As most software professionals know, there are significant differences between manual and automated testing. Manual testing is a labor-intensive and monotonous process that requires a lot of time. Automated testing, in its turn, helps save time when working with complex software, but requires certain knowledge.
Where to begin mastering autotests? To better orient you in this area, we have prepared a guide to the basics of a practical and quite interesting area – automated testing. Read this article, and all you will have to do is to choose a software testing automation tool.
Test automation is closely associated with Mike Cohn, author of the book “Scrum. Agile Software Development.” He introduced a system for automated testing in the form of a pyramid.
The base of the pyramid is unit testing, i.e. testing of separate units of the source code. It is followed by integration testing where separate program modules are tested in groups. Further comes acceptance tests defining the product’s fitness for future use. At the top of the pyramid is the testing of the user interface (UI tests), which can be performed both automatically and manually. Thus, automated testing is at the intersection of testing and programming.
Manual testing in the form of a cloud is often placed above the top since it is not considered an integral part of the pyramid, though it is interrelated with it. This pyramid is considered typical for automated testing, although it can be inverted and modified depending on the specifics of the work.
Benefits of automated testing
Automation gives the tester several advantages:
- Responsiveness – the automated script does not have to check with instructions and documentation;
- Time savings – automation does not require the tester’s intervention, and the tester can switch to other tasks at that time;
- Reusability – a test script can be used more than once;
- No “human factor” – the test script does not make mistakes in the results and does not miss testing time;
- Automatic reporting – test results are automatically saved and sent to the involved specialists.
Limitations of automated testing
At the same time, this approach is not a panacea and does not exclude several drawbacks:
- Costs – good automated testing tools, like learning automated software testing requires an investment;
- Uniformity – written tests always work the same way, which is not always bad, but sometimes allows you to miss a defect that would be noticed by a live person;
- Support and development costs – the more complex the application and the more often it is updated, the more costly it is to develop and modify automated tests;
- Missing small flaws – Tests miss small bugs that they are not programmed to check.
Test automation tools include software used to create, set up, execute, and analyze the results of automated tests.
The choice of a tool depends on the test objects and requirements to test scenarios. Naturally, one tool cannot support the entire range of technologies, that is why all that is left is to try and look for the most suitable one. Quite often QA engineers stop at the choice of several tools.
- recognition of controls in the application;
- the time required to support the scripts;
- convenience for writing new scripts.
How do you choose between manual and automated testing? Everything is determined by your personal preferences and the complexity of the product you are working with or intend to work with. However, today’s labor market dictates its own rules: today companies more often want to see specialists who are able both to test manually and to deploy complex automation.