Practice makes man perfect – so goes the old adage. This is even more true for tests. While there could be few scripts to be executed on-demand for certain situations, as a rule of thumb attempt should be made to include automation test scripts with a continuous integration system. If there is no continuous integration system in place, it is absolutely a great idea to invest time and energy in creating one!
A good frequency of test execution helps in quickly establishing bad-builds when an error occurs. Comparing the test reports of successive runs, one can quickly ascertain when a test case first failed. This can save tremendous amount of time otherwise wasted in tracking the source of bugs.
As software ages, new features are introduced and sometimes these could break existing functionality. A daily build integration of test scripts preempts such avoidable errors. A test execution report with all “greens" and no “reds” or “yellows” is a tremendous confidence booster as well as discipline inducer for the development team. Knowing that a failed test in automated build will result in rejection of the task at hand, instills the discipline of practicing good software development practices in the team. And – such a report is a direct and very accurate indicator of the health of the software being developed.
A test script which is executed with the daily build matures early and proves to be a very important first gate for common errors. Without going through the rigor of being executed frequently a test script will remain weak and purposeless.
This concludes our multi-part article on Test Automation Systemic Investment Plan. Stay tuned for many such topics in future.