What is Automated Testing?

New software is developed and released faster than ever before. It’s now a requirement for every business with a digital presence to improve software testing pace and accuracy to keep up. Software testing is a comprehensive process that requires coordination efforts by business stakeholders, developers, and testers. Manual testing is the most common type of software testing, but it is time intensive and difficult to scale. To relieve pressure on developers and testers, there’s test automation.

You may be wondering, what is test automation? Test automation is a software testing method that makes use of software to control the execution of tests and compares the results with predicted results. 

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What Is Test Automation?

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what is test automation?

How Does Automated Testing Differ from Continuous Testing?

Whether we use a mobile deposit banking app or an online portal to connect to our doctor, software has become a pillar of our daily lives. Consumers expect their web and mobile apps to work when they need them, which means robust software testing and QA is a requirement for DevOps.

Within software testing, there are three types that teams must understand and implement. Learn about automated testing vs manual testing vs continuous testing:

Manual testing

The most traditional type of testing. In manual software testing, analysts and testers create the tests and execute them by hand. Typically, manual testing is time intensive but beneficial because hands-on testing enables a more contextual and nuanced understanding of the test being executed.

Automated testing

Enlists special tools to run multiple software tests at one time. Test automation was designed to speed up the testing process and increase overall testing coverage.  Automated testing leads to better error detection because test automation tools can cover more operating systems, devices, and scenarios than manual testing. 

Continuous testing

The process of executing automated tests in a repeatable and scaled manner. Continuous testing occurs when software testing is fully automated and optimized. The benefits of continuous testing include fast feedback, swift release turnaround, and quality web and mobile apps.

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Automated Testing vs Manual Testing vs Continuous Testing

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Common Challenges in Automated Testing

Failed tests are a natural part of automated testing. When a team is continuously testing, broken tests can get out of hand quickly. That’s why feedback and visibility are a key piece of successful and scalable automated testing. 

Most automated testing challenges follow a pattern, which makes identifying the root cause possible. There are four common root causes to test automation issues. You may have issues with your test scripts or the framework they’re built upon. This happens when there are deficits in resources, skillsets, and testing experience. 

The root cause may be in your backend. Your network could be failing or the cloud virtualization could be encountering issues. 

Another source of testing challenges could be with the lab. Today’s labs have many devices and a variety of OS versions. This creates a vulnerability when Wi-Fi, SIM cards, and other configurations lead to spotty and inconsistent connectivity. 

Finally, testing challenges could simply be due to execution errors. If one tester attempts to execute a test while another analyst is using that feature, the test will fail. 

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4 Signs Your Test Automation is Failing You

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Why You Need Analytics in Test Automation

Challenges in automation testing are a predictable part of the path to continuous testing. There are five specific areas of challenge in test automation including skillset limitations, lack of stabilization, difficult lab management, and a dynamic environment. 

Skillset in test automation is a very common issue. Test automation is being implemented across organizations for its obvious benefits, but many times existing analysts and team members aren’t fully trained or experienced in test automation. In the case that test automation is successfully being executed, another issue is lack of stability. Teams can too quickly move to the next step of automation and continuous testing without a runway of stabilization. With testing labs, challenges occur when teams still maintain their own setup. This creates issues as operating systems, devices, and browser versions are released every day. This forces an unreasonable amount of time on lab maintenance. 

Ultimately, analytics tools can alleviate many of the challenges in automation testing. With smart reporting tools teams can see the results of their efforts quickly. This enables developers, testers, and business stakeholders to know how to proceed. If problems arise, analysis tools act as a roadmap leading to stable, scaled automation. 

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Biggest Challenges of Test Automation & Analysis

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automated testing with analytics

Utilizing Open Source Frameworks in Test Automation

Open source software is a powerful resource for teams just starting their journey with test automation. Open source test automation tools are so useful that many large enterprises have adopted the frameworks as part of their DevOps toolchain.

There are many options to choose from among open source software for test automation. This can complicate framework selection, because it’s difficult to know the best framework for your specific team’s needs. How do you know which platform is worth investing time on training and learning? Which framework will offer the most seamless integration and deployment in your environment? 

There are several specific considerations to know when choosing an open source automated testing tool. Keep reading to learn more about web and mobile automated testing tools.

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Utilizing Open Source Frameworks in Test Automation

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How to Find the Right Automation Testing Tools For You

Once you’ve done the hard work of defining which tests to automate and whether an open source framework is right for you, it’s time to begin the review process. Shopping for test automation tools is an important process and will affect the success of your DevOps. 

The best way to identify the automation tool that is the right for your team is to create your criteria. Once you know the criteria and standards you need a tool to meet, it will clarify and speed up the review process. 

The automation testing tools you choose should simplify your continuous testing efforts. To help, we created a guide that defines the key features in any test automation tool. Use this as a roadmap to the perfect automation tool for your team.  

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What to Look for in Automation Testing Tools

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What to look for in automation testing tools

How Perfecto Can Help Your Test Automation

The world’s largest enterprises rely on Perfecto for to achieve their testing goals. We love helping teams achieve greatness without slowing down delivery. With Perfecto’s expertise, you’ll turn testing from a liability into an asset that can expedite your entire DevOps processes.

Don’t let testing hold you back. Try Perfecto today.