This blog will help you to know about the best practices of test automation. It also provides specific information about why and when to start the automation, how to cover all the expectation and objectives, etc.

Test automation is an automated way to perform testing and it can be done for all types of testing i.e. Functional, Usability, Sanity, Smoke, Acceptance, etc. Demand of Test automation is growing day by day in the industry because of many reasons. Reducing the human effort is most accepted reason for test automation to save the time & money. To utilize the test automation benefits in a better way it must require to approach this with its best practices. Following are the best practices of test automation:
  • Set the right expectations
  • Set the objectives
  • Target the right goal
  • Build the right team
  • Choose the right technology
  • Easy to extend and maintain

Set the right expectation

An expectation is a belief about what might happen in the future.
It is difficult to measure all the expectations for test automation but following expectation must be measured before starting the automation:

What to automate? Clear picture about the module/feature/scenario which requires automation.
When to automate? All information about delivery timeline of the automation project.

Set the objectives

An objective is a specific result that a person or system aims to achieve within a time frame and with available resources.
Objectives can be set based on expectations. Following items should be considered to set the objectives:

How to automate? Required and available resources which can be used in automation.
Planning: Prepare all the plans that are required to meet the objective.
Feedback/ Suggestions: Provide feedback/suggestion to customers if something needs to be added or removed from the current expectations.

Target the right goal
A goal is an observable and measurable end result having one or more objectives to be achieved.
Targeted goal should be defined based on expectation and objectives. Following should be considered while defining the goal:

Final product: Final product must be easy to use and ease in maintenance.
Checklists: Checklist should be prepared for all tems, so it can be easily identified Done/TBD items.
ROI (Return of Investments): Target to build a valuable product which can have accurate result and find more bugs to satisfied client expectations.

Build the right team

A team is a group of people with a full set of complementary skills required to complete a task, job or project.
Having a right team with full set of complementary skills will ease target achievement. Following items should be considered while building a team:

Divide efforts: Task divided based on their skillset.
Raise confidence: Raise the team confidence by providing continuous feedback.
Better customer support: Review the customer feedback/suggestion to provide a better support.

Choose the right technology

Technology is the branch of knowledge dealing with engineering or applied sciences.
Technology should always be as per application to be automated. Following are points which can considered to choose technology:

Tools: Tools and utilities must be selected based on team skillset and application under test. For example, if team knows more about Selenium tool and Java language then automation project can start using these tools & technologies.
Reusability: Architecture and design must be with respect of reusability.
Accuracy: Result should be accurate in multiple execution.
CI Integration: Project must be run in CI environment timely and bugs should be fixed immediately. For CI integration Jenkins can be used.
Analytics: Reporting must be enable to table, chart and graphics for better analytics of the execution status.

Easy to extend and maintain

Enhancement is define as increase or improvement in quality, value or extent.
Future enhancement should be always ease with respect to functionality/UI change. Below approaches will help to make the maintenance ease:

Data driven: This approach will helps to make the data maintenance easy.
Object repository: It will helps to make the element locators maintenance easy.
Code repository: It will helps to monitor the code changes anytime.
Bugs and Defects: All the issues must available in defect tracker with appropriate status. For defect tracking Jira can be used.

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