Thought Leadership
8 minutes

For a long time, manual testing has been a normal and commonplace practice for any type of software development project. The Quality Assurance (QA) process would involve manually checking to execute checklists before every new project release. The process behind creating those checklists would often be error-prone, expensive, and time-consuming. 

Automated quality assurance (AQA) emerged as a way to use automated tools to test the software being developed and report on the results, which can remove time-consuming tasks that were previously carried out by manual testers. 

However, automated testing is not a universal solution as it cannot fully replace all aspects of manual testing, but it comes with a lot of benefits for both the development team and the client.

In this guide, we’d like to share our experience with AQA and how it brought huge gains for our clients and quality assurance teams. 

Key Elements of Automated Testing

In short, automated testing is the application of certain software tools that are able to replace some of the processes of software validation. Most modern software projects include automated testing from their inception, and it's viewed as an integral part of the project.

An automated testing plan is usually created to follow the regular software development roadmap as its focus is on software features. Using automated testing, the QA team can focus on continuous delivery (CD) as it becomes a part of a large deployment pipeline. 

Continuous integration (CI) is the practice of running automated tests every time the code changes to verify the quality of the code and show whether changes won’t break the established features. The adoption of automated testing has become a key issue for any company wanting to become more agile and have a stable pipeline of software updates. Here are some of the biggest benefits of automated testing:

  1. Faster Development and Delivery
  2. Cost-Saving Practices
  3. Higher Accuracy and Quality
  4. Increased Productivity
  5. Faster Feedback and Bug Spotting 
  6. CI/CD and DevOps Implementation

Types of Tests We Recommend You To Automate

Unit Tests

Covering individual functions is made easy with unit tests. These types of tests will assess expected inputs and whether they match expected outputs. Banking, fintech, and expense management software are all examples of code with sensitive calculations that should be covered by unit tests. 

End-to-End Tests

E2E tests are extremely valuable for any type of digital product as they simulate user experience across different levels of the product. Implementing these tests can help companies detect any bug or problem a user would face before they happen. 

E2E of tests are great for capturing and replaying user interactions. And if a software product lacks any kind of automated testing coverage, using E2E testing will be able to examine the performance of its key business flows. 

Performance Tests

The performance of any type of software is determined by its speed and responsiveness. Using performance metrics, such as the page load time, time to receive search results, and the time to first render. Performance tests also help to develop assumptions for the test cases and can show the team if there’s an issue in the flow.

Integration Tests

When the application is using a third-party service, there is an integration test that can be used to test the performance of the third-party dependencies. Integration tests and unit tests use similar testing tools and are sometimes used as an alternative to E2E. 

How Softjourn Can Help

With AQA experts with deep experience in Fintech, Ticketing, and Media & Entertainment, Softjourn can help you conduct both Manual and Automated Testing. 

There are several ways to incorporate your QA automation into any of your projects. These include developing tests from scratch with your in-house team or software provider team, or by using codeless software designed for non-coders. Regardless of your approach, we recommend using a four-step process to ensure you are on the right track to success.

1. Select The Right Testing Tools

Depending on the type of project and its tech stack, choosing testing tools is not always a simple decision. For certain types of projects, we advise our clients to conduct a proof of concept, to understand what to keep in mind for advancement, and not miss any important details related to their project.

2. Define Automation Scope

The scope of automation is the area of application that will be tested. We work with our clients to make a list of their application’s important features, and common functionalities, and test situations with a large amount of data, to understand the technical complexity. 

3. Plan, Design, and Develop

After defining the automation scope, we create a document that contains all of the necessary information related to automation tools, in-scope and out-of-scope items of automation, the timeline for scripting and execution, and a detailed list of deliverables for automation testing. 

4. Execution and Maintenance

The final step is to execute the tests once they are ready and figure out which scripts require data before they can be set to run. Maintenance is essential at this point and beyond since testing will assess whether the new functionalities added to the software are working on not. Every time a new script is added, maintenance should be activated to ensure high levels of effectiveness. 

AQA Illustration

Client’s Case Studies: Our Approach 

AQA for Spend Management Solution

About the client

Our client has a fully-integrated travel and expense management software solution. Their solutions work to automate manual tasks, get deep and immediate visibility, and allow for better control of spending for various types of businesses. The client wanted to use automated QAs to shorten the amount of time needed for testing and validation when there were changes to the product. 

For this type of project, there were no good alternatives to using AQA since they would require a lot more testers and resources. Automation is a common and smart choice for expense management companies as it ensures the quality of the software. 

Benefits of AQA for Spend Management

The benefits of automation are best seen when it comes to regressive testing, which helps cut testing time and simplify the testing process. Changes to the code can affect the normal functionality of an application, and regression testing ensures that there will be no unexpected errors or bugs. 

The benefits of using AQA on this project: 

  • Smarter allocation of human resources
  • Cost and time savings
  • Use of a small team to achieve frequent releases

Future Plans for AQA

The team is slowly growing and expanding, meaning that more QAs are needed. We will go from continuous integration (CI) to continuous deployment (CD) because this is the optimal way to move forward with the project and ensure regular software deployment. 

AQA for a Fintech Company

About the Client

Our client is a New York-based fintech company founded in 2006. They are a SaaS provider in the workforce spend management industry and their product is a platform that operates on the web and mobile (iOS/Android), mainly serving as expense management for corporate cards, the most common being Visa prepaid.

When & Why They Used AQA

Before the product was tested, all the processes were manual. QA started building the processes, and once the team expanded, they started researching various automation testing options, including Softjourn’s AQA. 

The team from Softjourn was proactive by doing routine testing and working on backend API testing and UI testing. Automated tests significantly cut the testing time, which the client appreciated so much that they added AQA to the team. 

Benefits of AQA

The client quickly realized the benefits of using AQA: 

  • More automated processes
  • Less time spent on the project
  • Faster code delivery
  • Developers can spot errors more quickly

The automation team is always trying to find better and more ways to automate client’s processes to offer them more efficiency and stability. Our client decided to make half of their AQA team in-house and the other half a Softjourn team. The team is working now to build a system where they could automate testing for the major part of the client’s application.

AQA for an Organizational Development Company

About the client

Our client is a US-based publisher and provider of innovative products, training, and services for individual and organizational development. They are known for creating scientific and research-driven personality assessments for companies of all sizes. 

Benefits of AQA for the client

AQA comes with a number of benefits for both clients and developers. For this project, automation testing reduced the overall duration and cost of manual testing, especially since more than five developers were working on the same project. 

During regression testing, the automated QA compared to standard QA led to approximately three times fewer hours spent on testing, which enabled clients to do more frequent releases of the software. 

From a developer’s professional perspective, the time buffer for code refactoring is much higher because of autotest's fast identification of potential issues. This way, developers can work on more complex solutions without losing much time on the project. The client was very happy with AQA's services during this project, and they continue to keep them within their development team. 

AQA for an Expense Management Company

About the Client

Our client is an expense management provider that provides accounts payable automation solutions. Their company was founded in 2001 and is based out of San Francisco they provide cloud-based expense report software that automates and streamlines the entire expense management workflow, from the point of purchase to accounting and reimbursement.

Benefits of AQA for Expenses

By involving SDLS in the early stage issue detection, Tallie had a less time-consuming delivery process. AQA also increased product safety and offered its consumers a much better product.

With AQA, our clients feel that it brings more trust and confidence when developing a few functionalities since all of them can be covered with auto scripts. Instead of completely relying on a regression run, AQAs have a chance to find every bug and report them before they even become an issue.

AQA for a Ticketing Company

About the Client

Our client is a large ticketing platform with many moving and interacting parts. This makes testing quite challenging and manual regression testing nearly impossible, regardless of the size of their testing team.

Softjourn’s AQA team created automated test cases to cover many testing scenarios for our client. We made sure to support these tests to make sure our client’s team could run them at any time. This saved a lot of time for their testing team and helped to ensure the system would work well during every development stage.

Benefits of AQA for Ticketing

AQA has been proven to reduce the number of incidents and bugs reported by clients while decreasing regression. It also helped the client resolve a sizable backlog and continue project development. 

The client said Softjourn’s team was very reliable, and we managed the project as planned. The client told us that our team was proactive and provided services of high quality, especially helpful when removing roadblocks during the project. Because of a great team, delivery was well managed, and everything ran smoothly.

We will continue to create and support our automation framework for Secutix. We are currently considering innovative ideas to upgrade the framework using new tools and approaches.

We Know How to Do Automation QA

The team at Softjourn has extensive experience developing and testing various software solutions, including AQA. We provide customized solutions for web apps, mobile apps, CRM platforms, expense management solutions, and fintech applications

Whether you need a small team or support for CI/CD, Softjourn’s expert QA team knows how to help you reach your business goals. Contact us and see why top industry leaders trust our developers.