What Is Software Automation Testing and Why Is It Worth The investment?

In December 2017, iOS 11 suffered a technical glitch that triggered at 12:15 AM. A bug that caused iPhone with third party apps installed to send recurring notifications like reminders on health apps, and caused the iPhone to reboot constantly. Apple then released a software update iOS 11.2 which had this bug fixed and other features as well.

In September 2017, the software system supplier to Air France, Lufthansa, and British Airways witnessed a dreadful technical glitch in their software systems. The check-in system of the airlines was down for 15 to 20 minutes during the holiday time and also experienced a power failure. This led to an absolute mayhem for the airlines with several angry passengers filing complaints and hundreds of flights being cancelled. The airline brands were impacted negatively leading a huge loss in profit.

The WannaCry ransomware attack in 2017 is said to have occurred because of vulnerabilities found in the Microsoft OS that was installed on millions of systems across the globe. A small bug in a software can create a big fiasco. 

Technical glitches in the software, breakdown of software systems and data breach incidents are a serious threat to the brand value of a business. These recent glitches and detrimental software failure are lessons to be learnt by top brands for taking a move towards building a robust automated software testing strategy that will keep the systems and applications running despite challenges. The compelling need for automated software testing is on the rise and is stronger than ever before.

According to a recent report by ResearchandMarkets.com, the global automation testing market is anticipated to grow from 8.52 billion USD in 2018 to 19.27 billion USD by 2023 , growing at a CAGR of 17.7% from 2018 -2023. The automated software testing market is likely to witness tremendous growth because of digital transformation across the world. Automated software testing is all the rage and so is the need for organisations to implement it.

What Is Software Automation Testing?

A testing process in which automation tools run pre-scripted tests on a software before it can be deployed into production.

Manual software testing requires physical effort and time to make sure that the software functions as it is expected to. This also requires manual testers to keep a track of their findings which is a time consuming process. Unlike manual testing where test cases are executed by a human, in automation software testing test cases are executed with the help of tools, scripts, and other automation software’s.

Software automation testing does not eliminate the need of manual testing altogether but it reduces number of test cases to be run manually. The goal of software automation testing is to reduce the testing effort to as minimal as possible using scripts. Automation tools can execute tests, report results and compare them with earlier test results. Automation testing with the tools can be performed repeatedly during any time of the day. However, in software automation testing minimal time is required for exploratory testing and more time is required to maintain the test scripts which increases the overall test coverage. The process followed to implement automation testing for a software is often referred to as a "Test Automation Framework". Automated Software Testing works well in case of large software projects that require testing same functionalities over and over again and also for projects which have already undergone one phase of manual testing initially.

What Kind Of Test Cases Are Suitable For Automated Software Testing?

  • Test cases that require repeated execution.
  • High-risk business critical functionality test cases.
  • Test cases that difficult to be executed manually and are time consuming.

Why software automation testing is worth the investment for every organization?

Software Automation Testing Reduces Time

If an organization implements automation testing for project, there’s less to think about and less to remember for testing professionals i.e. they require smaller time investment. In automation testing, developers and testers just have to react if the tests failed for some reason.

Software Automation Testing Increases Productivity of Developers

If a software developer has to remember to run tests, they need to dedicate time apart from development for executing those test cases. If test cases are automated as a part of the build process then the developers can continue developing the project, unless any test fails. Developers are likely to get feedback faster and reduce the risk of code break as the development progresses from one build to the next. Software automation testing not just eases the process of finding bugs but also reduces the cost of fixing them.

Software Automation Testing Increases Predictability

Whenever a process is executed the same way each and every time, the outcome of the execution must be predictable. The tests can validate only what they have been programmed to validate. The test cases are also as good as the developer who wrote them and the peer who reviewed them. One should fall into the trap of false assumption that if there test cases, everything will be fine. Having said that, when test cases are automated and the source code is of a high standard, the predictability of the outcome increases i.e. the knowledge about the state of the functioning code in the application.