Nowadays, production systems are more agile than ever. Market demand and development cycles are becoming increasingly shorter. It is therefore important for companies to have a quality system in place that allows for shorter cycles while still maintaining excellence..
This is where Quality Assurance (QA) comes into play. It is a process-based (rather than product-based) approach to quality and it aims to undertake whatever measures are necessary to ensure that the end result meets quality requirements while ensuring the repeatability of the process.
QA has a series of methodologies, tools and mechanisms in place to ensure the quality of both the product and the process. When it comes to software development, a fundamental element of the process is testing. Automating the testing process can therefore be a way to reduce the go-to-market time.
But what exactly is automated testing?
What is automated testing?
Automated testing is simply the application of automation to the testing process. It is not always possible to meet deadlines by testing manually, which is why automation is necessary in order to maximise the agility of the process and reduce software release times.
At Centum we are experts in QA and in this type of process, which we carry out according to the following stages:
Steps to implement an automatic testing system.
Steps for implementing an automatic testing system.
Analysing and defining the requirements is fundamental for the development of good automation. Thus, in this initial phase, the current (manual) processes will be documented as well as possible to define the requirements model; how the manual tests are carried out, how the automatic process should work, etc.
All the information obtained from both the documentation and the person in charge of managing it will define the framework on which to start developing the testing automation. From this phase, the test plan will then be drawn up.
Creation of the test plan
Based on both the existing test plan and the information obtained in the previous phase, the new test plan is created. This test plan must define at machine level how the tests will be carried out, so an important aspect at this point is to define the parameters that will guide the testing.
These parameters or KPIs must be objective, measurable and relevant to the test. In other words, they must provide relevant results but at the same time be viable for automation. Test cases using these steps will be created. During the design phase, the necessary input data is also specified so that the defined test cases can be carried out (with successful outcomes or not).
Conversion of the test plan into automatable KPIs
As highlighted earlier, it is essential to define good KPIs that are suitable for the tests, but they should also be appropriate for the optimisation process (objective and measurable automatically). The aim is for the tests to find any possible defects in the software in the shortest possible time and in a way that optimises the use of resources.
Creation of scripts
In this phase, work is carried out on the development of the tests in terms of looking at possible cases and scenarios, as well as developing the scripts that will be employed in the testing process.
Continual process of test execution and script adjustment
In this phase, the previously designed tests will be carried out according to the established processes. An important part of this phase is also the detection of anomalous situations that have not previously been considered.
When the objective result of a test is not as expected, it will be reported so that the development team are made aware of the error and the appropriate modifications can be made. Continual communication between team members will ensure that all the necessary additional tests are carried out in order to correct the defects until the desired result is achieved.
Automated testing report and evidence gathering
Once the testing is complete, a report is generated with all the relevant information, results and conclusions regarding the process.
Integration with bug-tracking systems
The final step in the automation process is for the new testing plan to be integrated with bug- tracking systems to ensure quality in the software development process, detecting any defects that may appear.
Advantages of implementing an automatic testing system
The main aim of automated testing processes is to shorten the time required for these processes; maintaining a high level of quality but allowing for shorter development times. This is its main advantage, but it is not the only one.
Here are some of the key advantages that your organisation can benefit from by using automated testing:
Shortened testing times
From 15 days to just a few hours, allowing you to test the whole system every day. This will make your organisation more productive, efficient and agile in terms of product development, releases, user feedback, etc.
Optimisation of costs
Reduced testing time also translates into reduced costs, allowing for more comprehensive testing within the budget. This is especially significant now that testing automation processes are becoming more advanced. The manpower required will also be optimised, contributing to the organisation’s cost reduction.
The system allows for the detection and resolution of any faults before the customer finds them, making it an excellent monitoring system that optimises the technical reliability of the processes and the operation of the equipment.
Deadline reduction, cost optimisation, quality improvement… all of this translates into the overall benefit of your company being in a much better position within a very competitive industry sector.