As technology keeps evolving, tasks have become more complicated and challenging for humans to perform manually. Many businesses have adopted software test automation at diverse levels of operations, and leaders of various industries have learned to recognize its value. Countless companies have gained tremendous efficiency by taking advantage of automation testing and consequently enabling quality control engineers to concentrate on higher-value responsibilities. However, not everything has been smooth and flawless; adopting automated testing comes with its challenges and bottlenecks. It’s necessary to keep in mind what the barriers are in order to address and overcome them. 

Test automation is an essential subset of software testing 

In a time where new software is launched faster than ever before, it’s reasonable to look for effective options that can respond to current needs. Adopting automated functional testing has become the answer to many issues by facilitating software validation and improving test coverage. Although we have learned that test automation is vital for software testing processes, its problems can’t be overrated. 

At TEAM International, we have plenty of experience working side by side with clients eager to improve the quality of what they’re currently doing. Moreover, we know what type of test automation typical problems they encounter. So, please don’t get discouraged and allow us to help you. 

Software test automation life cycle

What if IT efforts have fallen short? 

Each company has its own determinants to realize how much automation can be done within a specific amount of time. Sometimes, expectations are not satisfied, and efforts fall short. As bottlenecks get in the way, QC engineers can face innumerable troubles that can cause software test automation frameworks to fail. Nevertheless, detecting hurdles earlier helps to understand and provide better solutions to defeat them. 

Although several companies have adopted automated testing today, reaching high rates of automated test execution is a struggle among QA teams. Nevertheless, automation has become absolutely necessary. In fact, the global size of the automation testing market has been growing since 2019 starting at USD 12.6 and is expected to reach USD 28.8 billion by 2024. When attempts to succeed have been disappointing, take them as a lesson to improve and gain experience. There’s no need to quit right away; instead, let us guide you through some of the barriers that you may encounter, along with some tips to overcome them. 

5 software test automation obstacles you need to overcome 

Although the following are not the only test automation problems, they are some of the most common ones. It’s essential for businesses to be aware and have effective control over test automation challenges; doing so will prepare them to find solutions in advance. 

1. Time and cost 

You may wonder why these two factors could become a real barrier on your way to successfully adopting test automation. The answer is simple; the initial stage of automating testing is often expensive. When deciding to automate tests, keep in mind that investments include analyzing, designing, and building a test automation framework. 

Such work sometimes requires absorbing the cost of a product’s license, plus operating and facilitating hardware and software costs. Along with other complementary costs, the initial investment can urge you to give up. The same happens when it comes to timing, automating testing can take longer than expected. A wonderful way to minimize time is by making the right decisions on what framework, language, or tools to use before actually implementing them. 

How do you ensure that these issues don’t affect your decisions? Start by prioritizing the test cases according to your business needs, and remember that executing test automation in any project takes time. If you embrace the process with that idea, it will be easier to stay patient when things slow down. However, the wait will be worth it, and once you pass the initial phase, you’ll be saving time and money. It might not seem like it initially, but it’s the best cost-effective solution overall. 

2. Continuous test creation 

One of the most common pitfalls relies on test creation. Since tests must cover every combination of user activity and different sets of data, test scripts become repetitive and wearying. Every time a new iteration is started, further tests need to be written to provide full coverage, meaning that numerous new tests are required. Such monotonous tasks become labor-intensive and challenging to keep up for even the most reliable QC engineers. With bugs hidden in the minor details, any slip of attention can have significant consequences. 

How do you overcome mistakes? Avoid overburdening your automation engineers and find the right testing approach. As QC engineers determine an appropriate strategy, think of ways to reduce efforts in both implementation and maintenance of the test script and the test suite. Also, consider the metrics and effective ways to analyze test reports. In the end, persistence and hard work pay off. 

3. Wrong tools 

Many organizations have seen themselves rebooting their automated test efforts time after time due to incorrect selection of tools to execute their objectives. As simple as it may sound, aligning your automation goals to tools that work best for you is critical to achieve success. Many IT leaders don’t do enough research before choosing the right tool, and they tend to purchase commercial options based on a preliminary evaluation. In reality, when your business and technical expectations don’t match with the tool you acquire, you’ll give up using it and eventually fail in your efforts. 

How do you ensure you select the right tool? Since teams can’t have enough expertise in all the abundance of tools today, this becomes a challenging task. It requires a solid understanding of your company’s needs to look for the right features to best suit your demands. So, ensure you do in-depth research and run an adequate assessment to define your requirements based on the experience of experts who have already used the tools you’re considering. 

4. Test maintenance 

Whenever a change request is incorporated,  test script maintenance is required. This can be one of the biggest test automation problems. Tests created manually are incredibly fragile, which becomes a real issue when changes are applied. When the system needs any updates, there might be thousands of regression tests demanding evaluation, and engineers must spend time understanding the consequence of the changes. So, test maintenance is error-prone and time-consuming. 

To avoid further complications in the process, it’s important to identify the scripts that need to be updated. Then, ensure they’re recognized when incorporating the change in an application, followed by a proper test script update. 

Automated test scripts in software development

5. Corporate culture  

Even today, many organizations live in a world of manual testing; as you can see, making the transition to automated testing is not as simple as it may sound. Despite all the barriers that can arise through the journey, beginning with a culture change can help an organization stay afloat when things get complicated. 

First, get your people to believe in automation, show them why it is significant and how they can benefit from it. As they realize that the current setup isn’t working, prove to them that this transformation will reduce manual errors and improve quality. With a bigger vision in mind of what can be accomplished, ensure your team is committed to automation. 

Embracing a culture of automation will elevate your testing efforts and produce higher speed and quality across the pipeline. For a transformation to successfully occur, those assigned to lead the way must practice what they teach. Ensure senior engineers leading teams believe and work towards successful test automation. To advance the culture change, develop a program where continuous learning is encouraged. Understand what’s new in the industry and analyze how your team can embrace the latest updates. 

Automation of software testing

Despite the barriers, is test automation worth it?  

In today’s digital world, the ability to develop, test, and launch products and services instantly and continually has become critical to remain competitive. Although automating testing comes with its challenges, the benefits are worth the process. To make it even more effective, stakeholders can take advantage of extensive automation coverage and obtain more accurate information around risks to high-value features. Consequently, they will make better decisions at the business level. Let’s talk about companies that were “born digital” and are taking advantage of the effectiveness of automation; they now leverage test automation extensively to roll back failures in a matter of seconds, facilitating constant and quick fixes and mitigating business risk. In the end, the automation journey, despite the barriers, is worth it and highly beneficial for your organization. 

With TEAM International, companies can overcome all those barriers easily and quickly. Our QA center of excellence has developed ready-made test automation frameworks that can be easily integrated into your projects. We select the right tools, align business goals with technical priorities, and create engaging user experiences. In addition, we can quickly deploy your software to market across multiple platforms and devices. Contact us today and let us answer your questions.