Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Andy Thurai

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Microservices Expo, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo

@DevOpsSummit: Article

DevOps and Test Automation | @DevOpsSummit #DevOps #Microservices

Some of the common hurdles testers face when trying to automate the testing life cycle, and ways around them

Test automation is arguably the most important innovation to the process of QA testing in software development. The ability to automate regression testing and other repetitive test cases can significantly reduce the overall production time for even the most complex solutions. As software continues to be developed for new platforms - including mobile devices and the diverse array of endpoints that will be created during the rise of the Internet of Things - automation integration will have a huge hand to play delivering reliable, multifunctional products that end users want and need.

Of course, test automation is not without its challenges. Let's take a look at some of the common hurdles testers face when trying to automate the testing life cycle, and ways around them.

Interoperability
One of the biggest challenges facing software vendors across the board is interoperability. The diverse array of devices, operating systems and software development kits often result in integration issues that can negatively impact the final product. The same can be said for automation integration. If a testing management tool is incompatible with a software development tool, or has clunky integration, developers and testers alike with struggle through each phase of the process. Unfortunately, this is a challenge that too many software vendors have written off as something that comes with the territory.

In truth, interoperability issues are not inevitable. There are a variety test management tools on the market that provide seamless integration with the most commonly used software development tools - for example, JIRA test management tools. As more development teams transition to DevOps, many will also shift from traditional SDKs to agile software development tools such as JIRA. The best way to accommodate fluid collaboration between DevOps teams and testers is to seek out an automation testing tool that is truly integrated with the best software development technology on the market. This will preemptively solve any problems that may arise as a result of interoperability, while enabling agile testing methodologies.

A blank drawing board is never a good thing when it comes to test management strategies.

Strategy and organization
Even with the adoption of DevOps culture, there is some still some dissonance among test management teams regarding the best way to organize and execute certain tests. While no two solutions are identical - warranting variation in the specific approach to the testing life cycle - testers and developers within a team must agree on test management strategies that ultimately serves the software. This means, for instance, knowing at what point to begin regression testing, and whether or not certain tests should be run manually first.

One way to abate these issues is to focus on what the solution truly needs, rather than be overly rigid in terms of traditional methodology. Test managers must use all the tools available to them, and not necessarily rely too heavily on one method of testing. For example, simple black-and-white tests should always be automated. Exploratory tests, on the other hand, should be manual, as they require a level of creativity and human foresight that a machine simply cannot supply - at least not yet. As for regression testing, it's always a good idea to ensure that any automated tests that directly impact the user experience are very carefully integrated. Simpler unit tests that focus more on whether or not the solution is executing properly can typically be automated from the get-go. But regression tests that ensure deep functionality for the user experience - typically through the use of key test metrics - should be manually stepped through.

Some degree of manual testing will almost always be needed to complement automation integration when it comes to creating a rich user experience. Machines are smart, but they're not necessarily apt at determining what is intuitive. This requires a more human touch.

Similarly, according to TechTarget contributor Gerie Owen, manual testing is heavily relied upon in the making of very young software that is still trying to pin down its value proposition. This can lead to instability between phases of development, demanding a level of variation in test cases and test metrics that automation integration cannot provide.

Challenges to test automation will always arise. But as long development and QA teams are flexible - one might say agile - throughout the testing life cycle, they will be able to get the most out of automation integration time and again.

More Stories By Sanjay Zalavadia

As the VP of Client Service for Zephyr, Sanjay Zalavadia brings over 15 years of leadership experience in IT and Technical Support Services. Throughout his career, Sanjay has successfully established and grown premier IT and Support Services teams across multiple geographies for both large and small companies.

Most recently, he was Associate Vice President at Patni Computers (NYSE: PTI) responsible for the Telecoms IT Managed Services Practice where he established IT Operations teams supporting Virgin Mobile, ESPN Mobile, Disney Mobile and Carphone Warehouse. Prior to this Sanjay was responsible for Global Technical Support at Bay Networks, a leading routing and switching vendor, which was acquired by Nortel. He has also held management positions in Support Service organizations at start-up Silicon Valley Networks, a vendor of Test Management software, and SynOptics.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


IoT & Smart Cities Stories
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that All in Mobile, a mobile app development company from Poland, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. All In Mobile is a mobile app development company from Poland. Since 2014, they maintain passion for developing mobile applications for enterprises and startups worldwide.
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICOHOLDER named "Media Sponsor" of Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO. ICOHOLDER gives detailed information and help the community to invest in the trusty projects. Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO has opened its Call for Papers. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPOalso offers sp...
Headquartered in Plainsboro, NJ, Synametrics Technologies has provided IT professionals and computer systems developers since 1997. Based on the success of their initial product offerings (WinSQL and DeltaCopy), the company continues to create and hone innovative products that help its customers get more from their computer applications, databases and infrastructure. To date, over one million users around the world have chosen Synametrics solutions to help power their accelerated business or per...
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place November 12-13 in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd international CloudEXPO | first international DXWorldEXPO and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time t...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...
Charles Araujo is an industry analyst, internationally recognized authority on the Digital Enterprise and author of The Quantum Age of IT: Why Everything You Know About IT is About to Change. As Principal Analyst with Intellyx, he writes, speaks and advises organizations on how to navigate through this time of disruption. He is also the founder of The Institute for Digital Transformation and a sought after keynote speaker. He has been a regular contributor to both InformationWeek and CIO Insight...
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...