Quality Engineering
min read
February 1, 2023

5 Steps to Conduct Effective Test Automation

5 Steps to Conduct Effective Test Automation
Table of contents

Organizations are constantly determining ways to improve their business and development processes to produce better products. It means speeding up deployment strategies to withstand the ever-growing market competition. However, this requires faster technology to test these products quickly and release them to the end-users. 

That is why automation testing has come to the forefront, transforming existing testing processes and speeding them up. The method reduces manual testing errors, helps detect bugs, and improves the testing efficiency of testing professionals. 

As a result, it leads to better deployment rates, high-quality code, and product efficiency. Moreover, companies can save sufficient time, resources, and money generally spent on manual testing. 

Nevertheless, successful test automation is only possible when companies follow a systematic approach. It includes choosing the correct testing framework and executing the right test cases.

Consider all the crucial steps to conduct test automation effectively. 


Key elements of a test automation strategy   

A systematic automation tactic will enhance the effectiveness of all involved test processes. Further, all professionals will be on the same page using a solid plan. Here are the essential steps to operate a test automation procedure successfully. 


Focus on fixed achievable goals

Appropriate test automation planning and execution can enhance the ultimate software quality. So, companies and professionals must determine achievable targets. It is the first step in preparing the strategy that decides the course of other testing phases. 

Besides, an automation feasibility analysis needs to be conducted here. It analyzes the test cases that can be automated according to certain factors like infrastructure, frameworks, and ROI. 

  • Time-consuming manual tests 
  • Repetitive scenarios like entering user details and logging out 
  • Batch processes and user interactions involving multiple inputs


The analysis also determines the scenarios that are not feasible for automation. The testers can gauge the time and effort needed to complete the testing. 


Choose a right tool and framework

After understanding the desired testing outcomes, the way ahead is to determine the testing approach. For this, testers need to figure out the appropriate framework for the project. Make sure the tools and framework can support the testing needs of your application and are compatible with your technology stack. Choose a framework that can be easily maintained and scaled over time.


An Automation Testing Pyramid is beneficial to simplify the selection process. The technique helps professionals understand the essential tests and their order of execution relevant to the scenario.

Further, the pyramid can indicate the frequency of the tests and the best approaches to execute them. Testers can use the structure to understand the tests to run as per the scenario or use case.

For example, they can identify the test execution order while testing an application that accepts user input and offers an output. 


Create effective test scripts

The next phase of the strategy will involve creating test scripts and test cases. Test scripts are programs written to test a specific functionality of an application. On the other hand, test cases are documents containing the expected outcomes, data values, and specified conditions for automation testing.  

Develop automation test scripts that are clear, concise, and cover all the necessary test scenarios.

Write test scripts that are reusable, maintainable, and independent of each other. Create data-driven tests to test multiple scenarios with minimal code changes. Ensure the test scripts cover both positive and negative scenarios.


Execution

Run the scripts to test the application and analyze the results. Make sure the test environment is set up correctly, and the scripts are running without any errors.

Integrate the automation into the continuous integration (CI) pipeline to enable continuous testing. Analyze the test results and identify any defects or issues. Debug the scripts and update them as needed.


Maintenance

Regularly maintain the automation suite to ensure it is up-to-date with the latest application changes. Continuously improve the test automation effort by gathering feedback from the team and stakeholders and making necessary changes to the automation suite.

Automation maintenance activity includes:

  • Enhancing the expectation handling and error logging mechanism.
  • Making the framework more robust and scalable.
  • Adding new functionalities in the framework to handle more use cases and test cases.
  • Code refactoring.


Summing up

The automation testing market size might grow at 14.2% CAGR from 2021-26. So, it is clear that many organizations will opt for this testing technology in the future to improve their services. Following an automation testing strategy will be vital in implementing the processes effectively.

Conducting meetings and organizational discussions will be necessary before implementing the testing strategy. All steps and intricate details should be discussed among the involved professionals. Transparent communication might help executives understand and implement the techniques.

Moreover, senior professionals can also obtain feedback from testers to identify areas of improvement. Continuous monitoring and optimization of strategies can help acquire better ROI from automated testing.

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