Micro Focus ALM Quality Center Review

It added structure to the test process and enabled the developers to better understand the QA process, though it should integrate with Agile Manager.

What is most valuable?

The overarching lifecycle view, from requirements gathering through to testing and defect resolution. Additionally the ability to customize the user permissions so they can only see and do what their job role permits.

How has it helped my organization?

It added structure to the test process and enabled the developers to better understand the QA process. This in turn led to an improvement in the code developed in-house.

What needs improvement?

As a standalone QA tool it meets the needs adequately, but it really needs combining with other solutions, such as Agile Manager, to get the best full lifecycle solution.

For how long have I used the solution?

Around 14 years from when it was originally called Test Director.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

There are still some issues when deploying to a few end user machines but the install and upgrade process is very easy. Some of these issues will be resolved in later releases.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Very stable with no reported issues in years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

There are options to increase the scale of use and extra modules that can be obtained with the full ALM license.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

On par with other big companies, sometimes you need to get past the front line support to get to the real answers.

Technical Support:

Good, quick turnaround with ideas and solutions to try.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

QA was driven by spreadsheets before the deployment of Test Director.

How was the initial setup?

The documentation is not always easy to follow but the answers can be found on the support forum and help desk.

What about the implementation team?

The initial deployment was with a vendor over 14 years ago, but all subsequent updates have been done in-house.

What was our ROI?

It's unknown, but I suspect it to be quite significant.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

More recently it was reevaluated against Microsoft Test Manager to see if it was still the best QA tool for our needs.

What other advice do I have?

It is still the best QA tool on the market that integrates with most of other tools we use. It allows everyone who wants to be able to see the current quality of the project and control the QA process.

Fully understand the different options out there and the license types. Other tools may offer similar and you will probably want to customize some of the options to get the best out of it. Have not tried the cloud option which would take away any implementation and upgrade issues.

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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ITCS user

author avatarPaul Grossman
Real User

As one who has installed, configured, customized, administrated, demoed and used ALM/Quality Center/Test Director I have to agree this review is spot on! ALM is customizable to a fault.

If you do experience stability issues in ALM, look first to any customizations you may have made in the code of the Workflow component. The weakest part of the product has been the Workflow Code Editor which is only slightly better than editing script in Notepad. I would recommend Test Design Studio as an alternate code editor from Patterson Consulting before making any changes to the Workflow code.

The other downside of ALM is the complexity of the mechanism used for version control and unattended execution of automated test scripts. In my case we opted for a Jenkins / SVN solution over ALM's functionality.

author avatarit_user326448 (Technical Test Analyst and Automation Engineer at Unum)
Real User

Agree with you on the Workflow - the editor could be a lot better but I guess they are trying to get most people to use the built in functionality and not push the limits of what it can do.