Given that SOA breaks up the traditional application into loosely coupled units of work and BPM ties these units together to execute a complex series of transactions, the way we test a BPM environment is totally different than testing a traditional application. First, we need to place bracers around the business assumptions held in the units of work. Meaning it is the job of the total development staff to be able to tell us if the business assumptions held within the unit of work are valid.
The level of test or regression validation will allow organizations to enter into a phase of change based testing. Change based testing focuses on validating business processes in the face of changing units of work. Furthermore, we need to shift the focus of QA from the traditional "testing" to more of an audit. QA should be auditing the business process much like the way a CPA firm audits the financial statements of an organization.
This was first published in July 2008