TEST AUTOMATION: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
WHAT IS TEST AUTOMATION?
Test Automation or automated testing is a software testing technique that is used to test and compare the actual results against the expected results with the help of specialized tools.
It is basically a quality assurance measure. However, its activities involve the entire software team’s commitment, not just the quality assurance team.
REASONS TO OPT FOR TEST AUTOMATION
Here are the top reasons that justify the need and importance of implementing automation testing in your application model:
Improves test accuracy
Even your most conscientious tester is prone to making mistakes owing to the monotonous nature of manual testing. Automated testing is capable of performing the repetitive testing steps with higher precisions. Companies can put their human resources in places that require human intelligence.
Reduced business expenses
When companies opt for an automated test environment, it helps them save the money on resources needed for testing the product. However, you need to install and set up an automated test environment, which will take time and resources.
Easy regression testing
Conducting regression testing manually is a time-consuming task. Performing the same test time and again may bring down the overall efficiency of the tester. Moreover, manual regression testing cannot be thoroughly performed each time the software gets updated. Hence, automation testing is the best approach to regression testing.
The effectiveness of testing hugely depends on the quality of the test data. Manual creation of test data will take time, and so, testing is often performed on copies of live databases. On the other hand, automation testing can help create, manipulate, and protect your test database. This way, you can re-use your data over and over again.
CONS OF TEST AUTOMATION
Even though test automation has many pros, it has certain cons too. Here are a few of them:
Proficiency is needed to write test automation scripts.
Debugging can be a nightmare to the developers. If the test script has errors, it may lead to deadly consequences.
In the case of playback methods, test maintenance can prove to be costly.
When the test script tests more screens, maintenance of data files can become challenging.
IMPORTANCE OF TEST AUTOMATION IN AGILE TESTING
Agile software development refers to a group of software development procedures that follow the approach of iterative development. Here, the requirements evolve gradually through collaboration between teams. Agile helps the teams in delivering value faster – with better quality.
In agile software development, automation is gaining popularity over a couple of years. Here are a few reasons why automation testing is becoming an integral part of agile testing:
Agile projects do start with a complete and final set of requirements. Requirements come up as the project proceeds – based on customer preferences, market trends, end-user needs, etc. Due to the dynamic nature of agile, testing has to be effective enough to meet the changes. Automation helps in responding faster and more effectively to the changes.
Once a script is developed, agile developers can use it n number of times to test the software bug. To add to that, different changes can be easily made in the same script for later requirements.
Agile projects come with a short development cycle. The teams have just a few weeks to understand the requirements, make changes in the code, and test them. If all these procedures were to be done manually, time would suppress the fixed deadline. Moreover, in such a situation, testing would be hurried, thus impacting the quality.
TEST AUTOMATION IN CI/CD PROCESS
Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Delivery (CD) is used to refer to the process that allows the application development teams to deliver code changes more frequently and reliably. This set of operating practices is also known as the CI/CD pipeline.
When you are working on a complex application, you cannot make it flawless without implementing automation testing in your pipeline. Well, if you are looking for specific reasons for the same, here are they:
Easy handling of changes as they come
In the CI/CD pipeline, changes are often small but essential. Test automation allows better management of these changes and helps deliver an effective system at the end.
A smart CI/CD pipeline must have as few anomalies as possible. Automation helps in ensuring that process consistency is maintained and client expectations are met at the end.
Changes in frameworks, configurations, and tools get challenging to implement in case of manual testing. However, when we have automation testing in place, most of this configuration management is done automatically, thereby saving the testers’ time and effort.
BEST TOOLS FOR TEST AUTOMATION
Choosing the right tools for test automation is as important as choosing the development approach. After all, testing tools ensure the quality of the end product to be delivered to the client. Here are some of the best test automation tools in 2020 loved by developers across the world:
Selenium is the tool that every test prefers when it comes to automation testing. This tool is considered the industry standard for user interface automation testing.
For developers and testers with experience in programming and scripting, Selenium offers flexibility that is missing in other testing tools. Teams can write their own test scripts in various programming languages, including Java, Groovy, Python, C#, PHP, etc. Additionally, these scripts can run on various environments such as Windows, Mac, and Linux.
Katalon Studio is an open-source automation tool that extends support to both web and mobile environments. This tool works on top of Selenium and Appium and therefore uplifts these frameworks with tools such as spy, user-friendly IDE, object repository & browser plugin.
Katalon Studio uses Groovy as its scripting language and offers support to the external Java library. Developers have a choice to re-use the Selenium scripts written in Java language. Additionally, this test automation tool works flawlessly with Continuous Integration systems like Jenkins, Bamboo, and TeamCity.
UTF (Unified Functional Testing) One is one of the best testing tools for end-to-end testing. It is created to boost the testing process of over 200 enterprise apps, technologies, and environments. Developers and testers can use UTF One to automate tests with AI-based capabilities for greater productivity and resilience.
As UTF One uses Visual Basic script (VB script), teams find it extremely useful compared to high-level programming languages. Some of the notable features of this tool include keyword-driven testing, data-driven testing, modular, and hybrid methods.
It extends support for regression, parallel, and cross-browser testing capabilities along with a wide range of applications such as .Net and iOS and Android apps. Developers can use TestComplete to scale the test over more than 1500 real test environments. It ensures complete coverage and improved quality of the application to be delivered.
The best way to ensure the quality of the end application is through proper testing. However, manual testing is prone to errors and negligence. That’s where automation testing plays a key role.
More and more organizations are shifting to automation testing to deliver high-quality applications – faster. This article covered various approaches to automation testing and its use in various development processes. It is intended to help the testers for the successful execution of their testing projects