We live in a quality-obsessed world. The consequences of unnoticed defects in the production environment can be devastating, from low customer satisfaction and negative reviews to higher maintenance costs. It is crucial to perform comprehensive software testing during development for the best outcomes. Software testing helps us to determine that the software meets the standard requirements. It also ensures that it is free of defects and bugs or anything that can ruin the user experience of the software. Automation testing allows developers to perform more tests in less time. This article explains how you can increase the quality of your software with automation testing.
Automation Testing: What It Entails
Automation testing is a testing method that employs special automation tools to perform tests on an application. Unlike manual testing, where someone has to use a series of steps to check if the program is running as it should, automation testing requires minimal human intervention. You only need to create the test once, and you can deploy it anytime you need to perform a check on your application. By using automation testing techniques, you can execute high-level, exploratory testing on your application more effectively with no glitches that can lead to costly setbacks such as project delays or worse, customer dissatisfaction.
Automation testing can be valuable when the test to be performable is tedious, repetitive, and business-critical. It eliminates the probability of error and helps speed up testing times. There are different types of automation testing, including unit, integration, system, and acceptance tests. They are executed at various stages of the application development.
- Unit test checks the functions of the application.
- Integration test analyzes the modules or subunits
- System test verifies the complete application
- Acceptance test checks that the application performs what the user expects it to do.
The importance of software testing cannot be overemphasized. If bugs and defects are allowed to slip through, it can cause huge problems. A famous example is Flud, a social news reader application, that shut down in 2013. The app was riddled with bugs and glitches when it was first released. This gave it a bad reputation. Even when the developers eliminated the bugs and resolved the issue, the damage to their reputation was irreversible. They could have avoided this if proper software testing had been conducted before the app was released to the public.
Increasing the Quality of Your Software with Automation Testing
Effective software testing must be implemented during the development process to build high-quality software. Here are some tips to increase the quality of your software with automation testing.
Start Testing Early in the Development Life Cycle
By testing early, you will be able to notice defects during the design phase before they transform into more significant issues later. Most teams place testing as the last step before production, which is a mistake. Considering that the cost of finding and fixing a bug increases ten times with each development stage, it is better to test early. For instance, if you discover a bug during the development phase, you may end up paying $100, but if you find it during the final product implementation process, you may end up paying $10,000 or more.
Define The Scope of Automation
It is crucial to define the area of the application under the test. Defining the scope of automation helps you determine the deliverables’ quality. Ensure you know the test state, the amount of test data, and the environment where the test will take place. Here are some things to consider when defining the scope of the automation:
- The complexity of the test cases
- Technical feasibility
- The features that are vital to the business
- Common functionality across different applications
- The extent to which the business components are reused
Choose The Right Automation Tool And Approach
You must select the right automation tools to perform effective software testing. This depends on the test aim and what you want to achieve from the test automation. For instance, performance testing requires a different tool from functional testing. The selected tool for the software testing must be compatible with the project.
Employ Code Quality Measurement
You could employ code quality measurements to know exactly what to test in the software. You could also set standards to automate software measurements from the CISQ Software Quality Model. This model analyzes your software according to four factors:
- Performance Efficiency
After the automation testing has been completed, you should store the test cases in a repository and review them at the end of the test run. It is also vital to update the existing test cases and remove the outdated ones after the development cycle.
Report Bugs and Defects Effectively
After the software test, you should prepare a good bug report that effectively highlights the bugs and defects observed during testing. The bug report should contain a record of the error, an explanation of the possible error, reproduction steps, and possible solutions to the problems.