During the early years of application development, the testing phase was usually conducted after the conclusion of the development phase. This process was time-consuming as whenever a bug was detected in the application, it had to be rolled back to the development phase. Sometimes companies took several months to finish the application development lifecycle. Moreover, this process became even more troublesome as the complexities of the application began to rise with the advancement of technology. So, companies started to use modern technologies like Agile testing to integrate the testing process with the development process. In this article, we will learn some of the best practices of Agile testing that will help companies to produce high-quality applications for their end users.
The basics of Agile Testing
Agile testing is based on the idea that the testing phase should be continuously integrated with the coding stage. The integration between these two processes helps the developers to detect the bugs as soon as possible. The quick detection of bugs is in turn useful for the easy and efficient debugging process. The quick detection and removal of errors from the application help to quickly push it toward the production phase. Before Agile testing, the traditional approach to application development was known as the waterfall process. In the waterfall method, the next step would not begin before the completion of the previous phase. So, it was not only very inefficient but also very ineffective considering the rising needs of the modern application development industry.
Types of Agile Testing
Over time, a series of methodologies have arrived for the Agile testing processes. Let us take a detailed look at some of the most popular approaches for Agile Testing:
1. Behaviour-Driven App Development: Behavior-driven application development is based on the functioning of acceptance test-driven development to improve it. Using the structure of this Agile methodology the developers can attach the current business outcomes to the application development process. Behavior-driven app development also helps developers to create and frame test cases according to the intended business outcome. The first step in this process is to define the behavior of the application.
2. Acceptance Test-Driven App Development: This is a test-driven application development process. In this form of application development, all the processes are conducted from the customer's point of view. This means with this form of Agile methodology; the companies can not only integrate the development and testing teams but also join the customers as well. It is very easy for developers to create test cases with this workflow. This is because it gives them a clear understanding of the customer's requirements and how the end product should turn out.
3. Exploratory Testing with Agile: Exploratory testing involves verifying some of the important elements present in an application. Exploratory testing is an important part of the application development process because it consists of certain errors that are usually overlooked by automated test cases. The developers must remember that the test cases for exploratory testing will not be scripted beforehand. Instead, the developers will develop these scripts according to their requirements as they continue to explore the application.
4. Session-Based Testing with Agile Methodology: Session-based testing is an advanced Agile methodology that aims to refine the functioning of exploratory testing. This testing process adds a definite structure to the test case framing process to eliminate errors that can arise due to misled creativity. Session-based testing creates a charter before beginning the application development process and also ensures an uninterrupted testing session. After the completion of every charter, the entire test case will be reported, and the manager will be debriefed regarding the test outcome. This process also ensures that there are no backlogs building in the application development process.
Best Practices for Agile Testing
Now, let us discuss some of the best practices that can help the developers to improve the quality of the application with the help of Agile testing:
1. Try to Avoid Functional Complexity
Complexities in the Agile test cases can reduce the efficiency of the test cases. Moreover, it becomes very hard to keep track of complex test cases. So, it is a good idea for the developers to maintain the simplicity of the test cases. It will be a good idea to create individual test cases for every element present in the application. Developers can also use different tools to keep an activity log for the application testing process. This will help them to go back in time for the debugging processes.
2. It is important to Focus on the Goals
Setting specific goals in the application development process with Agile methodologies helps the developers to maintain the targets for the company. The goals must be set while the developers are creating the testing plan and the development strategy for the application. It is also important to create a business-oriented team that will help the developers and testers to stick to these goals. While setting the goals, the developers must have a clear idea about the latest market trends and the requirements of their end users. This will customize the application according to modern standards.
3. Ensure Repeated Testing Processes
Some of the common terms related to the application testing process are false positive and false negative results. These errors can arise when the system reports an error while the application is functioning perfectly well and vice versa. The best way to avoid errors due to it is to repeat the test cases multiple times and verify the results of the previous reports. So, one of the best practices related to Agile testing is to execute the test cases multiple times before proceeding to the next stage of the application development lifecycle.
4. Maintain The Simplicity of the Test cases
The Term simplification of test cases means that the developers must maintain a steady workflow during the application testing process. It is not only beneficial for keeping track of all the processes but also helps to quickly finish the test cases. The testing team should create a plan related to the application testing process before implementing it. During this planning session, they should also consider some of the unforeseen circumstances that might arise during the testing phase. The developers should also have a backup plan ready that they must implement when there is something gravely wrong with the application.
5. Presence of Application knowledge
To properly test all the elements of an application the testing team must have a definite knowledge of it. This means the testers must know the application's purpose, the intended user base, and how the company plans to portray it. It is also advised that the testers must have a basic knowledge of all the technologies that the development team will use for creating the application. This process will help to improve the synchronization between the testing and development teams of a company.
6. Maintain the Sanctity of the Codes
The codes of an application built the backbone of the entire development lifecycle. This is because they not only influence the functioning of all the elements of the application but also play a vital role in the testing process. So, it is very important for the developers to continuously ensure the proper functioning of the code base. Companies should also invest a proper amount of time and resources in maintaining the codes in the database. This is because in most cases the development team will reuse a huge portion of the code base for future projects.
7. Have a Definite idea About the TDD Needs
Test-driven development is one of the modern application development strategies that play a critical role in improving the standard of the final application. So, the Agile testing teams need to have a definite idea about when and where to implement this process. Moreover, it is also important that companies must implement it properly to utilize its full potential. There are various documents available online about the best practices related to test-driven development. For the proper implementation of test-driven development, the companies must also have proper knowledge about the user groups and how to expand them.
Role of Tools and Platforms in Agile Testing
The continuous integration of development and testing can be overpowering for some developers. This is prominent for new testers in this segment of the application development process. However, there are various tools and platforms available in the market that help in the seamless execution of this process. These tools also help developers to improve the quality of the development process. This is because they grant access to hundreds of different devices through cloud servers. Before integrating a tool in the primary test bench, the developers must verify that it is perfect. This means it must be suitable according to their needs and serve the intended purpose. It is also crucial to verify that the tool supports all the features and integrations that the developer is most comfortable with. We can further improve our understanding with the help of LambdaTest as a reference point.
In simple terms, LambdaTest is a cloud platform for testing web applications and to verify whether a modern web application is cross-browser compatible. For beginners, cross-browser compatibility testing ensures that the web application does not show a loss in performance due to changes in the operating system, browser version, or device hardware specifications. Using this platform, the developers can also multiply the speed of the test execution process. This is possible with the help of parallel test cases. Parallel test cases allow the developers to execute different testing configurations at the same time. LambdaTest also helps developers to check whether a local web application is functioning properly. This platform plays a critical role in improving the accuracy of the test cases. It integrates multiple reports from emulators, simulators, and even hundreds of real devices.
So, we can conclude that Agile testing is one of the most important components of the modern application development process. Without the proper integration of Agile methodologies, the developers cannot deliver high-quality web applications in the stipulated time. In this competitive application development industry, it is very important to not only maintain the standard of the application but also deliver it in a short time. Agile methodologies also help developers to initiate automated test cases. Automation testing is yet another important component of the modern testing process. It is also very important for developing companies to spread proper awareness regarding the importance of these processes. Lastly, the developers should also understand the role of a perfect tool or platform in the modern application development process.