Automation’s fundamental goals are universal across all industries and platforms. A strong test automation capability is a boon to IT transformation and software implementation that seeks to move testing left and save money on testing services. With automation, everyone wants:
- Reduce testing time. Automating allows companies to speed up test execution, run multiple tests simultaneously, and reduce time to market.
- Increase test coverage. Data-driven automation allows for greater testing variation than with humans. This eliminates the possibility of testing coverage being reduced due to time constraints.
- Enhance test quality. Automated environments eliminate human error and consistently perform tests.
- Save money. Workers can concentrate on other tasks, while incremental testing execution costs less.
These desired outcomes can often be hindered by poorly designed, implemented, or operated test automation capabilities. These obstacles can make it difficult for leaders to commit to an automation program. Let’s deep dive into some common test automation challenges that impact business ROI:
Test automation challenges
Companies face four major challenges in their quest to increase the return on investment (ROI) through automation.
- An inefficient automation approaches
- Failure to implement automation capabilities
- Innovation is lacking
- As a result, high maintenance
These are some common pitfalls when a business approaches these issues:
- Focusing on automation at the user interface (UI), or using the wrong tool to automate a task, is not a good idea.
- A “automate all” mentality can lead to a loss of focus on the most beneficial areas.
- A poorly designed automation framework can cause problems when businesses try to scale up the technology.
When automation planning fails to produce a structured set of metrics and key performance indicators, overhead, and operations problems can arise. This hinders the ability to measure and communicate ROI effectively. The cost of buying and maintaining an automation tool, the isolation of test automation, and the cost of hiring people and automation skills are other obstacles.
Automation strategy and planning cannot be complete without innovation. Companies limit automation to testing when they can rely on existing tools to solve new problems. Failure to use the open-source community can lead to automation and testing teams falling into this trap. Your organization may not be the only one to face a testing problem. Someone else has likely solved it before you, so don’t waste weeks trying to figure out how to fix it.
Maintenance costs can also add up if the solution isn’t used frequently, when test scripts are broken or when the automation team lacks sufficient knowledge of the domain or business processes.
The ability to place automation in the right context is essential to automating your business. Automation is not an all-purpose solution. Automation is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Different situations, applications, technologies, and teams require various tools, frameworks, and priorities. Automation implementations can only be successful if automation is properly recognized and integrated into an organization’s testing strategy. This means a business plans how automation fits in with its overall testing approach, timeline, and schedule. Both automation strategy and manual testing strategy should not be considered separate pieces. They should be seen as complementary pieces.
For this purpose, the business must have:
- Define clear test automation objectives
- Select the best approach and tools
- Identify the process
- Scalable operations and delivery model is essential
- Inject innovation continuously
Let’s understand one by one:
1. Define clear test automation objectives: A successful automation project depends on the right strategy, the right scope, and the right tools. The strategy hinges on evaluating which things can be automated based on their stability and the technology behind them. So before starting your testing, let’s decide the business’s objective first.
2. Select the best approach and tools: Automation can’t prevent functional changes, but the impact of these changes on automation can still be reduced if automation teams integrate with other testing teams within an organization and if the right approach, tools, and innovation are properly leveraged. Businesses have to identify the right tool and right approach for this purpose.
3. Identify the process: You should prepare for the execution of your test automation project before you dive into it fully. This will allow you to allocate the appropriate resources at different times, identify potential risks, and take necessary actions. It will help you identify the testing process and determine the most efficient way to complete the task.
4. A scalable operations and delivery model is essential: Operationalizing your automation capabilities is an important step in the automation journey. This requires the ability to analyze manual processes and create an ROI analysis that will drive automation priorities and operations.
While metrics can highlight the business case of strong automation capabilities, they cannot exist in isolation. They should be integrated into the overall testing strategy and the software development lifecycle. You can easily get overwhelmed by rushing to automation without tracking ROI and planning.
- Continuously Innovation: Innovation is not a trend or something you can aspire to. It’s a necessity in today’s fast-paced technology world. Apps have evolved at lightning speed with the help of AI and automation. Preparing for the tech changes and innovations is essential to achieving your business goals.
The theoretical benefits of automation can be realized by clearly stating your goals, using the right approach, planning, and implementing the right strategy. Automating your products faster can not only save time but also reduces the amount of testing required. It is not about whether or not to automate but how to do it most beneficially.