All companies that are developing a product need to have tests in place. Testing is a crucial aspect of product development as it assures quality in the final product. Most small and mid-sized companies don’t pay much attention to testing even though it is proven that testing delivers a strong product. Although it is crucial to have tests in place, it is also important how these tests are run.
Many companies favor conducting manual tests, but arguably that is not the best approach. Automating the test process provides much better results, increases overall software development efficiency and facilitates the creation of more robust tools in comparison to manual testing.
Let’s look at some of the key benefits of using test automation when developing a product.
1. Faster Feedback Cycle
In manual testing, receiving feedback for a newly developed feature can be a lengthy wait. Test automation enables developers to decrease the feedback cycle and bring quicker validation for phases during the development of the product.
Test automation is particularly beneficial as it enables developers to detect problems or bugs in the initial stages of development, which increases the team’s efficiency overall.
2. Team Saves Time
Automating test procedures allows the team to dedicate less time to validating newly developed features. It improves communication between other departments like marketing, design or product owners that depend on the test results before they can move forward. These departments can track progress and see exactly what stage the product is at using the logs of the automated tests.
3. Reduced Business Expenses
In an automated test environment, the company developing the product will save funds as fewer resources are used for testing the product. The key here is not to conduct any manual testing and over the length of the project, it can make a big difference.
Obviously, the installation and setup of an automated testing environment take time and resources. Additionally, the developer would be paying for a precise test automation tool that will enable them to create a stable test automation environment.
4. Higher Test Coverage
Manual testing sets limits on how many tests can be verified. Automation allows companies to spend a significant amount of time creating new tests and adding them to the automated test list. This increases the test coverage of the product and allows more features to be properly tested resulting in a higher quality product.
Moreover, automated testing enables developers to write detailed tests that address complex use cases. This is because lengthy tests are often overlooked during manual testing and tend to be run without supervision.
5. Reusability of Test Suite
Initially, outlining the automated test suite can be a challenge. However, once a suite is defined, it is quite straightforward to reuse tests for other use cases and even different projects. The benefit is that developers can run these automated test suites on another project or product.
Once the developers gain a thorough understanding of how to set up an automated test suite and its related tools like continuous integration (CI) pipeline, it becomes easy to replicate the process to set up test automation for a new project.
6. Faster Time to Market
As mentioned above, newly developed features can be rigorously tested and validated using test automation. This decreases the feedback and test cycle while allowing companies to put products on the market faster.
7. Better Insights
Automated testing generates better insights than manual testing even when some tests fail. Automated software testing provides insights about the application while also showcasing the memory content, data tables, file content and various internal program stats. This helps developers identify exactly what has gone wrong.
8. Improved Accuracy
Even the best testing engineer is prone to make mistakes during manual testing. Especially when testing complex use cases, an error can occur. On the flip side, automated tests can run tests with 100 percent accuracy as they output the same results every time they are run.
9. Automated Testing Provides More Features
Automated test suites can lead to the development of more features, for instance – creating a simulation of thousands of virtual users that interact with the product in order to monitor how the application behaves. It is impossible to generate this type of behavior using manual testing. As a result, such features save developers a lot of time.
10. Less Stress on QA Team
Implementing an automated testing strategy allows QA teams to dedicate more time to taste other than manual testing. In spite of that, the job description of a QA engineer becomes much more interesting once the repetitive element of manual testing is removed.
For most QA engineers, testing automation provides the opportunity to create new tools that further optimize the current testing suite or augment it with new features.
11. Quickly Determine the Stability of Your Build
Test automation helps developers to automate tests that determine the stability of the product. Usually, smoke testing is used to validate stability. But, smoke testing is a slow process that needs manual input from the testing engineer like setting up a database with test data.
Additionally, smoke testing can be automated through test automation. Developers can automatically create and prepare the correct databases in order to execute smoke tests. Doing so, allows developers to quickly determine the stability of the build.
Basically, test automation allows developers to quickly release a build and automatically validate its stability.
12. Eliminate Human Error
Manual testing leaves the door open for human error to creep in. This is especially true for complex situations. That is why it is prudent to rely on test automation to avoid mistakes. The rate of mistakes made with test automation is significantly lower than manual testing.