Test Automation: An Architected Approach

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Summary:

The test automation architecture championed here is based on the idea of automation code as an application in its own right. Code reuse, encapsulation (on many levels), recursion, object-oriented concepts, testing maturity and usability (of automation by non-technical business analysts) are covered.

In the world of automated testing, everyone throws around buzzwords like "data-driven," "data flows" and "error handling," but what does it take to produce automation that is efficient, maintainable and usable? 

Successful automated testing requires a considerable financial investment. Simply installing an automated testing tool and recording scripts may jumpstart the initial automated testing effort, but this approach will become difficult to maintain and therefore more expensive.

A more cost-effective solution is an architected solution. Providing the right architectural framework for automation development means that the automation code can be used for longer periods of time with less maintenance than a simple record/playback solution. This translates to a significant savings over the course of longer projects, and the ability to more thoroughly test an application with less employee overhead.

The test automation architecture championed here is based on the idea of automation code as an application in its own right. Code reuse, encapsulation (on many levels), recursion, object-oriented concepts, testing maturity and usability (of automation by non-technical business analysts) are covered.

The result of this architecture is reliable automation code with scripts that can last the entire life of the product (not just the project) and that can be used and enhanced by business analysts who have little to no knowledge of automated testing.

 

About the author

Dan Young's picture Dan Young

Dan Young is the Lead Automation Engineer for Schwab Performance Technologies, a part of Charles Schwab, Inc. Schwab Performance Technologies develops and supports a Portfolio Management Software that Investment Advisors use to track their clients investments. Dan holds a degree from West Virginia University Institute of Technology. In addition, he is a Segue Certified SilkTest Engineer, a Segue Certified SilkPerformer Engineer and has training and experience with Mercury Interactive’s QuickTestProfessional and LoadRunner. Before moving to a software company, Dan gained experience building and installing computers and did a stint in sales and purchasing for a hardware reseller. Dan’s software experience includes technical support, teaching training classes, on-site consulting, manual testing, automated testing (planning, architecture, coding and test case entry) and most recently load testing.

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