31 July 2017

5 features of the best software testing tools for cloud testing

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If you have not heard this before, allow me to enlighten you: not all software testing tools are created equal. In fact the "most popular" software testing tools in use today are usually are downright horrible at allowing users to realise the benefits of cloud testing. Surprised?

Don't be, because it seems that the power and, ultimately, value of cloud testing is yet to be grasped by IT executives. This KPMG study showed that only 1 in 4 of them thought that cloud testing would drive the search for software testing services vendors in the near future:
By researching the topic of software testing tools and cloud testing you can count yourself ahead of the curve! The real and undeniable consequence of this slow adoption of cloud testing are survey findings that paint a sad picture of the performance and productivity of the software testing profession globally:
Poor results of software testing programs are often the outcome of not knowing what you don't know or expecting different results despite executing the same process over and over.

What exactly is cloud testing?

Cloud testing (or cloud-based testing) is the next revolution of software testing and particularly, test automation. When combined with the right software testing tools, cloud testing allows users the speed and flexibility that traditional testing tools running on physical machines are simply not able to match.

I have racked my brain and spent hours trying to reinvent the wheel, but I cannot come up with a better definition of cloud testing than Wikipedia:
Cloud Testing uses cloud infrastructure for software testing. Effective unlimited storage, quick availability of the infrastructure with scalability, flexibility and availability of distributed testing environment reduce the execution time of testing of large applications and lead to cost-effective solutions.
Wikipedia
The cloud is doing to software testing what it has already done for software development: inject unstoppable speed into the development process. Development teams can now easily spin up and effortlessly scale 1 or hundreds of virtual machines to deploy their applications. This flexibility comes without the worry of capital expense forms, internal bureaucracy or lead times.

The right software testing tools that utilise the cloud can give your testing team the same flexibility with the added boost of speed.

Want to see how our cloud testing tools are being used to cut testing time to hours or minutes?


What problems does cloud testing solve?

That is a great question! While there are number of data points we can pore over to try and explain the problem with the current approach to software testing, the one that hits home immediately (and almost universally) is that the costs of software testing are rising:
Cost is almost always the overarching problem that IT decision-makers are worried about. Skyrocketing costs are usually the result of many underlying problems that can defined by many brackets, including:
  • Inefficient processes
  • Under-productive people
  • Inadequate tools and technologies
  • Dynamic and unstable business and technological landscape
  • Poor decision-making or implementation errors
The World Quality Report went a step further and gathered the industry's thoughts on the root cause behind this projected spike in software testing costs. The top 6 reasons included all well-known suspects:
I am yet to meet an IT decision-maker who cannot identify with at least 3 of these 6 symptoms. Where the conversation gets derailed, however, is the strategy through which these issues can be resolved. This inability of organisations to come to a consensus on this topic is resulting in catastrophic failures where not only is money being squandered, but reputations of otherwise smart professionals are being tarnished.

Adding to these unending problems is the issue of you don't know what you don't know. A recent European study found that for all the educational efforts of innovative software testing tool vendors, the people that sign the cheques are still operating in the dark:
I firmly believe that while cloud testing may not be the panacea to all the problems afflicting the software testing industry, it is definitely a major element in helping you solve the issue of speed and quality. Particularly when combined with model-based software testing and a serious dose of robust test automation.

Why are software testing tools important in cloud testing?

Along with processes and people, testing tools are an integral part of the triumvirate that boosts the speed and quality of software testing programs. Traditional testing tools required on-premise infrastructure to create, maintain and run tests. Every component of the traditional testing environment has to be purchased separately and people have to be employed just to keep the test environment alive.

With cloud testing tools like the Qsome Technology Platform, all that frustrating integration work is taken care of. You don't need to purchase hardware to go with the testing tool. You don't need to hire specialists just to run and maintain your test environment.

Testing tools like ours allow you to leverage cloud servers to create, maintain and run all your testing scripts, both manual and automated. Your testers won't be left waiting for servers to become free to run tests, because that infrastructure is always available, on demand. Think of it as using Uber instead of hiring a car. Good cloud testing solutions make it THAT simple.

Enterprise grade cloud testing solutions go one step further by building analytics into the software testing process. This allows your team to release to production only based on objective testing data, rather than because a manager thinks that the current batch is ready to release. Have a look at the metrics that good cloud testing solutions allow you track, out of the box. How much of this is possible with traditional testing tools?

This simplicity, convenience and speed is at the core of all good cloud testing tools. If the cloud testing tool that you are evaluating does not have every one of these attributes, then you should stop wasting your time and look at something that WILL deliver.

Great decisions are made with good dat. Our dashboard helps oyu track the effectiveness & efficiency of your manual and automated software testing.


So the 5 features common in software testing tools that enable cloud testing are?

It may surprise you to learn that the 5 features of a good software testing tool that will really help you with cloud testing are often the least talked about characteristics when vendors spruik their wares.

Testing tools that enable cloud-based testing include not only the tools, but also the test infrastructure. Good software testing tools provide you a turn-key solution that allows you to focus on creating robust and efficient tests, as quickly as possible. Such tools provide the extra oomph that you need to execute successfully.

Because we use model-based software testing when providing software testing services for our customers, we have been able to build the Qsome Technology Platform to leverage the full power of the cloud and cloud testing.

Specifically, the following 4 features of our software testing tools help to move and synchronise the wheels of an effective model-based testing program:
  • Dynamic user journey mapping: you can document, upload, edit and maintain user journeys right inside the testing tool, irrespective of how many times stakeholders change their minds.
  • Central knowledge repository: all test artefacts and results are stored in one place, which becomes the single source of truth. Nothing is misplaced by being stored on local drives and the people who need access can have it from any browser, on any device.
  • Cross-browser & cross-device automation: your users use your application across all browsers and all devices. Your testing tool must be able to help you get ahead by allowing the advantage of automating tests across browsers and devices without extra effort.
  • Load testing without effort duplication: these days load testing is imperative for any customer facing application, because customer churn will skyrocket if your load times are slow. Traditionally, load testing required a different team with specific know-how. However, good cloud-based software testing tools allow you to execute load tests using the same scripts that are used for functional test automation. Genius!
  • Testing tools & infrastructure on-demand: by using parallel testing technology on an infinitely scalable platform that is maintenance-free, your test team can focus on running high quality, robust tests, instead of worrying about how to keep the test server running.

Request a demo now if you want to see first hand how the Qsome Technology Platform could help you leverage cloud testing to increase the speed and quality of your releases. Right now, we're also offering a free strategy session to help set you on the right path to achieve your goals.
Or contact us on +61 8 8312 1287 or solutions[at]qsometech.com

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