies with test templates and rich APIs that comes with a native JIRA integration for all editions:

  • Manual Testing with TestRail

    Manual testing and managing test cases, starting test runs, assigning tests to team members, coordinating tests across platforms and recording test results is one of TestRail’s core features and capabilities. We specifically designed TestRail’s interface to be as productive as possible for manual testing, so testers spend less time working with the tool and have more time to focus on testing. Please review our many productivity features that make TestRail the most productive tool for manual software testing.

  • Automated Testing with TestRail

    TestRail comes with rich APIs to easily implement and integrate basically any test automation tool. This includes standard web testing tools like Selenium, JUnit & many other unit testing tools, countless commercial and mobile testing tools, CI tools like Jenkins and more. Almost all of our customers integrate their test automation efforts with TestRail at some point, so we have various use cases and links to additional blog postings on test automation.

  • Exploratory Testing with TestRail

    TestRail includes modern features to manage exploratory testing as well as session-based test management. In addition to traditional test planning and manual testing, and in addition to test automation efforts, many teams use exploratory testing to quickly verify new functionality. Exploratory testing is an approach that enables test design and test execution at the same time. TestRail’s built-in exploratory session templates and fast commenting & result support makes this fast and efficient.

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Default exploratory testing session template introduced in TestRail 5.2

Reason #6: Mix & Match: TestRail and JIRA Cloud & Server

TestRail is the only full test management tool offering the same level of native add-on integration with both JIRA Server and JIRA Cloud. Many add-ons either only support JIRA Server (making it impossible for you to switch to JIRA Cloud if you want to do this in the future), or they offer two different editions that are incompatible with each other and don’t support the same features. Pure JIRA Cloud test management add-ons are also usually even more limited compared to their server editions. TestRail on the other hand offers the same level of integration for all JIRA editions and our unique integration approach was even featured on the Atlassian & JIRA development blog:

“If you are building a new tool or integration for JIRA, you ideally want to target both server and cloud customers to reach as many users as possible. So when we designed and planned our all-new JIRA test management integration for TestRail 5.0, one of our design goals was therefor to offer the same rich integration options to JIRA Cloud and Server customers.”

When choosing a test management tool for JIRA, make sure to consider the compatibility with future JIRA versions and editions. TestRail uses a combination of Atlassian’s server plugin architecture, as well as the new Atlassian Connect cloud integration platform. This means TestRail is using the best possible combination for a future-proof JIRA integration. Some important points to keep in mind when making a decision:

  • Choose a tool that allows you to freely switch between server and cloud editions
  • Make sure the tool is using the latest integration features (Atlassian Connect!) so you can still use it when/if older APIs are deprecated
  • Many pure JIRA add-ons are only available for the server edition, making it impossible to switch to the cloud in the future
  • Even add-ons that offer cloud editions usually have two completely different, incompatible products for each edition, and the cloud edition is usually even more limited
  • With TestRail you get the same rich JIRA integration with native add-ons for both JIRA Server and JIRA Cloud, using the latest & recommended future-proof APIs

jira-integration

Getting Started with TestRail and JIRA Test Management

If you are using JIRA and are looking for a new test management tool, we would highly recommend reviewing the above customer feedback we regularly receive. We have seen so many teams starting with a specific tool and then regretting their decision shortly afterwards as they learn about the many limitations. And it’s a good idea to review the differences and advantages of tools to make an informed decision. Trying TestRail and configuring the JIRA integration only takes a few easy steps, especially if you start with our cloud trial. Here are additional resources and steps to get started:

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