In addition to monthly Costpoint Maintenance Releases (MRs), Deltek introduces new features in point releases every 9 to 12 months. Staying current not only ensures access to the latest features and functionality but supports the resolution of high-severity defects and provides needed regulatory updates.
Your organization can both “stay current” and have higher confidence in the new versions of Costpoint by developing a comprehensive testing strategy. This article lists several considerations in developing a testing strategy.
Building a comprehensive testing strategy for testing releases and upgrades
- Stay informed: Be sure you understand Deltek’s release strategy, including how and when maintenance releases and new versions of Costpoint are released and applied. Deltek often shares information through its official channels, including release notes, webinars and the Costpoint messaging feature for cloud clients. Be sure to review Deltek documentation to understand fixes, changes and new functionality.
- Evaluate each release: Is this release small or large? How much of your monthly processes does it touch? For MRs, you can prioritize critical business processes, modules for testing. Point releases often provide new functionality that requires more comprehensive testing. Identify any high-risk modules or processes that are affected by the new release.
- Consider reports, integrations, extensions and workflows (RICEW): Your reports, integrations, conversions, extensions and workflows may need to be tested depending on the release. Ensuring that these components function correctly minimizes the risk of business process disruptions, data inaccuracies, and issues affecting your broader enterprise solutions.
- Leverage a reusable test plan: Do you have a reusable test plan that covers core Costpoint functionality? Start with core test plan that covers all activities in a typical month. Developing such a plan can provide a standardized framework that you can adapt for multiple testing cycles. A reusable test plan promotes better test coverage, as it can be refined and improved based new features and lessons learned from previous test cycles.
- Build your testing team: Identifying your Costpoint subject-matter-experts — including functional and technical SMEs — will help your organization quickly ramp up for testing. Establish clear roles and responsibilities within the team, designating test leads, and RICEW SMEs as needed. Members of the team can be assigned to address portions of your test plan.
- Leverage an automated testing tool: Leveraging an automated testing tool brings efficiency by accelerating core testing tasks, improving test coverage, reducing human error, and providing automated reports for quick insights into test results. This allows your testing team to focus on the areas of your test plan that benefit from human interaction. Many of our clients use Baker Tilly's Costpoint testing accelerator for each test cycle, allowing them to rapidly test core functionality.
- Consider documentation and training updates: For larger releases, you may need to update documentation and provide training to users to ensure familiarity with new features and functionality. Major functionality or UI changes may require a larger change management focus, especially for Deltek time and expense. It’s critical to have needed documentation updated before go-live in the new version.
How Baker Tilly can help
Baker Tilly has helped Deltek clients stay current with Costpoint for over 20 years. Baker Tilly can lead your entire upgrade process, build custom testing strategies and test plans, and provide our Costpoint testing accelerator to automate core testing processes.