When you’re focused on developing the best possible product and taking it to market, you may not have the resources to devise or implement a new automation testing strategy. Why recruit or train internally when you can outsource and find the exact skills you need today? If you seek out the right partner, you’ll be able to draw on their experience, and build a strategy for success.
Before you begin your search, take the time to answer this question: Why are you automating? Your motivations will inform your expectations and the goals you set. Are you trying to accelerate the time to market? Maybe you’re keen to widen your coverage? Automation can’t provide complete coverage, but it can lessen the burden on your manual testers and allow them to engage in more exploratory testing.
What’s a good fit for you?
It’s important to have a clear picture of what you need from your outsourcing partner. Obviously, experience with test automation is a vital prerequisite. Make sure that they have the necessary skillset to cope with your project. If you know you need performance testing and functional UI testing, for example, make sure your potential partner is qualified to deliver. Depending on your industry and the specifics of the software you’re developing, some kind of domain experience might be needed. An understanding of compliance or regulations could save a lot of time.
Take a look at your technology stack as well. Can you find a partner with tools, frameworks, and accelerators that will integrate smoothly? If they’re able to bring some, or all, of the technology you need with them, then it will help things to take off quickly and it will save you some expense.
One of the key benefits of outsourcing is that you gain access to expertise. Make sure that you take advantage by including your partner in the planning phase and asking for their insight. Make them part of the analysis, as you try to identify the best automation candidates and organize them into a prioritized list. Listen to their advice on the best automation tools and frameworks for accelerating your scripting, test execution, and reporting.
When you’re ready, you can use your automation list to work out a plan based on the tools you want to use. How much effort and time will be required to write each script? Set up an accurate test environment, to be fully prepared for the rollout. With strong, collaborative planning, you’re giving the project its best chance for success.
Optimize and refine
It’s very important to remember that your test strategy should be fluid. You will want to make changes, find optimizations, and refine. Build your foundation with extensibility in mind and design scripts that can be easily modified later on by any team member. Modularity can cut your effort, as you can reuse common functions in new scripts. Build in some error-handling and try to ensure that scripts can be run repeatedly without a lot of input.
The knowledge, experience, and technology that you need is out there. It’s worth taking some time to find the right outsourcing partner to deliver it.