EVOLUTION OF TESTING: FROM MANUAL TO AUTONOMOUS
We have seen a sea of change in the way software development projects are approached, however, the underlying factors defining a successful project still remains the same, as the delivery teams continuously jostle to get the right balance among time, cost and quality. Quality assurance is an integral part of any successful software application development process. By having a robust software testing mechanism in place, enterprises ensure delivery of successful software projects.
Software testing since its formal inception in the 1980s has evolved. From being a manual and human resources intensive process it has moved towards automation, with technology helping QA engineers automate a bulk of the repetitive tasks.
As per the “State of Software Testing Report 2017”, by PractiTest, software companies are adopting DevOps in a more holistic manner, and QA engineers are now seeing more involvement in CI& CD process, playing a larger part in the software development cycle. With more and more companies adopting DevOps & agile methodology, involving continuous software development, leaving testing to the end is no longer an option.
Two factors, which determine the success in the continuous delivery model, DevOps, are
- Quality of testing – ensuring the highest level of testing is of prime importance to DevOps.
- Speed of development and testing – to ensure software release pipeline is not stalled, speed of testing should match the speed of software development. Any delay in testing will slow down the release of new development.
This change in approach requires continuous testing process, which ensures seamless code change in the software release and quality at speed, throughout the software development cycle.
However, managing continuous testing manually is a challenge as it presents key issues to address
- Siloed automation
- A lack of end to end visibility of requirements
- The high volume of test
As per industry reports in 2018, 90% of software testing is performed manually and it consumes a large chunk of the software development cycle. Manual continuous testing slows down the release of new development and thereby preventing the realization of DevOps. To address this challenge, the industry needs to move towards autonomous testing, which ensures zero-touch quality assurance.
In the era of digital disruption, autonomous testing, made possible by the application of digital technologies such as AI (Artificial Intelligence), ML (Machine Learning), and NLP (Natural Language Processing), is becoming mainstream.
Analysts predict that Automation Testing Market will be worth $19.27 Billion by 2023. Autonomous testing has the potential to revolutionize the testing as we know today.
It has enhanced the speed of automation. With autonomous testing, one can automatically create test scripts. It makes creation and maintenance of test scripts easier. It helps in reducing the cost of operation by bringing down the number of test automation & manual testers.
Benefits of Autonomous Testing:
- Significant reduction in time to automate: Autonomous testing helps automate large test suite faster, resulting in the increase of delivery speed, which in turn provides more time to the QA team for extensive test coverages. Autonomous testing helps in early identification of defects in the software development process
- Saves cost on building skills: Autonomous testing eliminates the need for coding and expertise on the test automation tool. Test scripts are generated from the test cases written by domain experts in plain English. This is a huge cost saver as companies invest a significant amount of time and money either to train new resources or hire costly resources, who are familiar with test automation skills.
- Easier maintenance of test scripts created from plain English test suites.
- Enables participation and collaboration of business analysts and subject matter experts, who may not have technical expertise, in the autonomous testing model.
Advancement in technologies is helping businesses transform themselves digitally. Autonomous testing, helps enterprises accelerate their digital transformation journey with
- Improved business and delivery agility
- Quicker go to market
- Reduced total cost of ownership & cost of operations
- Better ROI
- Increased throughput
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