Want Test Automation Expertise? Do QA Outsourcing

QA outsourcing has generally been considered as a means to only save COST!

I am not saying cost shouldn’t be a criterion for QA outsourcing. I 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 course of this article, I 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:

  1. Write a Test case
  2. Run the cases at least once
  3. Documents and analyze the tests
  4. Based on the analysis select the automation candidates
  5. Write the script for these automation candidates
  6. Update and debug the script as and when required

Now let’s map these tasks by its nature to either coding or testing

  1. Write Test cases (neither)
  2. Run the cases at least once (testing)
  3. Documents and analyze the tests (testing)
  4. Based on the analysis select the automation candidates (testing)
  5. Write the script for these test cases (coding)
  6. 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 effect 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.  It is an expertise which software product companies rarely have in-house.

So what are this expertise we are talking about:

1. 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 a master in at-least some among Selenium, Cucumber, Jasmine, Protractor and Mocha.

2. Expertise in Automation frameworks:

In many ways, automation framework is the power behind the 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. To design a test automation framework one needs expertise.

3. Expertise in increasing the test coverage:

The metric for measurement of test automation is test coverage. High test coverage means that Automation has been implementing well. But to achieve a high test coverage requires an expert to choose the automation candidates judiciously. This is a skill which only comes with experience.

4. 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.

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