Steps for Successful User Acceptance Testing

February 13, 2018

Written by Chris Henien

User Acceptance Testing (UAT) is a critical point in every implementation. As a client, this is your chance to verify that the software is operating as designed, confirm that there are no bugs within the system, and identify any gaps between the requirements and desired functionality. At HRchitect, it is our goal to guide you through a successful implementation and that includes UAT. Having led clients in many industries through hundreds of implementations, we’ve discovered the top four most important things to consider as you enter this phase of the project.


  1. Create great test cases: While “great test cases” may be a relative term, there are many criteria that your test cases should include to truly be considered “great.” Test cases should align with every requirement listed out in the requirements document. Along those lines, you should have positive and negative test cases. This means that you should be testing that certain functionality such as overtime rules or PTO accruals function when they are supposed to, but also do not function when they are not supposed to. With each test case, you should also have a desired result so that any tester can perform the test and understand exactly what they should be seeing. By creating tests around all the requirements, performing positive and negative testing, and including desired results for each test, you will have covered a lot of ground in completing a successful round of UAT.


  1. Representation from multiple departments/levels: Now that you have test cases completed, it’s time to think about your testing team. Once you’ve gone live with your system, you will have many different groups using the system. It’s likely that each of these groups requires very different functionality from one another. Payroll will need to have payroll processing functionality. Managers will need access to their employees, and employees will need to be able to view their own information. With that said, it only makes sense to have a variety of end users assisting with the testing process. By including testers from multiple departments and levels, you’ll have test cases completed by real users and understand any real pain points faced by those users.


  1. Designated project leader: While it’s necessary for the project to have many different people included in testing to get the most thorough test results, it is just as important to have a designated project leader who fields any issues that come through before submitting them to the HRchitect team for changes. This project leader will be able to spot any duplicate issues submitted by the team, determine if more information is needed from the tester, verify that the test case truly failed or if there was confusion within the test case itself, and spot check whether the failed test results align with the requirements document. Assigning one person to own this process is a much more efficient solution. In fact, you’ll probably save the testing team and the consulting team a large number of hours that can be allocated to another stage of your project, for example, to resolve any issues/questions after go-live.


  1. Proper resource allocation: Now that you’ve created a list of test cases, users are ready to jump into the system, and you’ve designated a project leader to own the UAT process. The only thing that’s left is to make sure this team has the time to complete the tasks ahead of them. User Acceptance Testing is an involved process on the client side lasting anywhere from 2-6 weeks, depending on the project and statement of work. Your team is going through a large requirements document and making sure that every single aspect has been configured, as well as determining if any additional work needs to be done. You’ll also be re-testing failed test cases and providing additional information on issues when requested. Proper allocation of time for your team is key to completing UAT within the timeframe allotted in the project.


User Acceptance Testing is one of the most important phases in any implementation. By creating thorough test cases, assigning the right testing team, designating one person to own the process, and managing time efficiently, you will be in a great position to complete a successful round of User Acceptance Testing.


At HRchitect, we have helped numerous clients with evaluating, selecting, and implementing HCM technology. HRchitect can assist you with all your implementation and testing needs to make sure that you have a smooth transition to your new system, your services are not disrupted, and to help you get the most from your investment.


About Chris Henien, MBA, PMP






Chris joined the HRchitect team in 2016 as a Senior Consultant. With 5 years of experience in software consulting, Chris specializes in Workforce Management implementations. He currently works most closely with companies implementing a WorkForce Software solution as a Technical Delivery Manager.