Advances in software testing will enable quality assurance (QA) and development teams to work more cohesively and with increased speed, making the production cycle more efficient and resourceful. Tom Kowalski the chief architect at DaySmart Software shares three software testing trends that will gain momentum in 2021.
Aggressive software usage and adoption have proven invaluable for business continuity against the challenges of 2020. As a result, many software companies are rapidly evolving their offerings to support end-users as they navigate new challenges posed by the pandemic. However, during this evolution, software developers need to still ensure their programs run as intended.
Just like the advancements in programs that software companies are developing, the ways in which those programs are tested are also improving. As companies plan for the year ahead, here are three software testing trends that will gain momentum in 2021. Familiarizing with these trends will help software teams offer their customers top-of-the-line software solutions while remaining competitive against other like-minded software companies.
Massive Parallelization of Testing
With the rise of serverless and container technologies, it’s becoming easier to run load tests concurrently (versus subsequently). Development teams can now receive feedback sooner on how their programs are performing. Because the program being tested isn’t originating from a physical infrastructure within the organization but a cloud container, QA teams can run an application on multiple devices at once.Â
This is a major advancement for productivity, as previously QA teams had to run tests one after the other and only once all were complete would they be alerted to an error. With parallelized testing, QA teams will be able to identify and address errors on the spot. Â
However, while it is becoming easier to run parallel tests, many managed services providers (MSPs) are yet to update their billing methods to be in line with their practice. Their billing models are based on how many tests an organization runs at once, which hinders the strategy behind parallelization if software teams are going to be charged exorbitantly to execute it. If MSPs fail to update their billing models, they can expect developers to run tests themselves â€” a slower process that takes up time and resources that developers can use elsewhere.
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Availability of End-To-End Software Testing
Because developers don’t often control all integrations for their products, it used to be the case that QA teams would first complete a unit test then perform individual integration tests to ensure all of the components were compatible. Performing integration tests is increasingly important the more dependencies a program accrues.Â
While this process eventually yields the feedback developers need to finetune their core offerings, it isn’t particularly efficient. To test their application on integrations, QA teams need to set up a separate account with the integration provider to ensure the test doesn’t impact operations already in placeâ€”adding on time and expenses to the testing process.Â
Fortunately, more third-party providers now offer sandbox environments so that QA teams can test their programs within their existing accounts without any impact on their own production. The rise of cloud computing services has made it much easier to spin up ephemeral environments forÂ all the components of an application to beÂ tested end-to-end, with no disruptions in the run cycle.
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Continued Adoption of DevOps PrinciplesÂ
In the new year and beyond, development teams are going to be more responsible for writing the automated tests for their applicationsÂ themselves. With the testing responsibility shifted to development, QA teams will focus more on establishing the standards and platforms that enable developers to write more robust tests much faster and more reliably.Â
While QA teams were handed over a code once it was finished by developers earlier, they will now be more involved in the development process, working early on with the developers to confirm how the software will be tested is considered in production. This reallocation of responsibilities will empower a much more cohesive and thoughtful workflow, thereby accelerating organizations’ ability to deliver new programs.
As software developers look to increase efficiencies in the new year, a ripe area for improvement is their testing. Competitive companies will be those that recognize opportunities for increasing collaboration and expediting testing cycles, thereby earning their applications faster time-to-market and improved NOI.Â