Software development processes are evolving at a fast pace. The introduction and adoption of agile methodologies, followed by the increasing demand and acceptance of DevOps for software development requires the speed and precision of machines. Test automation powers this efficiency and agility throughout the software development life cycle to ensure quality software delivery within quick turnaround time.
This whitepaper outlines the groundwork required to create a firm foundation for test automation and highlights the trends in test automation to keep pace with the evolving test automation landscape.
Automation needs preparation
It is a transformational phase for testing teams. Hard-pressed with immediacy to deliver quality software, organizations are leveraging test automation to accelerate development cycles. Automation testing is not just helping testing teams improve the coverage of their tests ; it also provides increased quality, shorter testing cycles, and cost savings. While there are a few who are reaping benefits through automation, it isn’t the same for all as automation testing requires skills, planning, and the right testing tools to excel.
It is no hop, skip, and jump to attain efficiency in test automation and derive optimal value. Test automation requires a strong foundation built on three quintessential pillars of People, Process & Technology.
Collate to automate
While test automation can build momentum and accelerate a process, it can become cost-expensive and less impactful if not conceived and governed well. Organizations need to collate all its valuable and experienced resources to initiate and drive test automation. Though test automation has proved its merit, it is getting challenged by indecisiveness. Unfortunately, smart automation can have a significant impact on quality software development.
People, process, and technology are essential drivers that need to align to provide high-quality, result-yielding, cost-effective test automation.
Automation requires individuals with the requisite skills and know-how on what, when, and how to automate, strategically. A significant impediment for businesses looking to automate is the lack of expertise to utilize the right testing tools for specific test scenarios. An expert understanding of the available automation resources such as proprietary, open-source, and commercial tools can enable test teams to automate with confidence, saving on time and costs.
Test automation teams need to strategize as automation focusses on ROI. An unorganized approach to test automation can cost the organization big bucks. Teams have to chalk out a well-thought strategy to initiate and drive automation.
We believe that the following will be crucial in 2020
Risk assessing capabilities
Understanding and skills to utilize multiple automation tools and frameworks
Awareness about exploratory automation and tools
Ability to strategize and plan
The rise of agile methodologies integrated with DevOps is a visible trend driving the software development lifecycle. Automation is integral to the fast-paced development environment hinging heavily on continuous integration and continuous development. Enabling CI/CD through integrated application lifecycle management and processes, tools that help the organization to manage the complete software development lifecycle, efficiently, will become the norm.
CI/CD will further be buoyed with a focus on in-sprint automation and ensure testing runs parallel to development, with features, releases, and updates getting tested as they get developed.
Instant feedback to help developers make in the moment design decisions
Provide manager with data to assess a release
Multiple tests through the day
Increased efficiency minimize risks
Reduce defect fixing time
More time for feature development
Technology, as a capability, has been driving businesses for decades now. Every turn of a decade introduces new technologies to better business efficiencies. Some technologies were created in the past but are finding their relevance and prominence now. Technologies such as artificial intelligence that have withered the AI winters have become the much sought after capability. This section provides a rundown on the technologies and tools that can help you forge ahead with test automation in 2020.
Testing of application programming interfaces directly or as part of integration testing to determine the functionality, reliability, performance and security of a software product referred to as API testing. These tests are carried out at the interface layer.
Some of the popular API testing automation tools:
AI lighting up the test automation sky; Tools that leverage AI
Here is a list of AI-powered automation tools that can help you forge ahead with automation in 2020.
Some of the frameworks that will assist tester’s up their game
An open-source automation framework, Robot Framework, is one of the top python-based test frameworks. It is used for acceptance testing, acceptance test-driven development (ATDD), and robotic process automation. The structure utilizes a keyword-driven testing approach and operates using tabular test data syntax.
Easily create readable test cases based on a keyword-driven approach, making automation simpler
Convenience of using test data syntax
A vast ecosystem comprising generic tools and test libraries enables the use of individual elements in separate projects
High number of API's make the framework highly extensible
Reduce defect fixing time
Run parallel tests using the selenium grid as a separate layer
Inadequacy for parallel testing
Cloud and native CI/DevOps integrations
Intelligent analytics-driven dashboard and reports
Multiple Testing options
Keywords Driven Data-Driven API Testing Cross Browser
Reduce defect fixing time
Parallel execution on various environments customized as per framework
Easy to comprehend user interface
Limited scripting language support
Right technology to bolster existing or planned processes
Identifying and engaging with different levels of automation
Identifying the right framework and tools
Leveraging 5th Gen technology capabilities, AI/ML
Our belief is that Automation is one of the key imperatives that will drive the testing narrative in 2020
Emphasis on delivering quality software within a shorter turnaround time necessitates the need for automation. Automation can be rewarding but requires strategizing. Test teams should have their automation strategies validated and planned in the initial stages of software development, with an allocated budget. Testing teams should ensure that automation fits the bill to compliment continuous integration and delivery and is efficiently amalgamated with the software development lifecycle. Another area to be focussed on would be the tools and frameworks that would ensure a seamless transition and implementation of test automation.
A firm footing concerning people, process, and technology is the way to implement and integrate test automation. It bodes well for organizations looking to automate the complete software development lifecycle.