Stopping heuristics that I use regularly:
- “We’re going to production with what we have now”, or any other external influence/stakeholder that informs me that my testing activities will not be considered valuable
- When another project/test becomes more important than the one I am doing now
- When the last x tests/sessions I ran only discovered info that I already knew, and I need to take a step back (defocus) until I have some new inspiration/data that might lead to an interesting test (where x = variable depending on work load & energy levels)
Usually, these three work for any testing project.
For automation, the heuristics would be different, but with a similar focus: what is the most important test that I can automate now? So I would probably use stopping heuristics like:
- When an external influence makes it so that any additional work that I do will not impact the (future) quality of the product
- When I get other priorities
- When any automation, that I can think of now, will not add additional value; then I will have to defocus, and maybe do some testing, which can lead to new insights for which some automation work would be useful
So, in a sense, I use the same general heuristics on every project. The context can change what they mean, though.