Improving Productivity with QA Testing Automation

Feb 17, 2024 | Test Automation Insights

Unit Testing

Quality assurance (QA) testing is a critical phase in the software development lifecycle that allows you to ensure that your applications meet the standards you’ve set before they’re deployed.

However, traditional manual testing methods are often time-consuming and prone to human error. That’s where QA testing automation can help. Test automation will not only streamline the testing process but also significantly improve your team’s productivity and accuracy.

Ranorex and DesignWise are two automated QA testing tools that will help your team create and execute automated test scripts smoothly and efficiently. So if you want to know how many steps are involved in the automated test process or how which software tools to use — we’re here to help.

 

Automated Testing: Step by Step

1. Identify Suitable Test Cases for Automation

Your first goal is to select tests that will benefit most from automation. Typically, these are tests that are run frequently and that pull away significant time and effort from your team.

Regression Tests

These are tests that verify whether previously developed and tested software still performs correctly after it has been changed through updates or interfacing with other software. These changes might include new features, configurations, bug fixes, or enhancements. Because regression tests are performed frequently throughout the development process, automating them can save your staff significant time and effort.

Smoke Tests

Smoke testing, also known as “build verification testing,” is a set of tests run on each new build to verify that the most crucial functions of the program work and that the build is stable enough for further testing. If you start it and there’s no smoke, proverbially speaking, you’ve passed the smoke test. Automating smoke tests allows for quick verification of the build’s stability, and they should be run often, especially in the early phases of development.

Load and Performance Tests

These tests assess how the system behaves under a heavy load. They measure response times, throughput rates, and resource utilization levels to ensure the software meets your performance standards. Automation will help you quickly run a range of scenarios involving potentially thousands of virtual users, which would be impractical, if not impossible, to replicate manually.

Data-Driven Tests

Data-driven testing involves running a set of tests where only the test data changes and the sequence of actions remains constant. It’s used to test how the application handles various inputs effectively. Automating data-driven tests will enable you to execute numerous test cases efficiently by feeding different sets of data into the same test script — saving time and reducing errors.

API Tests

This type of testing focuses on verifying that application programming interfaces (APIs) meet your expectations for functionality, reliability, performance, and security. These tests are conducted at the message layer without a GUI. API tests are ideal for automation because they are stable, can be run quickly, and provide early detection of issues at the service level, independent of the UI.

Unit Tests

This is the testing of individual components or pieces of code to verify that each part functions correctly in isolation. Since unit tests are low-level and numerous, automating them allows developers to quickly check the health of their codebase after changes are made, which helps facilitate a test-driven development (TDD) approach.

Integration Tests

These tests verify the interfaces and interactions between different components of the application to ensure they work together as expected. Since you’ll want to run a lot of integration tests, it’s typically more efficient to automate these early on.

Compatibility Tests

Compatibility testing checks if the software works as expected across different browsers, operating systems, and mobile devices. Given the vast combination of environments and configurations, automation allows for a comprehensive level of coverage that would be too time-consuming to achieve manually.

2. Design and Develop Your Test Scripts

Before writing the test scripts, be sure to familiarize yourself with the automation tool you’ve chosen, particularly its scripting language and capabilities. Break down your test scripts into reusable modules or functions to enhance their reusability and maintainability.

You should also use external data sources (like CSV files) for test data to make the scripts reusable across different test cases. Maintain clear documentation and comments within the scripts to ensure they are understandable and maintainable, and use version control systems to manage script versions and collaborate with your team.

3. Set Up the Test Environment

Ensure the test environment closely mirrors the production environment but is isolated to avoid any disruptions. This includes setting up the necessary servers, databases, and any other infrastructure components. Configure the network settings to mimic production conditions, including any necessary proxies, firewalls, or VPNs. Always be sure that your data is sanitized if you’re using production data to avoid any data leakage.

4. Execute Your Tests

You might try running your scripts manually at first to make sure they’re going to work, before your first automated test execution. You’ll want to configure triggers for test execution, such as on every commit, nightly builds, or on specific branches.

5. Analyze the Results

After the execution is complete, it’s time to analyze the results to find any failures or defects. Helpful automated testing tools will generate reports that highlight pass/fail status, execution time, and any errors that are found. Make sure there’s a process for sharing your findings with the development team to quickly resolve any issues you find.

6. Maintain the Scripts

As the application evolves, regularly update the test scripts to align with new features or changes in existing functionality. Periodically review and refactor scripts for efficiency and effectiveness, removing redundancy and improving execution times. Use version control for test scripts to track changes, manage versions, and facilitate collaboration among team members.

 

Ranorex QA Automated Testing Tools

Ranorex Studio is a comprehensive automated QA testing software for executing scripts across desktop, web, and mobile applications. It is designed to simplify the creation, execution, and management of automated tests, regardless of a user’s programming expertise.

User-Friendly Interface

Ranorex Studio offers a user-friendly interface that allows both beginners and experienced testers to efficiently create automated tests. It features drag-and-drop functionality and a powerful record-and-playback tool to enable fast QA test automation without writing extensive code.

Ranorex Spy

Ranorex Spy is our tool for inspecting and analyzing UI elements of desktop, web, and mobile applications. It provides detailed information about the elements, making it easier to identify and work with them in test scripts, even in complex and dynamic interfaces. This is crucial for creating stable and scalable automated tests that are less prone to breakage due to UI changes.

Cross-Platform Testing

Ranorex supports automated testing on Windows, macOS, and Linux platforms. For mobile testing, it covers both Android and iOS applications. This cross-platform compatibility ensures comprehensive testing coverage across the most commonly used operating systems and devices.

Integration with Selenium WebDriver

Ranorex offers seamless integration with Selenium WebDriver. It allows testers to execute Ranorex tests across various browsers and operating systems using Selenium Grid to further improve your cross-browser testing efforts.

Data-Driven Testing

With Ranorex, you can easily implement data-driven testing by connecting test cases to data sources such as Excel files, CSV files, and databases. This feature enables the execution of tests with multiple data sets to help you improve your test efficiency.

Test Execution and Reporting

Ranorex provides detailed reports of test executions, including screenshots and video recordings of test runs. These reports offer insightful information for analyzing test results, identifying issues, and improving test scenarios.

Integrations

Ranorex supports integration with version control systems like Git, Subversion, and Team Foundation Server (TFS), and it also integrates smoothly with continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD) tools such as Jenkins, TeamCity, and Azure DevOps.

 

How DesignWise Can Help

DesignWise is a powerful tool for staff who may not know how to create automated test scripts on their own. It can also significantly reduce the time and effort it takes to implement QA testing automation.

Intuitive Test Creation

The platform offers an intuitive interface for defining test inputs and parameters. Users can easily specify the factors (features or variables) and the values those factors can take. DesignWise then automatically generates a set of optimized test cases that cover all necessary combinations of these inputs.

By using advanced algorithms, DesignWise generates the minimum number of test cases required to achieve maximum coverage of the test space. This can help your teams significantly reduce test execution time while maintaining or even improving the quality of the testing process.

Gherkin Test Creation

DesignWise allows developers to easily write their own test scripts in natural language with Gherkin. The Gherkin text editor includes autocompleting features and syntax highlighting, while also allowing users to create scenario outlines for their expected outcome or application flow. This is especially useful for teams using Behavioral Driven Development (BDD) principles.

 

Why Choose Ranorex?

Excellent Security

Ranorex offers robust security features designed to protect sensitive data. Our off-grid testing capabilities ensure that tests can be run without exposing data on the internet, which helps safeguard against potential breaches.

Secure data handling practices are also embedded throughout the tool, including encrypted storage for credentials and test data. Our focus on security means that teams can automate their testing processes with confidence, knowing their information is well protected.

Powerful Object Recognition

One of Ranorex’s standout features is its advanced object recognition capability. Ranorex prides itself on being able to interact with virtually any UI element, making it a versatile choice for testing desktop, web, and mobile applications.

Flexible API

Ranorex can fit easily into your tool stack through its comprehensive API. Our platform supports built-in integrations with a variety of Continuous Integration (CI) tools, version control systems, and other software development tools.

 

Start a Free Trial of Ranorex

Interested in using Ranorex for your QA testing automation? Start a free trial today to see how it works for yourself.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

How Does DesignWise Ensure Test Coverage and Efficiency?

DesignWise uses a model-based testing approach that automatically generates optimized test cases based on the defined parameters and rules. This ensures maximum coverage with minimal redundancy to significantly improve test efficiency.

What Kind of Support and Resources Are Available for Ranorex and DesignWise Users?

Both Ranorex and DesignWise provide extensive documentationtutorials, and community forums. We offer professional support services, including training, through Ranorex Champions.

What Should Be Considered When Selecting an Automation Tool?

You should always consider factors such as the software’s compatibility with your technology stack, ease of use, community support, licensing costs, and its ability to integrate with your CI/CD pipeline.

Can Automated Tests Replace Manual Testing?

QA testing automation can complement manual testing by handling repetitive, data-intensive, and regression tasks. But you’ll still need manual testing for exploratory, usability, and ad-hoc testing.

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