Software creation is a tedious process that can take months or even years. Developers often complete one unit at a time, and it takes longer to get the entire product going. During the entire process, testing ensures all components work as intended.
You have two basic approaches to testing – manual and automatic. Manual tests are those you handle yourself. Engineers often do exploratory manual tests to identify bugs they haven’t noticed before. But optimal software functioning includes the capability of handling heavy loads and adequate integration of different system components.
It takes time and effort to do all those checks manually. That’s where automated testing comes into play by employing automatic processes to perform certain analyses. Unlike manual testing which was a great method a few years ago and requires human participation, automated testing is run by scripts written beforehand and can be used unlimited times. This advanced testing approach can significantly help during the development process. Let’s check the main benefits of automatic tests and how to integrate them into the workflow!
Why Should You Use Automatic Testing?
Software development business owners might think automated testing is more expensive than a manual approach. And while that’s true initially, automatic tests are more cost-effective in the long run. They’ll speed up the testing time and enable your human workforce to dedicate itself to other tasks.
Apart from being a wise long-term investment, automated testing comes with the following benefits:
- Faster delivery and development. Automatic tests help keep up with the development schedule. If you have repeatable tests, performing them daily is a hassle. If you automate the process, you get reliable results quickly. It’s convenient to accelerate the development cycle and discover bugs in time.
- Improved productivity. Your engineers won’t spend time testing the finished units because a computer will do that. Instead, they can focus on developing another component.
- More accurate results. If you design the automatic process well, you’ll get 100% accurate results. There’s no risk of human error with automated tests, meaning you can trust the data completely.
- It’s often the only way. For example, what if you need 10,000 visitors to use the app simultaneously to test the load? It’s impossible to organize that manually, but you can simulate those conditions with automatic tests.
- Maximum return on investment. Automated testing software reduces the sum spent on testing per hour. Additionally, it speeds up development and helps deliver a better product. These factors combined will secure a maximum ROI from acquiring these tools.
How to Integrate Automated Testing into the Workflow
If you don’t have previous experience with automatic tests, it takes time to optimize everything. The good news is that integrating this method can speed up development and help to design a better final product. These steps will help integrate automatic tests into the workflow.
Which Tests Can You Automate?
It’s imperative to understand you can’t automate everything. For some tests, you need a human engineer to perform them to identify mistakes. But most checks are suitable for automation.
Here are some factors that will show which tests to automate:
- Do you plan to repeat the same test for multiple versions?
- Is the chance of a human error for that analysis high?
- Do you need to simulate conditions that aren’t easy to prepare manually?
- Would you like to check how your product works on different browsers, operating systems, or configurations?
- Would it take a lot of time to handle that test manually?
Optimal planning and setting test parameters are imperative for test automation to succeed. You begin by identifying the tests and then define the goal. Your objective should be clear, so the computer would understand what result is “correct” or “wrong.”
During the planning phase, you decide on the tests and actions the computer will perform during the process. You can divide a big test into several smaller units. It’s a smart approach if you need to add smaller components down the road. The final step is grouping those tests into one extensive analysis. It might be necessary to perform tests on a certain schedule.
The Importance of the Right Tool
You need test automation software that meets your expectations. For starters, it needs to support the technologies and platforms you use. That includes operating systems, environments, browsers, etc. This is imperative because you don’t want to rewrite the test for different platforms. That’s a huge downside that wastes time and decreases the software’s versatility and usability.
The test automation tool should feature an intuitive user interface. It should be easy to create the tests and adjust them to your needs. The analysis should be detailed but understandable. Anyone should be able to generate comprehensive reports and access the desired information.
You’ll need an engineer to set the tool to perform the desired tests. The features offered should make this job easy for them. Using data-driven testing, setting custom criteria and metrics, or joining separate tests into a group are some features the best tools out there deliver.
Ultimately, you shouldn’t hesitate to give automated testing a shot. It was created to simplify things for the developers. It can be your best companion during the software creation process and a tool that will ensure you deliver the best possible product!