What is Test Automation?
Test automation is the process by which the testing processes such as unit testing and integration testing are automated, eliminating human effort and enhancing efficiency. It is the automation of the testing process, gathering test data and gaining actionable insights. In the past, processes such as development, testing, and deployment were done by teams that did not communicate well with each other.
What are the parameters for test automation?
• Release Frequency
Release frequency is a highly relevant metric in deciding the level of automation. As the frequency of release increases, automation can significantly improve the efficiency of releases. Leveraging end-to-end automation tools bring down the time taken for each release drastically.
• Availability of tools
Automation tools available in the market today significantly enhance the productivity of testing and development teams. The complexity and level of knowledge needed to feasibly leverage these tools are essential factors to consider when choosing automation tools for your use case. An effective way to do this is to build test cases using the tools you are considering for your purpose and choose the one that fits you the most.
• Product Maturity
In the case of a matured product, the testing and release process’ would be combined and any alteration to the existing process would be cumbersome. However, moving to a continuous delivery system demands a certain level of automation. While designing a new product, it is extremely important to inculcate automated testing practices and tools to ensure quick and error-free delivery.
• Data and delivery environment
The delivery environment and data are key parameters in deciding the automation tools and methodology. The teams need to have a clear idea about the strategy so that the chosen tools are apt for the requirements.
What are the several types of automated testing?
• Unit testing: Tests and verifies different functionalities. Units of code are taken separately and tested for their functionality.
• Integration testing Checks for the proper functioning of different individual units of code that are supposed to work together.
• End to End testing: Testing the code against expected real-world functionalities. End-to-end testing ensures that the application fulfils all the expectations of the targeted end-users.
• Exploratory testing: It involves testing, gaining insights, and executing changes based on these insights. Exploratory tests let teams find out errors that are not detectable in the usual test process.
What are the advantages of test automation?
• Reusability: Through multiple approaches, automation helps you test different functionalities.
• Faster feedback: Improves communication among different stakeholders and hence faster error detection and correction.
• Reduced costs: Although the initial cost to set up automated test infrastructure is on the higher side; the operational costs are significantly less resulting in a feasible ROI provided you choose the right tools as per your requirements.
• Reduced release times: Test automation brings down the time taken for each release significantly by streamlining the testing process.
• Faster error detection: Errors are detected faster making it easier for the testing team to help iron out the bugs.