Testing is an essential part of product development, one that helps guarantee the quality of the product. Software tests need to be repeated several times during the development cycle to ensure quality. For every release, it has to be tested on all operating systems and hardware configurations.
Automation testing or test automation uses open source or paid automated testing tools to test software applications quickly and efficiently, and 24/7 without human intervention. Automated software testing can reveal the memory contents, data tables, and file contents; this helps to determine if the programme is functioning as required.
With test automation, one can execute thousands of varied and lengthy test cases that are impossible in manual testing. It can increase the depth of tests to improve software quality.
It is advantageous as it performs the tasks of many manual testers, and improves overall accuracy with little or no manual intervention. As pre-written scripts are tested, this ensures that software of standard quality is released.
Automation testing follows a testing framework approach. The most common ones being, keyword driven framework, data driven framework, linear scripting framework and modular testing framework.
Table of Contents:
- What Types of Tests Can Be Automated?
- What Are the Advantages of Automation Testing?
- When Should You Not Use Automation Testing?
What Types of Tests Can Be Automated?
There are several types of tests that can be automated, including:
- Unit tests: These tests focus on individual units of code, such as functions or methods, to ensure that they are working correctly.
- Integration tests: These tests focus on the interactions between different units of code, to ensure that they are working together correctly.
- Functional tests: These tests focus on the overall functionality of the system, to ensure that it is working as expected from the user’s perspective.
- Performance tests: These tests focus on measuring the performance of the system, such as response time and throughput, to ensure that it can handle the expected load.
- Acceptance tests: These tests focus on verifying that the system meets the acceptance criteria defined by the customer or stakeholders.
- Security tests: These tests focus on identifying and addressing security vulnerabilities in the system.
- Regression tests: These tests focus on identifying and addressing regressions, or unintended changes, that occur as a result of code changes.
- Smoke tests: These tests are used to quickly verify that the system is in a stable state after a code change, and is worth to proceed with more detailed testing.
Automated testing can be done using test automation frameworks and tools like JUnit, TestNG, Selenium, Appium, Cucumber, etc.
Here are some of the advantages of automation testing:
1. Increase in test coverage: More scripts can be tested at the same time, resulting in an increase in the test coverage. It helps save time and takes the load off of manual testers.
2. Greater accuracy: Continuous testing increases chances of errors while done manually, but in automated testing, repetitive tests can be performed with the same precision.
3. Cost saving: With automated testing, the test cases run at a faster speed and bugs are identified early on in the development cycle and fixed. Despite high initial costs, once the automated framework is set up, there is an overall reduction in the costs.
4. Reduces regression testing time: Automated regression practiced with testing tools allows manual testers to be freed from running monotonous regression tests. The testers get time to perform value-add tasks.
5. Performs tasks that cannot be done by manual testers: Certain tests such as the controlled web application tests can be simulated with automated testing, but cannot be performed by manual testers.
6. Time-saving: With automated testing, manual scripts are also automated and regression testing time is reduced. As tests are run 24/7, automated testing saves time.
7. Reusability of test scripts: In automated testing, the same script can be used with minor changes. Thus, reusability of test scripts facilitates the process of testing, and also, the same scripts can be stored and reused for repeating the test when the need arises.
8. Helpful to testers: Since tests can run automatically when the source code changes and notify the testers of any issue, it is very helpful to both testers and developers.
9. Return on investment is high: Automation help businesses complete the testing process faster with greater accuracy and coverage, thereby resulting in high return of investment.
When Should You Not Use Automation Testing?
There are certain situations where automated testing may not be the best option:
- The application has a short lifespan: Automated testing requires a significant investment of time and resources to set up, so it may not be cost-effective for applications that have a short lifespan or are expected to change frequently.
- The application has a low level of complexity: Automated testing is best suited for complex applications that are expected to be in use for an extended period of time. If the application is relatively simple, manual testing may be more efficient.
- The application has a high degree of unpredictability: Applications that have a high degree of unpredictability, such as those that involve real-time user interactions, may be difficult to automate.
- The application has a high degree of human interaction: Applications that require a lot of human interaction, such as those that involve image and video recognition, may be difficult to automate.
- The application is in early development stages: Automated tests are best suited for the later stages of development when the application has a more stable design, automated tests may not be useful in early development stages where requirements and design are still in flux.
- The application has low test coverage: Automated tests are best suited for applications with high test coverage, if the application has low test coverage, it is better to manually test the application.
It is important to consider these factors and weigh the costs and benefits of automated testing before deciding whether to use it. Sometimes manual testing may be more efficient and cost-effective than automated testing.
With increasingly complex applications in place, and with businesses demanding faster releases of standard quality products, automated testing is an effective process which helps improve both test efficiency and coverage.
At Hurix Digital, we provide QA services with the test automation framework built in-house. Our team of QA professionals use various testing techniques and follow the best industry standards and practices. So if you are looking for an automation testing service, get in touch with us.
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