QA outsourcing is generally considered a means to cut costs.
We are not saying cost shouldn’t be a criterion for QA outsourcing. We want to actually introduce a completely new perspective to this discourse. This perspective is the one related to EXPERTISE. The concept of “expertise” is especially pertinent in the case of Test Automation. In the course of this article, we will explain why QA outsourcing is the only way to usher in Test Automation in your organization.
Let’s examine what is actually done operationally in Test Automation:
- Write a Test case
- Run the cases at least once
- Documents and analyze the tests
- Based on the analysis select the automation candidates
- Write the script for these automation candidates
- Update and debug the script as and when required
Now let’s map these tasks by their nature to either coding or testing
- Write Test cases (neither)
- Run the cases at least once (testing)
- Documents and analyze the tests (testing)
- Based on the analysis select the automation candidates (testing)
- Write the script for these test cases (coding)
- Update and debug the script as and when required (coding)
As is evident from the mapping of the nature of work to the tasks in test automation, 3 out of the 6 tasks can be performed by a tester and 2 out of 6 by a coder. However, it should not be different people performing these tasks, since it would actually mean double the work. So in the QA platform, what is required is a unique skill set. Someone who has the mindset of a tester and the ability of a coder. Beyond the mindset and the ability, expertise is of paramount importance for a testing company. It is an expertise that software product companies rarely have in-house.
So what is this expertise we are talking about:
Expertise with Automation tools:
There are a number of automation tools available in the market. In order to be an expert automation tester, one needs to be skilled in at least a few such as Selenium, Cucumber, Jasmine, Protractor, and Mocha which are being used by some of the best QA companies.
Expertise in Automation frameworks:
In many ways, the automation framework is the power behind test automation. The efficiency of test automation depends on how well the automation framework has been designed. An ideal automation framework puts in place a series of re-usable scripts and cuts down the effort in test automation in the long run. Many QA testing companies in India lack expertise in designing a test automation framework.
Expertise in increasing the test coverage:
The metric for the measurement of test automation is test coverage. High test coverage means that Automation has been implemented well. But to achieve high test coverage requires an expert to choose the automation candidates judiciously. This is a skill that only comes with experience.
Expertise in Testing and script writing
As I have mentioned earlier, test automation requires a person with the mindset of a tester and the ability to write scripts. But this person should also have honed his skills by developing and running test scenarios and running automation scripts for these test scenarios.
It is very rare to find this expertise in a Software development setup. Therefore it makes complete sense to look for a QA outsourcing partner, with expertise in test automation, to really reap its rewards.