Why QA Automation is important today?
With the increasing pace of technology, it becomes challenging for companies to manage the quality of their web applications. Due to the limited time window in agile development and cost factors, testing often misses out on the attention it deserves.
Every company developing a product should have tests in place. Testing is an essential part of product development, especially to guarantee quality. Many smaller and mid-sized companies don’t give testing much attention even though it’s essential for delivering a strong product. Just like it’s important to have tests in place, it also matters how we run these tests.
Lack of proper testing leads to bad quality products, delayed delivery, unsatisfied custom service, and an increase in costs. The reason behind such issues can be an unplanned test management strategy, delay in development, and underestimation of the effort of creating a test case.
Here, we’ll explore what automated QA is, how it’s used, and why it can benefit your company.
What Is QA Automation?
Quality Assurance (QA) Automation is the application of tools and technology to testing software with the goal of reducing testing efforts, delivering capability faster and more affordably. It helps in building better quality software with less effort.
The fundamental difference between manual and automated testing is straightforward. With manual testing, a human is responsible for single-handedly testing the functionality of the software in the way a user would. Automated testing is done through an automation tool, so more time can be spent on higher-value tasks, such as exploratory tests while automating time-consuming tests, such as regression tests. While you do need to spend time maintaining test scripts overall, you will increase your test coverage and scalability.
Many companies are already using automation testing to a certain extent, but still, largely depend on manual tests because they don’t know how to properly leverage the benefits of automated testing in their development process.
How Does QA Automated Testing Work?
There are a number of important stages in the automated QA testing process, which typically run in parallel with the software development life cycle.
- Define the scope
First, consider what the testing process aims to achieve, and run a feasibility analysis. Which of the tests can be automated and which require manual involvement? You’ll also need to factor in aspects like budget, personnel, and expertise.
- Choose an automation tool
Obviously, you need a tool that fits your requirements, but the choice will also depend on the technology of the app you’re testing. There are plenty of automation tools to choose from, so consider cost, functionality, intuitiveness, and flexibility. Make sure the QA team receives guidance on how to get the best out of the chosen tool.
- Design a strategy
The QA team should create a test plan that sets out the approach and end-goal of the project, and choose a suitable framework for the test cases to operate in. The framework should contain common practices, testing tools, and standards. Common test automation frameworks include data-driven, keyword-driven, linear scripting, and modular testing.
- Set the environment
It’s necessary to create the right environment for testing and maximize test coverage across multiple scenarios. The test team will schedule and track environment set up activities such as installing software and hardware and developing testbed scripts.
- Write a script
At this stage, QA engineers will write scripts to perform the tests, based on actual requirements and scripting standards. Scripts should be reusable, structured, and easy for a third person to understand.
There are several open-source tools that allow you to create your own automated test scripts and test web applications across multiple browsers in various programming languages like Java and Python.
- Execute the tests
There are two main ways to automate QA testing: GUI (graphical user interface) testing and API testing. GUI is a type of QA testing that aims to imitate the user experience with the software. It can be run the same way each time, or test different software features in each iteration.
API testing is used to test the application programming interface. It is used to assess in-house and third-party APIs, with a focus on assessing end-to-end transactions and individual components.
- Analyze and report
Once the tests have been executed, the automated tool will generate a report. The results will show which components contain bugs or defects, and whether or not additional testing is required.
Different Types of Automated Testing
There are different types of testing that can be added to your automated testing setup. Let’s take a look at the possibilities and what they are meant for.
- Smoke Tests:
Smoke tests are a type of Functional test that only covers the most crucial features of a software solution to ensure that it could be further tested without “catching fire,” hence the name Smoke Tests.
- Integration Tests:
Integration tests take all the individual pieces and functionalities of a software solution and test them together as a whole to guarantee smooth operation between all of them.
- Regression Tests:
Regression tests run a combination of Functional and Non-functional tests to check if the software has “regressed” after a given change.
- Security Tests:
Security tests cover Functional and Non-functional tests that screen the software for any vulnerabilities. They reveal weaknesses and any potential exploit in a system.
- Performance Tests:
Performance tests are often Non-functional tests that help testers evaluate criteria like responsiveness and stability as the software handles load and stress.
- Acceptance Tests:
Acceptance tests are functional tests that determine how acceptable the software is to the end-users. This is the final test a solution must pass before it could be released.
Benefits of Implementing QA Automation Testing For Your Organization
Let us walk you through ten key reasons why QA automation testing is worth implementing in your project.
It comes as no surprise that while the initial investment may be on the higher side, automated testing saves companies many a penny. This is predominantly due to the sharp drop in the amount of time required to run tests. It contributes to a higher quality of work, thereby decreasing the necessity for fixing glitches after release and reducing project costs.
- Fast Development and Delivery
Test automation will help you save time. Automated tests are completed rapidly and can be run repeatedly. In other words, you don’t have to wait for weeks to execute the tests all over again – just a few hours will be enough.
Thanks to fast test execution and the repeatable nature of tests, automated testing increases the speed of development. Here are some of the advantages you get by speeding up the testing process with automation:
A shorter software development cycle
Quicker changes and updates to the app
Faster time-to-market delivery
As you can see, switching from manual testing to automation will reduce the waiting time and boost your development.
- High App Quality and Performance
Thanks to the extensive test coverage, automated testing will ensure your app’s high quality and performance. It allows you to run thousands of automated test cases simultaneously, so you can easily test your app against multiple platforms, on several devices at a time.
What’s more, with automated testing, you can create many test cases quickly, including the complex and the lengthy ones. This is something you can never do if you choose to test your app manually.
- More Accurate Tests
Even the best testing engineer will make mistakes during manual testing. Especially when testing a complex use case, faults can occur. On the other side, automated tests can execute tests with 100-percent accuracy as they produce the same result every time you run them.
- Immediate Feedback
Another benefit of automated testing is instant feedback. With fast test execution, developers get testing reports instantly, so whenever a failure occurs, they will react to it quickly. Forget about struggling to decipher the code written three weeks ago.
Immediate feedback is especially useful when your application is already on the market. If you need to fix some bugs quickly, manual testing will only slow the process down. By contrast, test automation will help you make quick updates to your application. As a result, automated testing brings high team responsiveness, better user experience, and higher customer satisfaction.
- Improved Risk Mitigation
If an automated test fails, code can be fixed immediately — well before it makes its way to production. This not only keeps costs down, but it helps DevOps managers make better decisions before releasing software updates.
- Faster Time to Market
As we said earlier, newly developed features can be continuously tested and validated with test automation. This reduces the feedback and testing cycle and allows companies to bring their products to the market faster.
- Reusability of Test Suite
Due to the repetitive nature of test automation test cases, in addition to the relatively easy configuration of their setup, software developers have the opportunity to assess program reaction. Automated test cases are reusable and can hence be utilized through different approaches.
- Better Insights
Automated testing provides better insights than manual testing when some tests fail. Automated software testing not only gives insights into the application but also shows you the memory contents, data tables, file contents, and other internal program states. This helps developers determine what’s gone wrong.
- Less Stress on QA Team
By automating your testing procedure, your QA team has to spend less time validating newly developed features. It also improves communication with other departments like marketing, design, or product owners who rely on the results of these tests. These departments can easily check the logs of the automated tests and see what’s happening.
Ensuring a Successful QA Automation Testing with Nearshore Outsourcing
Most companies have already realized the benefits of automated testing and are implementing it in their software product development cycle.
Automation testing is important because it enables the organization to achieve the goals of testing with ease and at the same time, fetches high ROI that more than compensates for the initial investment.
For companies based in the US, outsourcing to Mexico is a unique way because it includes more benefits than any other option available. So choosing the right digital transformation and agile partner is key. Technology and expertise are essential to successful projects.
We here at Ascend would love to help your insurance company with your digital transformation through Nearshore outsourcing and Agile Software Development to achieve your business objectives.
Our competitive advantages are the 20+ years of experience in the insurance industry, a reliable talent pool of skilled IT professionals and agile delivery teams, cost-effective solutions according to your needs, and multiple facets of services like Legacy Systems Modernization and Maintenance, QA Automation and Software Testing, etc.