Continuous testing is a great way to ensure your product is released to the market at quality customers expect. However, incorporating continuous testing into your organization is not a simple procedure. In this article, we will walk you through the 5 best practices that you should consider to help you effectively build a continuous testing strategy.
Continuous testing is not just about automation. It involves teams using proper tools to make the testing process easier, faster, comprehensive, and more effective. Such as tools that work with the dev toolchains to remove the manual overhead (where possible). Additionally, tools that remove/reduce mundane operations for testers, enabling them to focus on what is important: testing.
While manual testing is laborious and time-intensive, automation gives time back to your engineers to actually fix the bugs found during testing. The best part about test automation is the quick feedback the team receives. Continuous testing allows early and often feedback so that changes can be made far before releasing features to the market. So, automating as much as you can in the development lifecycle will help you achieve faster releases.
Keep your communication lines transparent to prevent the testing pipeline from becoming siloed. Bottlenecks can form when communication between other teams or roles within the same team are not transparent, resulting in time wasted that could otherwise be spent more productively. It’s like a well-choreographed dance. The steps have been set in place and you need to learn how to move fluidly with your partner to smoothly fulfill all the steps. Active communication is the key to achieving the balance necessary to effectively carry out continuous testing.
Use quantifiable metrics to keep track of your success or failure rate during testing. Continuous testing offers immediate results to see if the software is working as expected. Hard data yield results to measure progress and quality outputs. Tracking how many bugs are found and corrected provides continuous validation for your business value ROI.
Two key metrics that you need to be sure to keep track of are: counts of defects and counts of fail/pass test scripts. Tracking the number of defects discovered in your testing process will help you determine if the number increases or decreases. If it increases, strategize ways to change your development process; if it decreases, keep up the great work! Additionally, keeping track of the number of pass/fail test scripts will help you produce a comprehensive testing strategy to create better functionality for your application.
Containerization refers to the process of bundling all components of an application together – including configuration files, libraries, and dependencies – within its own operating system.
Containerization makes continuous testing easier to process by keeping each service of the application in its own environment. Imagine being able to test only the specific code that you need at one time, rather than the entire application.
Also, using containers for your test environments keeps the often difficult-to-maintain environments up-to-date with the latest code changes that would be released to production. Furthermore, if the test suite fails or if the data ends up corrupted, the container can be discarded and another one set up with fresh data.
After all, implementing continuous testing should be painless, a natural progression. If the thought of continuous testing makes you sweat, I hope this article will help you make the best decision for your software testing needs.