We are an agile software development boutique. We use Kanban to keep our project running. We do Test Driven development, so don't have a separate testing phase. But we do some manual testing called Exploratory testing. So I wanted to know if other teams follow the same or they have a specific time and phase for exploratory testing?
Without talking to you directly I don't know what exactly what you mean when you say "exploratory testing". When I say exploratory testing I mean:
an approach to software testing that can be described as simultaneous learning, test design and test execution. Exploratory testing is contrasted with scripted testing but they are both part of the same spectrum.
(The community of testers I belong to also follow a definition very similar to this.)
Also I like this diagram by James Bach. It helps visualize the exploratory vs. scripted testing spectrum a little bit:
So to answer your question, as long as you learn throughout the project and constantly create new tests that are more powerful than the old ones, then you are doing exploratory testing and it doesn't matter what specific time or phase you commit to it. It's possible to do exploratory testing in any phase, even while writing tests for TDD. What matters is that you are providing value with your testing.
From my experience, exploratory testing is good to do to understand the application very well. But it does not guarantee the full test pass as we won't track of the test results here. Have a functional testing to cover the high priority scenarios then go to Exploratory testing. High level planning is better than zero planning.
Well in our company we follow cmmi level 3 processes.
Exploratory is done after complete functional testing which consist of negative and positive testing.
When we receive a build of any web based or mobile based application we generally use this process:
Smoke testing of the build :- Which consist a short positive flow of application.
Functional testing:- Which consist of all negative and positive testing using test cases.
Exploratory testing:- This type of testing is done for extra scenarios which occurs to a tester during functional testing, it may be done out of scope of requirement to check how application is behaving, but before it a functional testing is needed to run all positive and negative test cases on build.