Collaborative ALM Artifact Linking

Teams collaborate by sharing information. What one team member creates another consumes. The trick is making it easy for team members to find and link related artifacts in another repository without losing or changing their context. Thanks to the Jazz integration architecture and the Open Services for Lifecycle Collaboration specifications, linking artifacts across repositories has never been easier!

Feature Highlights:

The pattern for Linking artifacts

All integrations use the same pattern providing a consistent user experience. Whether you are using Quality Manager, Team Concert, or Requirements Composer, the choices are the same: users can link to existing artifacts, or create and link to an artifact.

  • Link to existing artifacts in across repositories. When linking to an artifact, one product calls the other’s link picking dialog. This dialog allows the user to browse the repository and choose an artifact to link to. The link picking dialog allows the user to search the remote repository without having the change context. An artifact is selected, the ok button is clicked, and the two artifacts are linked.

  • Create and link artifacts in another repository. If an artifact doesn’t exist in the remote repository, create it! When creating an artifact, one product calls the others creation dialog. The dialog is primed with the artifact types the user is allowed to create. When possible information is automatically populated from the host application.

What’s your Link Type?

Link types are used to help you identify the nature of the relationship between two linked artifacts. Understanding the link types helps you identify the nature of the relationships. The link types for artifacts are the same as those used for linking projects.

  • Implements Requirement/ Implemented By – link between a requirement and a work-item that implements the requirement. Work-item implements requirement. Requirement is implemented by work-item.
  • Validates / Validated By – link between a requirement and a test case that confirms the implementation of the requirement. Test case validates requirement. Requirement is validatedby test case. This link type also applies to linking a requirement collection and test plan.
  • Tests/Tested by Test Case – link between a test case and a work-item that the test is for. Test case tests work-item. Work-item is tested by test case.
  • Blocks/Blocked By – link between a test execution and a defect that prevents further testing. Defect blocks test execution. Test execution is blocked by defect.
  • Affects/Affected By – link between a test execution and a defect that affects it. Defect affects test execution. Test execution is affected by Defect.
  • Related Change Request – you can now link work-items across Rational Team Concert servers using the Related Change Request. Work-item is Related To Work-item. If you are using the ClearQuest integration, use this option to link work-items to ClearQuest records.

Learn more about link types and see examples.

Information is at your finger tips with Rich Hovers

When hovering over a link, quickly inspect the status of the artifact in the rich hover. There’s no need to lose your train of thought or contact a co-worker. Simply hover over the link to get up to date information about the artifact at the other end of the link.

If the rich hover doesn’t provide enough information, simply click on the link to navigate to the artifact.

Requirements Composer users can collaborate with Testers

This section describes how users of Requirements Composer can create a shared vision by linking requirements to development and test artifacts.

Linking Requirements Collections to Test Plans

Align plans between requirements and test by linking requirements collections to test plans. By linking the collection to the test plan, Analysts can communicate which requirement collection is important to the test team.

Choosing the menu presents a dialog lising the available test plan for the linked project areas. You can choose one or more test plans to link to. The information in this dialog comes from Rational Quality Manager. This also demonstration the implementation of the OSLC specification.

Linking Requirements to Test Cases

Individual Requirements can be linked to Test cases to ensure the test case accuracy by linking test cases and requirements. When working with an individual requirement, use the “Validated By” menu on the links side bar to interact with Rational Quality Manager.

Choosing the menu presents a dialog listing the available test cases for the linked project areas. One or more test cases can be selected and linked to the requirement. The information in this dialog comes from Rational Quality Manager. This also demonstration the implementation of the OSLC specification.

If a test case doesn’t exist choosing the Create New radio control changes the dialog to allow for the creation of a new test case which will be linked to the requirement.

Requirements Composer users can collaborate with Developers

A common situation for analysts is wondering when the development team is implementing a requirement. By linking requirements to Rational Team Concert work-items, analysts and developers will have the transparency into each other’s work.

Linking Requirements to Rational Team Concert plan items

A Requirements Composer user can link requirements to existing Rational Team Concert work-items. Doing so gives you visibility into when a work-item is being implemented. In addition, developers in Rational Team Concert have links to requirements right in context of the work-items they develop. Start by choosing the Implemented by menu item on the Link side bar.

The Team Concert work-item dialog appears with the option to link to an existing work-item. Typing a keyword automatically searches the Team Concert project and returns matching work-items. Clicking Oklinks the requirement and selected work-item.

Create developer plan items from Requirements

Many times there are new requirements that require the attention of the development team. Now you can communicate these requirements by creating a plan item in Rational Team Concert that is linked to the requirement. More importantly, you can do this without leaving Requirements Composer. Instead the Rational Team Concert creation dialog comes to you!

Note: at this time Requirements Composer users can not link requirements collections to Rational Team Concert release or iteration plans. See the section for user of Rational Team Concert for more information on linking to requirements collections.

Requirements Composer users can collaborate with ClearQuest users

Learn More on the ClearQuest Collaborative ALM Features page.

Rational Team Concert users can collaborate with requirements analysts

Many times the line between what is required and when it can be delivered gets blurred. With the Collaborative ALM integrations between Requirements Composer and Rational Team Concert, now you can align the ‘what’ (requirements) with the ‘when’ (development work-items in a release or iteration plan). Now development teams can easily and transparently communicate when the requirements are planned for delivery.

Creating Plan items from Requirements Collections

Once requirements collections are defined in Rational Requirements Composer, they can be added as work-items on a development plan in Rational Team Concert. The plan Web UI offers a new Work Items from Requirements action in the Add toolbar menu.

After selecting a requirements collection, you can choose which requirements you want to create new work items for:

In a last step a wizard lets you set each new item’s attributes or, alternatively, select attributes to be used for all. Each new work item gets added to the plan and linked to its corresponding requirement.

Linking Plan items with requirements

Individual requirements can be linked to a developer work-item in a release or iteration plan.

 

Note: at this time Team Concert users can not create requirements collections or requirements in Rational Requirements Composer. They can only link to existing requirements.

Rational Team Concert users can collaborate with testers

Are the testers testing this work-item? Works on my machine, I have no idea what the tester did to find that defect. Sound familiar? With Collaborative ALM integrations developers can link to test cases and track test execution. When defects are found, links back to the test execution record reduce the time it takes to recreate a defect.

Linking plan items to test cases for Developers and Testers

To ensure high quality and team alignment, team leads often like to ensure that all of the development plan items have corresponding test cases. Now developers can link a plan item in Rational Team Concert to a test case managed by Rational Quality Manager.

Note: at this time Team Concert users can not create test cases in Rational Quality Manager. They can only link to existing test cases.

Collaborating on Defects

Which defects are blocking the test team? What was the test script used that found the defect? Which build was this defect found in? When tests are executed and defects are submitted the collaboration between developer and tester begins until the defect is closed and verified.With Collaborative ALM links between test execution records and defects, developers can now trace the testers steps by navigating links.

Quality Management users can collaborate with requirements analysts

Test coverage is an important concern for testers. Until now, ensuring you had at least one test case for every requirement was a manual, time consuming and error prone activity.

Linking Test Plans to Requirements Collections

With the Collaborative ALM integrations, testers can link test plans to requirements collections in Requirements Composer, and automatically create a linked test case for every requirement in the collection. Use Quality Manager’s new Test Plan Table of Contents entry called Requirements Collections to access the user interface.

Seeding Test Cases from a Requirements Collection

Got test coverage? Once a test plan is linked to a requirements collection, clicking the <add> button automatically populates the test plan with test cases linked each of the requirements in the collection. Now you can unleash your test teams on creating and executing your test scripts.

Linking Test Cases to Requirements

Sometimes a more subtle approach is required. When test cases already exist, you can individually link them to requirements. Use the requirements links section in the test case table of contents to access the user interface for linking to requirements.

Note: at this time Quality Manager users can not create requirements collections or requirements in Rational Requirements Composer. They can only link to existing requirements.

Quality Management users can collaborate with developers

Linking Test Cases to development plan items

What’s ready to test? How many times have your testers asked that question? Now testers can link Test cases to development work items giving them insight into what and when to test.

Note: at this time Quality Manager users can not create work-items linked to test cases in Rational Team Concert. They can create defects as described below.

Submit a defect in 3 clicks!

Submitting a defect has never been easier! When a test execution fails, use the New Defect action in the test result page to create a new work item in RTC. Quality Manager prefills some of attributes on the work-item, and if the test is manual, the description field is filled with the steps! Set the Filed Against attribute and click OK. In 3 clicks the new defect will automatically be linked to the failed test result.

Link Test results to existing defects

Some defects re-occur at test execution. You can link to existing defects in Team Concert directly from the test execution result.

Communicate when you are blocked

When submitting defects to the development team, leverage the link types provided. Most defects have an affects link type. Occasionally, the defect is so severe it blocks further test execution. Now you can set the blocked status on the defect. Developers in Team Concert can now see which defects are blocking test!

Identify which build a defect was found in

End the run around with development team members by indicating which build defects are found in. Using Rational Quality Manager’s integration with Team Concert builds, you can link your test execution result with a build record in Quality Manager.

 

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