Automation Testing Benefits and Why Your Business Should Use It
As businesses continue to shift towards digitalization, software testing has become increasingly important for ensuring the quality and reliability of software applications. Automation testing, in particular, has emerged as a critical tool for organizations looking to accelerate their software delivery cycles while reducing costs and improving overall efficiency. With automation testing, businesses can achieve faster time-to-market, enhanced test coverage, reduced costs, and increased ROI.
In this article, we'll explore the benefits of automation testing in more detail and why your business should consider adopting it as part of your software testing strategy.
Our product was build without a single bug in beta-version….said no Product Owner ever. The truth is – no matter how professional and experienced your developers are, the nasty bugs still creep inside even the neatest software products.
Up to 50% of mobile users report that they’ll immediately delete an app if they spot a single bug. The stats for web products are nearly the same. That’s why software testing and quality assurance come as an integral part of the overall web development process.
In this context, automated testing has emerged as a critical tool for organizations seeking to deliver top-notch software quickly and efficiently. A recently commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting found that automation can speed up the delivery of applications up to four times faster than traditional methods, all while reducing errors and risk and increasing overall value.
Automated testing not only improves software quality and reliability but also saves time, reduces costs, enhances test coverage, and increases team productivity and morale. These advantages are particularly important in today’s competitive business landscape, where customers demand constant innovation, high-quality products, and seamless user experiences.
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What are the benefits of automation testing?
Our chosen benefits are both comprehensive and precise enough to provide clear and actionable insights into the most significant benefits of automation testing. This helps to understand how automation testing can assist organizations in achieving their objectives and improving their processes in practical ways.
According to a recent survey conducted by Worksoft, 4 out of 5 surveyed companies reported the tangible benefits of automation testing in multiple areas (86%), with the majority of respondents specifically highlighting 3 to 6 areas with the highest impact. These benefits can be summed up to the following:
Improved software quality and reliability
Automated testing can quickly and accurately test software, catching errors and bugs that may be missed during manual testing. This can lead to higher quality software that is less likely to experience crashes, errors, or other issues that can negatively impact user experience.
Improved software quality and reliability is critical for businesses that rely on software to provide products or services to customers. A bug or error in software can cause significant user frustration and damage a company’s reputation. By using automated testing to catch bugs and errors early, businesses can improve the reliability of their software and prevent costly issues down the line.
For example, in 2016, Facebook found a critical bug in their iOS app that was causing it to crash. The bug affected millions of users and was causing significant frustration. Thanks to automated testing, Facebook was able to catch the bug early and release a fix quickly, improving the reliability of their app and preventing further user frustration. This is just one example of how automated testing can help businesses improve the quality and reliability of their software.
By automating testing processes, companies can streamline the software development life cycle and reduce the time it takes to release products to market. This is particularly important in today’s fast-paced business environment, where companies are under pressure to release new products and features quickly to remain competitive.
One example of a company that has benefited from faster time-to-market through automation testing is Amazon. The company’s web services division, AWS, uses automated testing extensively to accelerate its software release process. By automating its testing processes, AWS has been able to reduce the time it takes to release new features and updates from weeks to just days, allowing the company to stay ahead of the competition and meet the needs of its customers more quickly.
Reduced costs and increased ROI
Automating testing processes can help organizations save money by reducing the time and resources required for testing. Automated testing can handle repetitive testing tasks, such as regression testing, freeing up testers to focus on more complex testing issues. This can result in higher quality software that is better suited to the needs of customers while also reducing the risk of delays and cost overruns.
Siemens Healthineers, a leading medical technology company, was able to reduce the time and cost of software testing by 50% by implementing automated testing. This allowed them to redirect resources towards other critical areas of software development and maintenance, ultimately leading to increased ROI.
In addition, automation testing can help businesses increase their ROI by improving the efficiency of the software development process. By identifying and fixing bugs quickly, automation testing can reduce the amount of time and resources required for software development. This can help businesses to release software updates more frequently, improving customer satisfaction and increasing revenue.
Better productivity of the development team
Automation testing has revolutionized the software testing industry by significantly improving the accuracy and efficiency of testing procedures. With automation testing, repetitive tasks are automated, freeing up team members to focus on more complex and challenging tasks. This means that team members can dedicate more time to planning, strategizing, and problem-solving, resulting in higher-quality testing outcomes.
Automation testing also helps to eliminate human error, which is a common issue in manual testing. This is because automated tests are run consistently, without the potential for human error, ensuring that test results are accurate and reliable. As a result, team members can trust the test results and make informed decisions based on them, without wasting time and resources double-checking the results.
Moreover, automation testing enables teams to run tests on multiple platforms, devices, and browsers simultaneously. This significantly reduces the time and effort required to test software on different platforms, making it easier for teams to deliver high-quality software in a timely manner.
Software tests should be scheduled regularly during the development cycles to secure quality. Obviously, more complex products e.g. custom CRM systems, EMR/EHR systems or any enterprise web application project require more complex testing, especially if you choose to support multiple operating systems and software configurations.
After each manipulation with the source code, you need to run software tests. Repeating these tests manually is costly and time-consuming. One of the core benefits of test automation is that you need to create a set of test cases once and afterwards conduct them 24/7 even when the testing team is out of the office. Automated testing cuts down the time to run repetitive tests from days to just a few hours. After all less time spent = smaller development bill to foot. Additionally, you don’t need to keep a dedicated manual testing team to handle QA. One automated testing engineer can have you covered at all times.
Seamless testing integration with CI/CD
Furthermore, automation testing enables teams to automate the entire delivery process by creating automated tests for each stage of the pipeline, from unit testing to integration testing to acceptance testing. This ensures that each stage of the pipeline is validated before the software product moves on to the next stage. It helps to catch defects earlier in the development cycle, reducing the overall cost of fixing defects and improving software quality.
Once the automated tests are created, they can be triggered automatically when new code is committed to the repository. This ensures that any potential issues are caught early in the development process, making it easier to fix and reducing the risk of software defects in the final product.
Spotify, the popular music streaming service, uses automation testing to achieve continuous integration and delivery. The company’s development team uses a testing framework called “Dockerized Jenkins Pipeline” to automate the testing process. This framework enables developers to push their code changes to the main branch multiple times a day without worrying about breaking the build. Once the code is pushed, the automated testing suite runs a battery of tests on the new code changes to ensure that they integrate smoothly with the existing codebase.
This approach has helped Spotify to significantly reduce the time it takes to release new features and updates to customers. Previously, the company’s release cycle took up to two weeks. However, with automation testing and continuous integration and delivery, the release cycle has been shortened to just a few hours.
Enhanced test coverage
Automated testing enables businesses to test large volumes of data and code, which is beyond the capacity of manual testing. This increased testing capacity leads to a more comprehensive and reliable test coverage that can detect and prevent defects that could negatively impact the user experience. Automation testing ensures that all functionalities, including new features, are tested thoroughly before being released into the market. Automated testing is not prone to human error, ensuring that test coverage is consistent across all testing environments.
Enhanced test coverage also allows businesses to test their applications across different platforms and devices, ensuring that their software works seamlessly across all platforms. Automated testing tools provide the ability to test applications on multiple devices and platforms simultaneously, saving businesses time and effort. This enhanced test coverage means that businesses can catch defects early on in the software development process and address them before they cause any significant issues or delays.
For example, Google uses automated testing to thoroughly test their Chrome browser across a range of devices and operating systems, ensuring that it functions as intended in all environments. This has helped Google maintain a high level of software quality and user satisfaction.
Automated testing increases the depth and scope of tests to spot even the smallest imperfections. Running lengthy tests is hard to schedule manually as they cannot be left unattended or require large amount of human resources.
One the definite pros of automation testing is that they allow to dig deeper into the applications core and efficiently review data tables, memory and file contents and internal program states to determine if the product is behaving as expected. In fact, you can schedule to run simultaneous tests on multiple computers with different configurations or cross-text a web and native-mobile app solution. Additionally, you can create powerful test cases to emulate the activity of hundreds or thousands of virtual users, who are interacting with your network and application.
8 types of software testing that should be automated
So, what can you automate within your testing framework?
As already mentioned, the advantages of automation testing are that you can ensure large coverage in numerous software development areas and high penetration without expanding your team. In general, automation can be applied to nearly any type of software testing. Based on our experience, however, we’ve identified the next core areas worth automating in the first place.
Even a tiny tweak in your software code can potentially cause unexpected consequences. Regression testing is aimed at identifying code incompatibilities by testing existing software applications to ensure that changes or additions haven’t broken any existing functionality. The primary aim is catch bugs, which might have accidentally slipped through into the new release and stay 100% sure that all the earlier bugs were fixed.
The major benefits of automated regression testing are that your team can re-run testing scenarios over and over again without any hassle to ensure that the new changes made did not result into a regression, or caused previously functional components to fail.
Here’s what’s included in automated regression testing toolkit:
- QA Wizard Pro
Unit tests assume testing a unit – the smallest part of code that can be logically isolated within a system. For most programming languages – that is a function, a subroutine, a method or a property.
Unit testing method is part of the Test Driven Development (TDD) approach, which assumes that each programmer creates a test prior to any production code, and afterwards writes the code that will make the test pass. This practice encourages developers to write cleaner code based on the initial assurance obtained after the initial test and refactoring the original code.
Best tools to use are:
Load and performance testing
Load and performance tests are the cherry on top of all the previous testing you did. When your web application is almost complete, that’s the go-to way to identify whether your product will handle the actual demands on an army of users.
The definitive advantages of automated testing, in this case, are the multiple load and performance tests you can run simultaneously from different devices. You can emulate as many users as possible to ensure the final product is absolutely stable and can handle whatever is coming for it!
At Romexsoft, high-load applications are our particular specialty and we use the following automated tools to reach the top results:
In a nutshell, functional testing deals with your application relations between the users and the rest of the system. This approach tests only what the application does as a whole opposed to the unit tests that cover only what certain application segment does and how it does that.
In other words – if you want your app to function well, you need to test every single operation it was designed to perform. And here are the good tools for that:
- Selenium WebDriver
GUI functional testing
To make sure your app’s design is not only attractive, but also functional and does everything up to your specifications e.g. button 1 powers up feature A, you should run a few respective test cases.
The issue with GUI testing is that even seemingly small applications have multiple operations that need to be tested. For instance, a simple desktop application like Microsoft WordPad has 325 possible GUI operations. More complicated web apps can feature between 1.000-5.000+ variations. Automated UI testing in this case is lifesaving as the whole process may take weeks for a manual team. The go-to tools are:
- Selenium WebDriver
Smoke testing technique has been picked up from hardware testing best practices, which checks if there’s smoke from the hardware component when the power is suddenly off.
Similarly, in software testing context, this technique encourages testing the basic functionality of each build. If the test fails, the entire build is declared unstable and is no longer tested until it passes the smoke test.
Smoke tests are often an integral part of BDD (Behavior-Driven Development) environment as they allow easily tracing back to the exact kind of behavior we want to see within an app. This approach to testing saves you ton of time and efforts by uncovering early obvious bugs.
The following tools are perfect for scheduling such tests:
- Selenium WebDriver
Acceptance testing is commonly used in BDD to verify that the set requirement (story) is complete. As customer, that’s your way to ensure that no original requirements have been changed during the project scope and everything was done as planned. These kind of tests are useful for identifying some of the problems previous unit or integration tests might have omitted and offer an excellent overview of how “complete” is your product.
The tools worth using for automated acceptance testing are:
The users’ smartphones are already crammed with dozens of apps. Your product doesn’t stand a chance unless it works perfectly. Automated mobile testing can save you heaps of times and budgets on hiring a dedicated QA team. Android devices in all sorts of screen sizes, and both iOS and Android users often forget to update the software to the latest version, meaning higher risks of incompatibilities.
So why you should use automated testing, after all? In three lines:
- To save money
- To save time and human resources
- To receive a better end product
How to determine the need of automation testing for your project
Not every project or business can benefit from automation testing equally. That is why understanding the need for automation testing in your particular project is crucial. By determining whether your project can benefit from automation testing, you can ensure that your resources and efforts are directed to the areas that will provide the most value. Further, we’ll explore the key factors to consider when defining the need for automation testing in your project.
Measure the business criticality
The business criticality of the software project is the key factor that determines the need for automation testing. Business-critical applications that have a direct impact on the company’s revenue or reputation require thorough testing to ensure that they are functioning correctly.
So how to understand the business criticality of automation testing for your project. You need to consider the impact of the software on your business operations and revenue. Here are some factors to consider:
- Impact on revenue: If the software is a core part of your business operations, any issues or downtime can result in revenue loss. In such cases, it is critical to ensure that the software is tested thoroughly to minimize the risk of failure.
- Impact on customer experience: If the software is customer-facing, any issues can result in a poor customer experience, leading to customer churn and negative reviews. Automated testing can help to identify and fix issues before they impact customers.
- Compliance requirements: If the software is subject to compliance requirements, such as HIPAA or PCI-DSS, it is critical to ensure that it is thoroughly tested to comply with regulations. Automated testing can help to ensure compliance while minimizing the risk of human error.
- Time-to-market: If the software is time-sensitive, such as a new product launch or a critical business process, automated testing can help to speed up the testing process and ensure that the software is launched on time.
Assess the size of the project
The larger your project, the more testing you’ll need to do, and the more likely you are to benefit from automation testing. Automated tests can be run quickly and easily across multiple environments, making it easier to manage testing across large-scale projects.
Weight the time constraints
If your project has tight deadlines, automation testing can help you deliver high-quality software on time. Automated tests can be run overnight or during non-business hours, allowing you to maximize testing efficiency and minimize time-to-market.
Evaluate the budget and resources
While automation testing can be a significant upfront investment, it can save money in the long run by reducing the need for manual testing and minimizing the risk of defects in production. Evaluate your budget and consider the long-term ROI of automation testing.
Evaluate the complexity of testing
The more complex your testing requirements, the more likely you are to benefit from automation testing. Manual testing can be prone to errors, and it can be difficult to ensure that all test cases have been covered. Automation testing can help ensure comprehensive and accurate testing, especially for complex scenarios.
Consider the frequency of testing
If your project requires frequent testing, it’s a clear indication that you could benefit from automation testing. Automated tests can be run repeatedly without the need for human intervention, which can save a lot of time and effort.
While shifting towards automated software testing in-house may cost a lot as you’ll need to purchase the tools, setup environment and hire respective professionals to do the job, Romexsoft team offers affordable automated testing services and quality assurance testing services both as part of our custom software development package and as a stand-alone service.
How software development vendors can help with automation testing
When seeking automation testing services for your software solution, partnering with a software development vendor can bring significant business value. Here’s how their expertise and assistance can benefit your organization:
Assessment and planning
Experienced software development vendors leverage their expertise in assessment and planning of the automation testing to ensure that the essential idea of the implementation of automated QA aligns with the client’s business goals, optimizes resources, mitigates risks, and delivers measurable value. These vendors’ insights and recommendations can help you make informed decisions about the scope and approach of automation testing.
Assessment and planning play a crucial role in automation testing as they lay the foundation for a successful implementation. Experienced software development vendors (with a real proven expertise) can bring valuable leverage to their client’s business in this field through the following ways:
In-depth project analysis
Software development vendors conduct a thorough analysis of the client’s project requirements, objectives, and existing testing processes. They assess the suitability of automation testing, considering factors such as project complexity, size, and expected benefits. This analysis helps in understanding the unique needs and challenges of the client’s business, enabling the vendor to provide tailored solutions.
Based on the project analysis, software development vendors evaluate the feasibility of automation testing for the client’s specific software solution. They consider various aspects, such as the nature of the application, test case complexity, and potential ROI. This evaluation helps the client make informed decisions regarding the extent to which automation testing should be implemented and the expected outcomes.
Automation testing strategy
Leveraging their experience and expertise, software development vendors develop a customized automation testing strategy for the client’s project. This strategy outlines the objectives, methodologies, and timelines for automation testing, aligning them with the client’s overall development and release cycles. The vendor’s insights ensure that the automation approach is efficient, cost-effective, and targeted to deliver maximum benefits.
Resource planning and allocation
During the assessment and planning phase, software development vendors identify the necessary resources and skill sets required for successful automation testing. They assist the client in determining the right team composition, including automation engineers, domain experts, and testing specialists. This ensures that the client has the right personnel in place to execute the automation testing strategy effectively.
Experienced software development vendors proactively identify potential risks and challenges associated with automation testing. They assess the impact of these risks on the project and develop mitigation strategies to minimize their effects. By having a thorough understanding of the risks involved, the vendor can guide the client in implementing necessary safeguards and establishing contingency plans.
Cost and time optimization
Through effective assessment and planning, software development vendors help optimize the cost and time involved in automation testing. They identify opportunities for reusing existing test cases, eliminating redundant efforts, and streamlining the overall testing process. By reducing manual testing efforts and accelerating test execution, the vendor enables the client to achieve significant time and cost savings.
Tool selection and setup
Selecting the right automation testing tools is crucial for success. Software development vendors can guide you in choosing tools that align with your project requirements, scalability needs, and budget. Their expertise in tool setup and configuration ensures a seamless integration with your existing systems, reducing implementation complexities and accelerating the adoption of automation testing.
Test script development stage
Developing robust and maintainable test scripts is pivotal for efficient automation testing. Software development vendors excel in creating high-quality test scripts that cover diverse test scenarios specific to your software solution. By leveraging their expertise, you can achieve comprehensive test coverage, early detection of defects, and reliable validation of your software’s functionality, enhancing its overall quality.
Test execution and reporting
Software development vendors proficiently execute automated test scripts, monitor test results, and provide comprehensive reports. Their thorough analysis helps identify potential issues and bottlenecks, enabling you to take timely corrective actions. With their insightful reporting, you gain valuable visibility into the quality and stability of your software solution, facilitating data-driven decision-making and efficient issue resolution.
Maintenance and support
Automation testing requires continuous maintenance and support to adapt to evolving software requirements. Software development vendors offer ongoing support, ensuring that your automation testing framework remains up-to-date and aligned with the changing needs of your software solution. Their prompt assistance and regular updates contribute to seamless testing operations, reducing downtime and improving overall efficiency.
Automation testing benefits FAQ
AWS automation testing enhances software quality and reliability by identifying errors and bugs that might be missed during manual testing. It also accelerates the delivery of software by streamlining the development life cycle. In addition, it can reduce costs and increase ROI by taking over repetitive testing tasks, freeing up testers to focus on more complex issues. It also boosts the productivity of the development team by automating repetitive tasks and minimizing human error.
In today's fast-paced and competitive software development landscape, automation testing is essential. It allows for more efficient use of resources, as it can handle repetitive tasks and free up human testers to focus on more complex and creative aspects of testing. Automation testing also improves the reliability and quality of software by catching errors and bugs that might be missed during manual testing. Furthermore, it can significantly speed up the software development life cycle, enabling faster delivery of products to market.
Automation testing can quickly and accurately test software, catching errors and bugs that may be missed during manual testing. This can lead to higher quality software that is less likely to experience crashes, errors, or other issues that can negatively impact user experience. Additionally, automation testing can handle repetitive testing tasks, such as regression testing, freeing up testers to focus on more complex testing issues. This can result in higher quality software that is better suited to the needs of customers while also reducing the risk of delays and cost overruns.
A company should consider using automation testing when the size of the project is large, the project has tight deadlines, the testing requirements are complex, or the project requires frequent testing. Automated tests can be run quickly and easily across multiple environments, making it easier to manage testing across large-scale projects. Furthermore, if the software is time-sensitive, automated testing can help to speed up the testing process and ensure that the software is launched on time.