Test Automation Foundations

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Total Chapters



Course content

5 Chapters25m
This chapter walks you through the key objectives and major benefits of test automation. It also emphasizes the potential risks when applying a new automation solution, such as the underestimated costs and changes in testing processes.
Test Automation Objectives, Benefits, and Risks

This course introduces the foundations of test automation that you should know before applying the technology to your projects, from the objectives, benefits, risks, core automated testing types to useful tips for choosing the right automation solution. 

In four chapters, we will walk you through the following:

  • Test automation objectives, benefits, and potential risks
  • Key factors and considerations for applying test automation successfully
  • Test automation pyramid – essential levels of automated testing to implement
  • Generic test automation architecture and why it matters

Chapter 1 - Test Automation Objectives, Benefits, and Risks

Test Automation Objectives, Benefits, and Risks


To start this course, we'll begin with chapter 1 about test automation's objectives. Not only for testers or developers but also for people who participate in the software development process, it's important to know the typical purposes, potential benefits, as well as possible risks of test automation.


Now, let's get to know some basic concepts. In software testing, test automation is one or more of the following tasks: using tools to control and set up preconditions, executing tests, then comparing the outcome with the expected result. Remember, when applying test automation, objectives may vary from each team based on their real scenarios and needs. Before getting more in-depth, spend 5 seconds thinking about what people use test automation for.


You're right! Among those purposes, here are 3 common objectives that most teams define when applying test automation. First, test automation improves the efficiency of testing by supporting manual test activities throughout the test process. It helps your team reduce the burden of repetitive work such as running regression tests when changes appear, thus it frees you to design new tests or explore the products on production. Second, test automation automates activities that cannot be executed manually. For example, adding one thousand entries to your database, for performance testing, is a pain to do manually.


Furthermore, test automation increases the reliability of testing. For a better understanding, imagine yourself as a tester who needs to test the log-in form. If a process of testing the log-in form is done the same way each and every time, then the reliability of that process will remain constant over time. By writing one automated test script, you can test your log-in forms in multiple environments with different scenarios and times, hence increasing the reliability of the application under test.


Now you've discovered how test automation helps you achieve your testing ultimate goals. Simply acquiring a tool does not guarantee success. Each new tool introduced into an organization will require effort to achieve real and lasting benefits. There are potential benefits and opportunities with the use of tools in testing, but there are also risks.


Let's walk through some outstanding benefits that your team will gain when applying test automation. At first, test automation comes into play to give early and frequent feedback about the software quality. As the tests are run by tools, you can now also eliminate the risks of including biased or subjective evaluation.


In addition, using automated tools reduces human efforts in real-time, remote, or parallel tests. As a result, more tests can be run faster. For instance, a unit test can only run within milliseconds with the assistance of test automation. Last but not least, test automation enhances the consistency and repeatability for the fact that tests are executed by the tool in the same order and in the same frequency. For instance, you may apply nightly build to run regression testing or sanity testing on Staging or Production.


Keep in mind that a successful plan lies solely on how software development teams utilize test automation to maximize productivity and mitigate the risks that may occur. Everything has two sides, so does test automation. Besides the advantages, there are many concerns when using tools to support testing. Let me take you through this part.


First, the time, cost, and effort for the initial introduction of a tool may be under-estimated. For example, your team may need guidance from external automation experts for setup and training. To achieve significant and continuing benefits from the test automation, you may also need to change your current test process, not to mention make some continuous improvement throughout your tool implementation process.


Another problem occurs when the version control of test assets may be neglected since your production code does not fit with the test automation code. I know you may feel overwhelmed right now, but hang on, we still have the last two important risks to pay attention to.


There is a wide range of market offerings, from open-source automated testing tools to free and commercial versions. With the open-source tools, your team may face the problem when it is suspended since there are no longer updated, or new features added. With commercial tools, the vendor may provide a poor response for support, upgrades, and defect fixes.


Further details about these types of tools coming soon in the later chapters. To summarize, chapter 1 introduces the objectives, benefits, and risks that you need to focus on when evaluating and selecting a test automation solution.

Chapter 2 - Critical Factors Influencing The Test Automation Success

Chapter 3 - Test Automation Pyramid: A Must-Know Automation Concept

Chapter 4 - The Generic Test Automation Architecture

Chapter 5 - Summary: Test Automation Foundations


Materials include

  • 25 minute on-demand video

  • Full lifetime access

  • Certificate of completion

    Coming soon