As a tester, one may stand on the crossroads of effective test automation. From planning to execution, challenges are bound to obstruct the testing process. These may be many, including some of the key challenges such as:
- Test case mapping-
A major roadblock that a tester generally faces is during the mapping of the test case itself. What to test and how to test becomes one of the major concerns during test automation. The things to be kept in mind here, eminently constitute the interpretation of functional requirements into coded automated tests; what needs to be included and automated for optimal resource utilization. This also includes mapping and tracing the whole test coverage via the traceability matrix in order to identify any change in the requirement for the future.
- Automating the whole testing process-
This is a common challenge that testers face wherein they think that only automating the test case would reap the desired outcome. Automating the test cases is not enough. The whole testing process needs to be automated which begins from the inception of the project itself till the end of the whole testing cycle. In the end, the test reports or even cleaning the test data after execution needs to be automated, thus covering the whole testing process.
- UI test automation-
The tricky aspect in test automation lies when a tester tests the UI thinking of it as foolproof testing. But UI tests are extremely fragile to maintain as well as really slow during execution. Since a lot of variables are involved, the challenge is to maintain a controlled test environment keeping all the test factors pristine.
- Managing the test environment-
As mentioned, to keep the test factors pristine, one needs to manage the test environment coherently which at times becomes difficult. To keep the tests running for a long period of time, the application environment, test data and even the execution of tests on the required platform or device becomes challenging. With DevOps especially, which becomes an end-to-end pipeline, managing the test infrastructure becomes a must.
These are just a few out of the many challenges that a tester may come across during test automation. Keeping the end goal in mind, a tester needs to understand what essentially needs to be automated for it to be cost-effective as well as feasible. With the Agile/DevOps environment, automation has become an amalgamated process where a tester takes up the role of a developer too, and vice-versa. Therefore, one needs to be extremely vigilant of the whole ecosystem of test automation in order to clear the roadblocks towards quality assurance.