Our team is responsible for web application testing. We’ve recently faced a question of providing the most common (and what is more important, the most convenient and handy) format of displaying data in a detailed test report: pdf, email, html, excel, word, etc.

We would appreciate your sharing your experience and practice of representing detailed test results.

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    Who reads this report? What will they do with this report? What do they need to see? All communications need to be created with the recipient in mind. – Joe Strazzere Sep 4 '13 at 12:21
  • You are right. We now mainly decided on its content. First we try to emphasize the cause of a test failure and show its location. – Anna Sep 4 '13 at 12:46
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    I think you are missing the point. If the report recipient needs to manipulate the data you send them in the report, .pdf format might be less useful than .xls (for example). The use case drives the format you should use. – Joe Strazzere Sep 4 '13 at 12:49
  • A related question from the sidebar yielded an interesting link about testing dashboards that seems relevant, especially if your audience may not know what they want. It describes a general purpose approach that may give you some ideas to build on. – Lucas Schwarz Sep 4 '13 at 18:01

Since you seem to imply that you already know what data you are going to report on, why not have data populated real time and accessible via the intranet?

At MS all test results are available to everyone on the project team via the intranet. Test data is usually consumed across the organization differently, especially in large organizations. So, people can either get a high level view, or do a deep dive into key areas. Additionally, in some groups we have TV monitors in halls displaying dashboards of high level test data and project status.

Some teams also have weekly project mail summarizing overall status; including high level test status and "red flags."

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  • Sure. We already provide test results in real time. We just thought that sometimes it might be useful to have test results not only in real time, but also published in another format. – Anna Sep 5 '13 at 10:53

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