Getting the right expertise is the key to success in any business and that’s no less relevant when it comes to mobile app testing and test automation. It is important to remember that at the end of the day, used tools and technology are just enablers. And those will work for you as well as your engineers and QA folks can utilize those in their daily work. So, what are the top criteria for the superb QA folks that you should consider to have in your team?
As this is the last blog in series of 10 Best Practices for Mobile App Testing we started early October, we’ll be discussing briefly the expertise and characteristics that are must-to-have to make your testing effort successful. Even though mobile app testing can be tedious, it’s vital to the success of an app. In the long run, companies that rely on the best resources in their testing save time fixing those nasty bugs in their apps, games and services, but more importantly, save money. And superb resources save you even more!
1. Passion for 5 stars only!
Without the passion to get your mobile app super robust and work as expected, by everyone – developers, testers and users – you are just delivering average. In some cases, it may be enough but in today’s competitive application landscape average doesn’t score anymore. A superb test automation individual really cares about the quality of the application and encourages others to do the same. In this test automation for your mobile apps/games is crucial – however, there are important things to consider when and what should be automated. A superb test automation individual is truly capable to recognize to clearly separate what should be automated and what not.
2. Tech-savvy Approach
It is popular to have testing teams staffed with people who have little or no programming skills/knowledge at all. Actually, there is a good reason for that nowadays: Despite many of testing methods and frameworks are programming-intensive, there are plenty of options today with different automatic exercisers, recorder-and-playback approaches and even with test automation frameworks that only require common sense. Mobile app testing should not be driven by tools and technology – those are just enablers – but people should drive the test automation.
3. Thinks Big
The ideal tester has deep insights into how the users will use the application – starting from download to full use of it. By thinking big, QA folks focus on use cases, usability and user experience – managing all of this while building their test cases/scripts for the mobile app. Naturally, this can a very challenging task but capability ‘think big’ makes superb QA tester stand out from the masses!
4. Thinks Small
Superb test automation individuals find out all little things that others (including end-users) miss or ignore. Testers see symptoms, not bugs, and both of those can range from harmless to catastrophic. It is only after the symptom is fully explained (e.g. app thoroughly debugged) that you have the right to say if the bug was severe or minor. A superb tester is able to focus on the most fine-grained details of use, usability and user experience, and find out how symptom shows up. This is important information for app developers in order to fix it.
Superb testers notice all small and big things and use those to understand and communicate issues that will cause those failures. However, accountability of test automation individual is more important; they set appropriate expectations for their testing effort and take accountability for its success. A superb test automation individuals also hold others – e.g. programmers – to deliver their accountabilities.
6. Able to Focus
The testers’ world is more chaotic than programmers. Superb test automation individuals recognize that 90% of testing doesn’t provide any (bad) results – and only that 10% delivers results that need all their attention. Some testers give up after seeing 90% tests passing and some testers are able to focus on that problematic tithe. Also, it is very important to be able to focus on testing while the development is ongoing. If testing is started once the application is ready, lots of time will be wasted and end-users need to wait for your app.
7. Able to Deliver
Testers always have many irons in the fire. Testers have to be flexible and be able to drop things when blocked and move on to another thing that’s not blocked. A compulsive need to achieve closure is not a bad attribute in a programmer – but it is a crucial attribute in a tester!
8. Diplomatic to Non-Compromise
Typically, a desirable attribute in a person is an ability to do compromises and prioritize – at least wisely. However, mobile app quality is not a subject to be compromised – and test automation folks should understand it. There will always need to prioritize and balance against internal issues, strategic testing goals and tactical imperatives. But compromising on the quality of your app will end up disappointing app’s users and that can cumulate as a catastrophic consequence.
9. Intellectually Skeptical
Superb test automation individual is never hostile. The programmer can be effective even they are hostile and anti-social – but this doesn’t work for testers. Test automation folks need to be sensitive when bringing up the issues that were found in the app – the programmer’s masterpiece. Diplomacy, tact, a ready smile – all work to the independent tester’s advantage.
10. Test Automation Hungry!
Humans are not infallible. We’re not – and never will be as accurate and precise as machines – and automatic tests. Even the most conscientious tester will do basic mistakes during manual testing. Automated tests perform the same steps precisely every time they are executed and never forget any details. Also, (nearly) everyone hates repetitive work. Many software testing tasks can be laborious and time-consuming to do manually. In addition, a manual approach is not the most effective in hunting for defects.
The fact, however, is that superb test automation individual understands the need to automate all the trivial things (90%) and focus on the toughest ones (10%) by either automating some of those or manually testing certain things that do not make sense to automate (trivial things, maybe, again?)
To conclude this blog and also this blog series, please keep in mind the following things:
- Test automation requires knowledge, skills and a new mindset – but it will surely pay off!
- Integrating the test automation into overall development lifecycle is a great way to start
- Time spent on a test automation creation will guarantee a great return on investment
- Creating and adopting test automation for your mobile app is not difficult – take a look at our mobile app testing platform for starters!
Do you have superb test automation individuals in your team?