When you introduce automated tests in your organisation you have to keep in mind that it is not only a matter of choosing the best tool. Such a move also entails many changes in the organizational scheme of the team. There are also many other factors that have to be considered before you start introducing automated tests. How to prepare for it so that your “mission” would not be a failure?
According to the World Quality Report 2018-2019 prepared by Capgemini, end-user satisfaction became an important priority for QA and strategic software testing teams. As we can read in the summary of the report, “Low levels of automation and challenges with test data and test environments are holding back QA and testing efficiencies”. At a time when more and more software is developed and there is a permanent lack of people able to test it, appropriately selected and implemented tool for test automatization is worth its weight in gold. The tool itself is not a guarantee of success understood as an increased effectiveness of the work and test coverage if you don’t take into account the following issues:
Testing strategy in the project
„Automated tests” is a keyword that describes the whole group of solutions on different levels of advancement. On this market there are available simple extensions for recording tests in the browser, created 10 years ago, as well as state-of-the-art tools based on artificial intelligence. Before you make a decision about using free software you may want to ask yourself few questions.
- What kind of bugs do you want to detect the most?
- What kind of tests do you want to automate (mobile application or the website? GUI or compatibility issues? Security or operating fluency?
- What parts of the project in which you would like to implement automated tests are the most prone to bugs?
- Which bugs in the software that you test would be the most expensive taking into account the end-user satisfaction? (or its lack) Which ones would be the most expensive for the sake of the amount of time needed to fix them?
- What are the security requirements for using such a tool in your organisation?
- How the project management methodology (Agile, waterfall) implemented in your company can determine the scheme of testing?
Answers to these questions could help you select the criteria for the automated tests programme that will suit your projects best.
Who do you want to convince to invest in the automated tests?
Regardless of your choice of the tool, bear in mind that you will not use it alone. Although convincing testers’ team to it would be easy, the managerial team can require hard evidence that this would be a good investment. It seems obvious that before meeting with them it is good to prepare data regarding estimated increase of the testing team effectiveness and enhanced bug detection. The second (and often overseen) factor is the workflow in the project – not only in testers’ team, but also between developers and business unit. If you show how the tool you selected will improve the work (i.e. thanks to the reports that business will surely appreciate, or map of the bugs which will enable for faster submission of amendments to developers) it would be perceived as a big asset.
Choosing the best tool for your team
List of requirements created by the testers’ team would be a good start; you can also consult it with developers. Apart from precise comparison of the offers from different vendors you can also take into account the following advantages:
- Was this particular tool for automated tests designed taking into account its future users? Is it intuitive?
- Can it – despite its advanced features – be launched from the browser?
- Does it enable you to edit tests and add new parts to them without recording the whole scenarios from the beginning?
- Does it have a built-in modulus enabling for minimisation of so-called flaky tests?
- Does it provide the map of the bugs, thanks to which you can identify the most prone to bugs parts of the code?
Real added value to your research would be recommendations from your colleagues as well as getting acquainted with the demo versions of the tools that you take into account. Read article about features every test automation tool should have.
Who would be using this tool? Is he competent to do it?
Members of the testers’ team differ in terms of competences and predispositions . Some of them are beginner manual testers, others – more experienced – prefer exploratory tests. Some of the automated testing tools available on the market require programming skills on different levels. Not every tester can boast of them. And even if he can, he may not have enough time to programme automated tests. Fortunately, modern tools for automatization available on the market don’t require such skills from the tester – it is good to take a look at these offers too.
Automated tests – do they pay off?
This question concerns not only the subscription fee for the tool. You should also take into account the cost of time that your employees would have to devote to learn how to use this programme. On the bright side, in your calculations you can also include the benefits such as work acceleration and increased effectiveness of your team.
Introduction of the new tool for automated tests in your company would require a lot of time and effort (i.e. devoted to comparing the offers). Although this task (on condition that it would be done properly) can translate into real improvement of testers’ work and comfort, as well as have positive impact on the overall results of the project. It is worth trying.