With software systems of all kinds growing more complex by the day, companies are turning to test automation to help streamline the process of testing. It’s easy to see why. Automated testing can not only help reduce the risk of human error, but also improve the accuracy and consistency of testing.
Ultimately, test automation enables companies to speed up the development process, while decreasing errors. That said, like any other technology, automated testing is not foolproof. There are a few common mistakes people make when testing software that could lead to less-than-ideal results.
Here are some examples of the biggest mistakes to avoid during automated software testing:
Failing to Choose the Right Testing Tool
Choosing the right testing tool is essential when it comes to automating software testing. There are a plethora of testing tools available, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. It’s important to choose a tool that meets the specific needs of your project.
Before selecting a tool, evaluate its capabilities, user interface, and compatibility with other tools in your development pipeline. Choose a tool that is easy to use, has a low learning curve, and is flexible enough to accommodate changes in your development process.
Automated testing is an excellent tool for streamlining the development process, but it’s important to remember that it’s not a panacea. Some tests are better suited to manual testing, such as exploratory testing. Automated tests are best used for repeatable, predictable tests such as regression testing.
Automating everything can lead to test cases that are difficult to maintain, and ultimately, can create a false sense of security. Be selective when automating tests, and ensure that each test case is necessary and provides value.
Failing to Define Test Cases
Defining clear and concise test cases is essential when automating software testing. Without clear test cases, it’s impossible to determine whether automated tests are accurate or whether they’re providing value to the development process.
When defining test cases, it’s important to keep in mind the goal of the test, the expected result, and any potential exceptions that might occur. It’s also important to document the test cases in detail so that they can be easily understood by other members of the development team.
Not Maintaining Test Cases
Automated tests require regular maintenance to remain accurate and effective. As software changes and evolves, automated tests need to be updated to reflect these changes. Failing to maintain test cases can result in inaccurate test results, and ultimately, a failed development process.
Regularly review and update test cases to ensure they remain accurate and effective. It’s also important to prioritize test cases and focus on updating those that provide the most value to the development process.
You can limit the maintenance requirement by choosing a test automation solution that keeps this to a minimum. Leapwork is an example of a testing solution that requires minimal maintenance due to its unique visual approach to building test cases.
Neglecting Test Data Management
Test data management is often overlooked when it comes to automated testing, but it’s an essential part of the process. Test data management involves ensuring that test data is accurate, consistent, and relevant.
Without proper test data management, automated tests can produce inaccurate results. It’s important to ensure that test data is up-to-date and relevant to the test being performed. Additionally, that test data should be consistent across all tests to avoid false positives or negatives.
Neglecting Test Environment Management
Test environment management involves ensuring that the environment in which tests are performed are consistent and reliable. Neglecting test environment management can result in inaccurate test results, and ultimately, a failed development process.
Ensure that the test environment is consistent across all tests and that it accurately reflects the production environment. It’s also important to ensure that the test environment is reliable, with sufficient resources to support testing.
Automated testing is a critical part of the software development process, but it’s important to avoid common mistakes that can lead to inaccurate test results and ultimately, a failed development process. By avoiding these mistakes, companies can ensure that automated testing provides value, streamlines the development process, and produces accurate and reliable results.