When you have a commercial web application, you are always challenged to remain competitive. You are constantly under pressure to rollout new features for your clients. While software developers have adopted agile methodologies to speed up software release cycles, this process can leave your web application vulnerable to bugs. In such case, to what extent can you validate the reliability of all functionalities? I’ll share some of my experiences and examples to show you how automated tests are crucial to stay ahead of the competition.
In my previous firm when we were looking for a team collaboration web app, we approached one of the solution providers. We liked their product but it needed some customization to suit our needs. They promised us a quick delivery.
On the delivery day, we had big smile on our faces. But as we ran the product all of us were left disappointed. The web app failed as it returned erroneous data when fetching information from other productivity apps. It was too buggy to be useful. The whole promise of delivering it first, delivering it best, vanished.
With competitors at every corner, deploying first could reap benefit only when you can assure quality. By automating your functional test suite you are assuring quality in the agreed time. Your ability to deliver will earn you customer loyalty.
A booking web app can have input parameters with many variations. Say, a date input which varies across the users. The date needs to be tested with various combinations of logins, locations, time, and other user inputs.
With manual testing, any such web app can take hours if not days of work. The same tests can be put on automation. The scripts once made will be repeatedly used for various combinations of inputs. This amplification reduces the effort significantly while testing for a wide range of inputs.
Moreover, manual testing doesn’t reduce your efforts when minor changes are made to a feature. With automation you only need to edit the test case for the changed part. As this takes only a few minutes, the tests can start running immediately. Thus, the feature is deployed much faster.
It is important to note that not all automation frameworks support importing data sets. Some frameworks only allow changing data set from the script. Few other frameworks need variations in the scripts for a single data set. These are laborious and time consuming approaches.
Hence, you must use a framework that allows importing of data sets. By doing this you can test all possible combination of inputs with a single script. This approach gives higher ROI compared to other frameworks.
Improved quality leads to a strong brand
One of my acquaintance (a crazy shopper) has abandoned a shopping site for a small reason. She found that few items in her cart disappeared when she wanted to checkout. The website had a fault - It couldn’t notify the items that cannot be delivered to her location. All her efforts in selecting the items was wasted. She left the website angry.
Although this website offered great discounts, she has not changed her mind. She (like many other users) speaks about this experience in her social circle. The bad review gets compounded and the brand will lose customers for not meeting the quality.
Brand building comes from years of effort. The web app also grows more complex and has chances to ruin the reputation even with small errors. Thus, precision in testing a complex web app is important. Even a diligent tester will make mistakes during manual testing. Automated tests perform the same steps with more precision and never forgets to give detailed results.
Ensuring quality in large number of new releases is difficult even with a QA team. One of our FinTech clients frequently releases features and updates. They have a team of eight QA engineers testing the code developed by thirty developers. The QA team leader is constantly under pressure to sign off on the quality of these releases to production.
For example, last week, they introduced 2 big and 3 smaller features, such as a change in user interface (UI), a new report, as well as stability issues and bug fixes. And these needed to be live in two days.
This is a tall order to manage. To avoid having to spend nights and weekends at work, their team adopted CloudQA to automate their entire regression test suite. The team made their workload manageable while ensuring that the releases maintained quality.
Imagine this – you have a team of manual testers, working on functional testing to be released into production in few days. The usual constraints and glitches (like environment not up or the build failed or smoke test failed) shorten the duration to one day, they try their level best and make the release. The next day your client reports a priority one bug. You could take out the frustration on your team thereby making the team frustrated.
Automating would help the team to perform exploratory testing in parallel or perform integration testing before the release. The unimpeded performance of the product will help boost the morale of your team.
CloudQA can help you in deploying high quality web applications faster. TruRT, our functional test tool will help you in building a comprehensive test suites. You can amplify reusability of test scripts, get precision in testing of complex web apps, and boost capabilities of your QA team.
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