Tips To Achieve Successful Test Automation: Best Automation Practices


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Automation testing process and automation practices

The automation testing process helps to verify the success of a software product. If your software has issues, then the people will not buy it or use it for long. .Though the process of testing helps to find defects and resolve bugs, it is time-consuming. It is expensive, repetitive, and subjected to human errors. So, quality assurance teams can make use of software tools. These software tools help to run repetitive and data-intensive tests. Automated testing helps these teams to improve software quality and make most of their limited resources. Test automation tools help the team to test the codes in a faster way. It also helps to improve test accuracy and frees up the testers so that they can focus on more manual tasks that require human skills. You can use the following tips to ensure that your software testing is successful and you get the maximum return on investment.

Decide the test cases to automate

It is practically impossible to automate all testing. So, the testers should determine various test cases that can be automated first. The benefit of automated testing depends on the number of times a given test can be repeated. Tests that are performed fewer times are better for manual testing. Whereas, various test cases run frequently and acquire large amounts of data to perform similar actions. These test cases should be automated.

You can automate the following tests to get the maximum benefits of automation practices-

  1. Tests that can cause human error.
  2. Tests that are impossible to be performed manually.
  3. Tests that require great efforts and time when done manually.
  4. Tests that run on different hardware or software configurations.

To perfectly learn automation testing, you require careful planning and design work. You can start by creating an automation plan. This helps you to identify the set of tests which should be automated initially. It also serves as a guide for future tests. First of all, define your goal of automated testing and choose the types of tests to automate. After choosing the goal and the type of tests to automate, you should decide what functions the automated tests will perform. You should not create the test steps or test various features of the application’s behavior at one time. This is because complex automated tests are difficult to edit and debug. So, it is best to divide your tests into several smaller tests. It makes the process manageable and helps you to share test code, test data, and processes. By adding smaller tests, you will receive more opportunities to update your automated tests. You should also try to keep your tests small and focused on a single objective.  For example, create separate tests for read-only tests. This step helps you to use the particular test repeatedly and thus, saves your time.

Test early end test often

To receive the maximum benefit of automated testing, you should start testing as early as possible and run it as often as needed. The earlier you integrate the testing procedure in the life cycle of the project, the better and the more you test. In this way, you can find more bugs and resolve them.

You can implement the automated unit testing on Day One and then, you can gradually build your automated test suite. The bugs which are detected earlier in the testing process are cheaper to fix than those discovered later in the production or development processes. Thus, testing using automated tools help to make the testing process easier.

Select the appropriate automated testing tool

Selecting the right automation practices and the testing tool is essential for test automation. There are a lot of automated testing tools out there in the market. So, it is crucial to select an automated testing tool that suits your overall requirements.

You should consider the following points when selecting an automated testing tool-

  1. The testers should feature-rich and easy to create automated tests. Your testing tool should support record and playback test creation along with the manual creation of automated tests. It should also include features for implementing checkpoints. These checkpoints help to verify databases, values, and key functionality of your application.
  2. The testing tool should support platforms and technology. You should consider the answers to several questions. Will you test the web applications in the future? Do you need support for testing mobile applications? Do you work with Android, iOS, or both operating systems?
  3. The tools should help to create automated tests that are reusable and resistant to the modifications in the apps’ UI.

Divide your automated testing efforts

The creation of different tests depends upon the QA engineers’ skill levels and experience. So, you should recognize the level of experience and the skills of each team member. This will help you in dividing the automated testing efforts according to the capabilities of different members. 

Let us assume, you want to write automated test scripts for testing. This requires expert knowledge of scripting languages. To perform these tasks, you should hire quality assurance engineers. These people have knowledge of scripting languages and various automated testing tools. Hence, they can perform the task more efficiently.

Create quality test data

Good test-data facilitates data-driven testing. The data can be read from the database or other data sources like Excel Sheets, database tables, text, or XML files.  To create quality test data, you should use a good automated testing tool. This tool understands the content of the data files. It iterates over the contents of the automated test.  You can also make your automated tests reusable and easier to maintain by using external data. In this way, you can easily extend the data files with new data. This is done even without editing the actual automated test.

Automation practices: summing up

The automation testing process is important for several reasons. By using the testing best practices in your automated testing, you can ensure that testing is successful and helps you to get the maximum return on investment (ROI). Testing using automated tools helps to improve the software quality and reduce the development cycles. It also helps the management to avoid performing repetitive and data-intensive tasks, which are prone to human errors.

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