5 months Opinion Pieces

5 Most Common Mistakes With Test Automation

In this short video, Felix - Senior Test Engineer at ROQ, shares his thoughts on some of the common mistakes that some organisations make when it comes to Test Automation - fortunately, with the right approach and expertise, they are easy to fix. If you would like to learn more about ROQ's approach to Test Automation and how we can help you, please get in touch.


1. Engaging Test Automation later in the lifecycle.

We often find that clients only engage automation towards the end of the software development lifecycle, treating automation almost as an after-thought and thus losing out on its full benefits. By shifting left and introducing automation earlier in the process we find that less bugs end up in the released software. Most teams are now using Agile methodology and therefore release software in feature size chunks, meaning that we can embed test automation as soon as the first feature is complete. This will lead to faster feedback loops and ensure that less bugs make it into the finished product. In a sentence - Automation first.

2. Focusing Test Automation in the wrong places

We find that many of our clients focus their Test Automation in the wrong places. For example, there is often an over-emphasis on testing through the user interface. This can result in slow, unstable test packs that require regular maintenance and provide little if any return on investment. ROQ would recommend considering testing the application at a much lower level (see Test Automation: The Right Way Up, for example, using API Testing, which provides more stability and almost immediate feedback - resulting in higher return on investment.

3. Mis-use of resources

Either using your most experienced technical resources to maintain automated test suites, or using less experienced staff to create automation frameworks. The former will lead to those resources getting bored and from a business perspective would be counterproductive, as their skills would be better used elsewhere. The latter would lead to more longer term problems, specifically around maintenance and framework enhancements. ROQ have worked with many clients that have little or no technical expertise and design bespoke automation frameworks with the end user in mind, thus reducing the barriers to automation and empowering others.

4. Tooling

Quite often we find that organisations have acquired a multitude of licensed tools, which usually come with a hefty price tag - some costing thousands per user per year. Additionally, we find that businesses are only using a fraction of the features available, providing little value for money. ROQ would recommend considering using open source tooling. Firstly, they incur little or no cost. Secondly, your toolset would be fit for purpose. And thirdly, we have found that from a recruitment perspective, it is easier to find people with skills in open source tools.

5. Best practice (...or lack of)

There is a lack of consideration for best practice in the area of Test Automation, especially in the areas of re-usability and maintainability. Creating a quick and dirty solution may give you short term results but will definitely create long-term technical debt. ROQ strive for excellence - it's one of our core values. We pride ourselves on using best practise approaches and recognised industry standards.


If you would like to learn more about some of the powerful ways in which we have helped our clients improve quality, increase the speed of delivery, mitigate risk and/or decreased costs through Test Automation, don't hesitate to get in touch on 01257 208890 or ask@roq.co.uk


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