Every technical leader is constantly looking for ways to improve the development processes and quality of a product. Developers and QA engineers are under constant pressure, trying to ensure the best product quality and meet planned deadlines. In such a situation, any techniques and tools that can help to save time without losing quality are valuable, and automation is number one and a must-have. In this article, we are going to figure out the benefits of automation testing, why automation testing is necessary when developing software, and what exactly needs to be automated in the first place.
Why automation testing is necessary
The main argument for automation is the possibility to conduct testing as quickly as possible and run testing in parallel with development. Plus, test scripts allow saving money on hiring manual testers.
In the view of Bruce Hogan, CEO of SoftwarePundit, automation testing has the following benefits:
- Quick feedback on the new code
- Increased throughput for testers to investigate more complex potential problems.
Jorge Perdomo, a Co-Founder of goTenna, believes that automation testing is the only way to scale a high-quality tech product. Otherwise, the workload on QA specialists increases so much that they barely have time to deal with regressions.
Experts confirm that automation has clear benefits. The automation saves time and money, delivers fast results, and allows running hundreds of tests simultaneously. This, in turn, provides a means for scalability.
So, the necessity of automation is confirmed. Now we need to find out what exactly should be automated to get the maximum result.
Which tests should be automated
It should be immediately clarified: despite the fact that automation testing is necessary, there is no way of automating everything. Automation, although an effective tool, is not suitable everywhere and doesn’t solve all problems.
For test automation to work, a thorough assessment of the current QA process is required. It is necessary to divide the process into parts, evaluate each part separately, and then make a decision. A company needs to identify those tests, the automation of which will be the most beneficial, and make a plan.
IBM research shows that there are three main scenarios where automation is preferred over manual testing:
- The test script is expected to be relevant for a long time and will not need to be changed.
- The script is relatively easy to automate.
- The cost of automation is lower than the cost of manual testing.
If the testing process fits at least one of these categories, this is a serious reason to think about automation. No manager wants to waste their team members’ valuable time on the work that an automated algorithm can do.
Which tests should not be automated
In short, it’s not recommended to automate processes that include a creative component. For example, during exploratory testing, experts imitate the actions of a user in order to assess the application from the user’s point of view. As of now, full imitation of human behavior using AI is not possible. Developing a bot that can perform actions as close to a human as possible is a resource-consuming task, and in the vast majority of cases, it doesn't pay off.
Exploratory testing and UX tests are methods that can’t be automated because they are subjective.
Another factor to consider is product maturity. In his book, Leading Quality, Ronald Cummings-John explains how a testing strategy should be adapted as the product changes and grows. For example, automated testing is ineffective when working with a product at an early stage of its development. When the main goal is to create an MVP, writing detailed test scripts is impractical.
However, as the product is scaling, testing must be scaling as well. As the number of users grows, quality becomes more important and more expensive, so automation becomes a reasonable solution.
Thus, the decision to use automation testing comes down to analyzing the current process and finding where automation fits.
When deciding whether you need automation testing right now, answer the following four questions:
- Do you expect the test scripts to be relevant for a long time without any changes or editing?
- Will it be cheaper to automate testing than conduct it manually?
- Will it be easy to automate a test?
- How mature is your product? Do you expect most of its functions to be changed in the coming months?
If you are not sure about how to identify the necessity of automation testing in your project, contact experts. Andersen provides software test automation services for any type of product. Our QA Automation Testers provide QA Audit services to identify drawbacks in software testing, including readiness to launch test automation.
After an Audit, we identify the automation test strategy and Set up the automation testing process.
In fact, we have found that a blend of manual and automated testing is the best way to achieve full test coverage and deliver the highest quality product. We have set up automated testing in 120+ projects including FinTech, Travel, and Retail projects.
Hello! My name is Evgeniy. I am Head of QA Department. We have been providing a full range of software testing services for 13 years. Our engineers have experience in testing web, mobile, and desktop applications, as well as expertise in test automation. We conduct audits of testing processes and consultations on testing and quality assurance.