Introducing automation to manual software testing offers great potential for the IT world. Replacing repeatable, mundane tasks with automation can improve productivity, increase velocity, and lead to a higher quality of product.
So, what development model best aligns with automation?
The truth is that you can use automation with any development model. The real question is not about what development methodology is best suited to automation, but rather how you fit automation into your model.
The purpose of software test automation is to reduce human toil and risk. It can do that in any development model, at any point in the software development lifecycle, and for multiple purposes, including:
- Validating mobile and web experiences across devices and browsers
- Integrating services and APIs into your technology ecosystem
- Validating the quality and accuracy of data for all key data types and uses – streaming, batch, EDI/ETL, data warehouses to data marts, reporting and analytics
- Driving regression testing to speed up cycle time and find defects that would otherwise disrupt production and negatively impact customer satisfaction
- Assuring comprehensive and efficient coverage in combination with manual testing
- In-production testing and monitoring to ensure the stability and availability of your in-service applications
Even in an Agile shop, with constant chunks of work completed and deployed, and requirements changing in every sprint, automation can work. In fact, it’s a good practice to automate in cases where there are a lot of changes. Just be mindful of the time and cost you are spending to do it.
For example, if you spend an hour developing test automation in a case in which you are doing dozens of code pushes in a week, the automation might save you a hundred hours. Even if you threw away the test at the end of the week, it would be worthwhile: one hour to save a hundred hours.
While automation can work extremely well in any development model, it isn’t about automation for the sake of automation. Ultimately, it comes down to weighing the business value versus the cost of the automation.
For more information about introducing automation into manual testing, read the guide, Software Testing in IT: How to Bridge the Gap Between Manual Testing and Automation