I like to compare Test Automation to the sport of Racing. There are 3 main fundamentals in the sport of Racing; the Track; the Race Car; and the Race Car Driver. When I compare Racing to software testing; the Track is the Application; the Car is the Testing tool, and the Race Car Driver of course - is test the automation engineer!
In the sport of Racing you need to know your terrain or track that you will be racing on; this is the same for testing, you need to know your applications and testing schedules. Some enterprises have diverse applications that need to be tested on many different platforms; OS and browsers. Development schedules are also a very important aspect of test automation strategy. It is important to understand how often you will need to run test automation and how often you will need to develop new test scripts and update existing ones.
Another important aspect is the Race Car or in our example the Test Automation Tool. Your Race Car has to be able to handle the Track; it's turns, slops and it must be able to handle smoothly in any weather conditions and at any speeds required. Otherwise your cars won’t be able to race on this Track, let alone come in First! Same with the Test Automation tools, your tools have to be able to automate any type of applications in your organizations and provide the ability to deliver test automation according to your development and release schedules fast.
One of the main pitfalls of the test automation industry is that testing tools require high maintenance; just like race cars that keep crashing, they require maintenance to get back on the track and back in the race. With the high maintenance of scripts executives are dropping test automation and are going back to manual testing or API-only testing, in an effort to lower the cost and time-to-market of application testing.
Ideally a Race Car should be able to race on any Terrain or Track, in any weather condition and at any speed; it has to be very easy to operate, and therefore should require less maintenance.
Of course, the Driver is another critical aspect to winning the race. However, in the enterprise world often managers have to work with the personnel on hand and within a hiring budget that doesn’t always allow for hiring the most experienced resources, especially in the QA industry. Never the less, when planning for successful test automation one should always account for professional help and training, especially in the very beginning when you have to show ROI in a short period of time to justify the investment.
At ZAPTEST we are providing all the necessary components for you to Win the test automation Race:
- ZAP’s Race Car runs on any terrain or track, as we can automate any application on any OS
- ZAP’s Expert Drivers will be racing for you and with you, everyone can play-along as we engage with your team
by Alex Chernyak - Founder and CTO