Today we look at Automation testing. We employ technique to automate tasks that are both repetitive and difficult to perform manually. This completes our series of articles on the different types of software testing.
What is Automation Testing?
This method replaces manual testing and we use it to verify the actual outcome against the expected outcome. At the end of the day, even software testers are human beings. They simply cannot replicate the same actions with the same amount of energy, accuracy or speed on every occasion. This is where machines step in and automation becomes crucial. It should not replace people but aid them in completing more testing.
Top Tip: Four steps to take to introduce automation testing in your company
- Convince management
- Find the right experts & tools plus the right applications for automated testing
- Create the framework & a plan of execution
- Write your scripts, create your reports & maintain your scripts
Summary of automated testing steps
The average software tester is no stranger when it comes to convincing those in charge about the benefits of testing. This is no different with the introduction of test automation. It is actually even harder as it is usually quite expensive. Results can take months to generate as we refine scripts, so we have learnt to be very patient! However, that patience will certainly be rewarded. Costs will come down once the scripts are executing. We have also achieved a greater number of tests.
It is important that you deploy experienced testers. You must also use the tools best suited to the application being tested. Certain applications will lend themselves more to automated methods than others. It is therefore vital that you make that distinction before the testing begins. For example, if an application has yet to undergo manual testing then it should not be a prime candidate for automation.
Framework & Execution Planning
The next step should be to focus upon your framework and an execution plan. The automation framework will need to support your testing efforts over a long period of time. It must contain all the rules that will go into your scripts. It goes without saying that a great deal of care must be put into both this and your plan. The plan must include the environments that scripts will be executed within (i.e. the browser). It must also identify who will be responsible for running each script.
With personnel, tools, a framework and a plan all in place, you now need to write your scripts. You must also create the reports that will assist you in assessing the testing efforts. It is imperative to work with best practices in mind at this stage. The scripts should contain organised naming conventions. All reports need to be custom-made to suit your exact objectives. Maintaining your scripts is a must and should be straightforward provided you have written them correctly; as testing evolves, so must the scripts to cope.
Automated testing is an important part of the testing process as a whole. It should be used in conjunction with manual testing – not as a substitute for it. For more information or advice on testing, contact our experts and they’ll be happy to help!
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