What Is Continuous Testing and Why It Is So Popular?
Continuous Testing (CT) is a highly touted, repetitive process that allows for innovative apps and services to be deployed faster and more efficiently
21:32 19 May 2020
Pushing product to the market faster is key in the highly competitive business world, and CT allows faster, accelerated releases that focus on quality.
What is CT?
Software and apps are scaling higher, offering products to billions of potential users worldwide. When a security bug is found or new features need to be rolled out, continuous testing is one of the measures that can be put in place to speed up the testing process.
In a world of manual and automated testing, CT allows for a nice middle approach that:
- Provides rapid feedback
- Reduces risks
Automated tests will be incorporated into the product pipeline that allows for these tests to run separate from unit testing. The testing also works alongside performance testing services like QAwerk so that all testing can be performed in a way that is harmonious.
Testing begins when new source code is added and a CT process is initiated. Each build will be tested and reports will go through to the development team before the build hits production.
New code modules can be rapidly tested in a test environment to analyze the new committed code and determine what impact the new code has on the code’s existing functionality.
Testing results cannot lead to any code correction until the reports are generated and handed to the development team. The team of developers will need to parse through the reports to determine the next steps to take.
Developers may find that the bugs being reported are low risk and have a very minimal chance of impacting the production phase. It's up to developers and internal teams to decide what the best course of action is for the tests that they receive.
High priority issues may need to be corrected before the software is pushed back to the market because it may be a security issue that can
lead to lost users, revenue and reputation. If a data leak is a result of the issue, it can lead to potential liability issues for the developer, too.
Why is Continuous Testing So Popular?
Continuous testing is so popular, especially among top-tier developers, because it is a beneficial process that makes testing faster. The key benefits of continuous testing are:
- Speeds up release cycles. Release cycles are improved with automated testing which allows for developers to rapidly respond to market changes. Updates are released more often, and errors are rapidly resolved as a result.
- Test coverage improvements. CT allows for implementing improvements faster with larger test coverage. CT identifies critical errors faster and allows for fixes to be pushed earlier.
- Faster feedback. Since code is tested earlier and reports are provided to developers, feedback comes in faster. Feedback allows for existing features and errors to be identified, discussed among teams and measures can be put in place to move forward with deployment. Perhaps one feature has too many issues which puts the company at too high of a risk, so the feature is scrapped in the coming release.
- Cost reduction. CT will also lead to cost and liability reduction. Lower risks and faster development cycles reduce overall business costs and can increase revenue, too.
Unlike many aspects in development, CT is quick and easy to implement. The goal of continuous testing is to make life easier, and it does this by being able to be implemented into the current development pipeline quickly.
Development opportunities exist when testing is an integral part of the development lifecycle.
The types of automated tests that should be included in the continuous testing include security, API, performance and integration tests. CT should be put in place during the entire software development lifecycle and be a “part” of your testing process.
Automated testing should also have manual testing to check for issues that are outside of the scope of the automated tests.
Business risk coverage can be better understood when automated testing is in place. If a potential release candidate is too risky, the tests should identify these risks and allow developers and managers to reassess the release of a product. Continuous testing ensures that there’s a safety net in place that lowers the risks of releasing new software iterations rapidly.