Choosing the right tool for Automation

Automation testing is the process through which QA tests the software through an automated software testing tool or a bot which runs the software under test.

This process is ideal to avoid extra efforts put in by QA to execute repetitive tasks for functional testing, integration testing, smoke testing or unit testing.

Generally, automation adds value to QA testing because it provides more and accurate testing coverage during the test cycle. However, it is mandatory to take the right decision when selecting an automation tool and leave the complex, time-consuming test cases to automation testing.

In this way, the QA can focus more on exploratory and regression testing.

The role of the test automation tool is important: it validates the quality of software and produces reliable, repeatable results at any point, whenever there is a code deployment or an infrastructure change with minimal manual interference.

In order to take maximum benefit of automation testing, the QA must assess the need for automation in the project. Here are some reasons why QA teams require automation testing in their QA practices:

  • 1.  There are repetitive tasks in each development cycle
  • 2.  There are frequent regression testing cycles
  • 3.  There is a need to simulate multiple user scenarios within the project
  • 4.  There is a large set of Build Verification Testing cases
  • 5.  There is unfeasibility to perform manual testing for critical functionality

    • Categories

      1.  Open-Source Tools

      Open-source tools provide free platforms to access and use source-code, with the ease of modification. They are free of cost and are developed by the community. They are popular among testers due to their free accessibility. However, they contain fewer features as compared to the commercial ones.

      2.  Commercial Automation Testing Tools

      As the name suggests, commercial tools are specifically designed for commercial purposes. They require users to purchase paid licenses and provide more features, along with technical support. Some of the best commercial automation testing tools include UFTOne, TestCafe Studio and Browserstack.

      3.  Integrating Multiple Libraries / Plugins to Build Custom Framework

      For some niche projects, the open-source software or commercial testing tool cannot fulfil requirement. Such projects require the Testing Lead to consider custom development of testing tool. These are rarely used as they require technical experts for deployment.

      Selection Criteria

      Choosing the right automation testing setup is as crucial as selecting the right tech stack for developing the application.

      There are multiple factors on the basis of which a testing team choose the automation testing tool; some factors might need to be compromised in order to achieve the desired requirement. For example, reusability and maintainability can be achieved using a complex design pattern, but execution time may be compromised.

      So, the testing team assess the project requirements and select the testing tool accordingly. Following is a list of some factors to consider:

      A.  Understand your Project Requirements Thoroughly

      What precisely does one need to automate and what amount of test cases can be automated? Type of automation is the first level of identification whether the project requires API level automation or e2e or both then we can identify the right tools for it.

      B.  Consider Existing Test Automation Tool as a Benchmark

      At 10pearls, we have created a boiler plate framework known as the 10PAutomation Framework which supports POM, Datadriven, Webdriver, TestNG, RestAssured, Support Utility, BDD & ATDD. This framework provides readability, reusability and maintainability which is the benchmark for us while selecting any other tool.

      C.  Ease of Developing and Maintaining the Scripts

      Development & maintenance of test scripts should be as simple as possible to decrease human and time resource utilization.

      D.  Ease of Test Execution for Non-Technical user

      The test suite execution should be simple and easy to run for any project member as and when required. For example, BDD framework which is written in simple English known as Gherkin language and are mapped with step definition (code) so a non-technical person can easily understand the automation coverage and execute it accordingly.

      E.  Technical Support and Assistance

      The tool that provides technical support and have a strong community.


      When choosing the right automation testing tool, there are various factors to take into account. So, whether you should use open-source or commercial tool, or create your own test automation frameworks all depends on finding a tool that fit your testing requirements.

      At the moment, the scope of automation testing is vast and hence a varied types of test automation frameworks and tools are available in the market that support automation on different applications and are still under continuous improvement.

      So go through this article and spend time in assessing your project requirements and availability of tools before jumping into implementation of automation framework.

      This article was originally published in TestPlanet.