Scriptless Test Automation: Transforming Software Testing

Scriptless Test Automation: Transforming Software Testing

24 March 2021

In recent years, there have been several changes in the world of technology. An equivalent has happened within the software testing world where Test Automation has evolved to facilitate rapid software releases at the very best quality.

Automation has always been interesting because it reduces tedious testing efforts and accelerates the testing process. Nowadays, almost every organization is automating test cases. However, the return of the investment is not always well anticipated. Often, the tools are blamed for the negative return of investment, yet the important reasons related to failed test automation are the long hours required to make the test automation suite, the need for specialized development resources, the problem of scripting and maintenance, the shortage of test data management strategy, and a scarcity of involvement of the topic matter experts.

Challenges Involved with Automation in Testing

Test automation is an important subset of software testing. By using automated testing, we will expedite the method of software validation and increase testing coverage. There are tons of challenges in applying test automation for applications under test.

Testers might face countless nightmares without overcoming these challenges, which will cause software automated testing failure. Traditional test automation techniques sometimes end up to be ineffective in meeting the business demands of rapid application delivery and quicker time-to-market, leading to a replacement set of challenges.

Lack of quicker feedback:

In traditional QA methods, the scripts are developed only after the appliance is made and stabilized. Early feedback, which is important for the reduction of the value of quality in Agile development, is thus rarely available.

High Upfront Investment Cost:

As a matter of fact, the initial phase of test automation is typically expensive. It’s necessary to research, design, and build a test automation framework, libraries, or reusable functions, etc. In some cases, it’s required to require under consideration licensing costs, facilitating and operating costs like hardware and software costs. Furthermore, we also take hidden costs into consideration and even large investments are needed for test infrastructure and hiring and training of skilled resources. As a result, how we will make sure that this stuff cannot affect our decisions.

Maintenance issues:

Automation components need to transform regularly and consistently in response to changes in the application under test, as the development teams are increasingly reliant on process automation. The future expenses arising in maintaining these scripts take away the advantages that automation can bring.

Change of focus:

The primary objective of the testing team has moved to the technical development and execution of scripts instead of testing the functionality of the application.

Scriptless Test Automation

Scriptless test automation is one of the best solutions to maximize the scalability of test automation. Scriptless test automation helps the testers and business users to automate the test cases without worrying about the coding experience. It helps them to achieve faster and reduces the time to understand the code.

The Scriptless test automation will speed up the complete software development process. This allows the testers and business users to participate in test automation and increase the scope of code reusability. This will ease the development teams to overcome the biggest challenge of spending more time at the script development.

Scripting automated UI tests with Selenium can be extremely forbidding and turns into a massive headache later on. Dealing with the countless issues between Webdriver (Selenium’s framework) and the web browsers where tests execute has sent many of us into loops of trial and error when things go wrong. When an element on a page is moved or altered or when a new feature is added which makes many of my tests broken, we then have to determine which scripts are affected and manually update them.

What is a ‘Scriptless Test Automation’ tool and how does it work?

A Scriptless Test Automation tool provides a detachment from the test automation code such that the creation of a test is more focused on business logic validation. The human effort required to create a test is drastically simplified such that instead of writing code, you would simply indicate which steps need to be performed. This tool then internally translates those steps into the actual execution code behind the scenes during test execution. As the end result: an ultra-accessible interface to define your tests without having to write any code.

Let’s check out the specific capabilities and the way scriptless automation tools provide a simplistic but effective approach to each of them.

Test Steps:

When using a Scriptless tool to define tests, you would identify what needs to happen instead of how it needs to happen. You might choose a “Click” action and identify which thing you want to click. You might need to fill out a form on a page for your test, so you would simply say which values to type for each of the form fields.

You don’t need to worry about the following:

  • waiting for the elements to be visible on the page
  • define the XPath for finding the elements
  • entering/leaving focus of input fields
  • writing a single line of code

The screenshot below displays a part of a test in a scriptless tool where each test step clearly describes what will happen.

Scriptless Test Automation: Transforming Software Testing

Object Repository:

The Scriptless Test Automation tool provides a mechanism to store reusable Objects (or elements on a web page) that you need to interact with within your tests. For example, the ‘Login Button’ on a user login page. With traditional Selenium testing frameworks, you should have knowledge of the HTML locator (CSS Class, ID, Xpath, etc) of any element your tests need to interact with.

With Scriptless solutions, you’d simply reference the ‘human-readable’ named Objects in your shared Object Repository for every step in your test. As a test creator, you would not need to know how to locate that button on the particular page, you would just indicate that you need to click the ‘Login Button’.

Test Recorder:

Some of the Scriptless tools provide a “Record” capability that allows you to capture sequences of actions you’re performing in your local browser while interacting with a web page. Then it translates that series of recorded actions into a repeatable test. this enables you to make stored, repeatable tests by simply stepping through them in your browser.

Test Execution:

Once test cases are defined, the subsequent thing we would like is to run them. A strong Scriptless tool should provide an execution engine directly embedded within the platform such that execution is just the click of a button. Multi-browser support is extremely important here, we’d like to validate a uniform user experience across the varied web browsers our users might use.

Execution Reporting:

Test cases are defined and executed in one central place. Now we have unified execution reports that are consistent across tests for all of the applications we test. A comprehensive Scriptless tool will have highly consumable test reporting that has all relevant metrics/data (assertions, broken steps, execution timing/duration, failures, logs, test data used, etc.). The consistency in reporting streamlines communication channels between Development, QA, and therefore the Business.

Integrations:

Automating our application builds, functional testing, and deployments (CI/CD) is an integral part of achieving optimal efficiency and improving quality, so it’s absolutely imperative that any Scriptless platform provides an agnostic interface for integrating with the limitless sort of tooling one may need – from defect management systems to CI tools (e.g. Jenkins) to release/project tracking software. This interface is most frequently a versatile API which provides a mechanism to invoke the available operations (e.g. running a test, getting test results) programmatically.

Benefits of Scriptless Test Automation

  1. A catalyst between business analysts and technical experts: The scriptless nature of the tests is a facilitator for communication between business analysts and technical experts. It becomes easier for business analysts and functional experts to communicate and review test cases.
  2. Reduces time to automate efficiently: The quicker you automate, the sooner you get the desired results. The testing team can automate large test suites rapidly using scriptless automation. The speed of delivery improves rapidly. It also reduces the time spent on automation. This ensures the detection of bugs during the early stages of the software development lifecycle.
  3. Eradicates technical obligation: Integrating smarter framework design upfront can eliminate the future costs that arise from augmented script maintenance effort.
  4. Quicker script design and development:  The quicker development of tests that happens is because of the simple and no-complex test design and development process.

Best Tools for Scriptless Test Automation

  1. Test Craft – TestCraft is a scriptless Selenium test automation platform and allows monitoring the web applications. It is a revolutionary artificial intelligence (AI) that can automatically overcome any changes in the app and helps the teams to eliminate cost and maintenance time.
  2. Ranorex Studio – Ranorex Studio includes a complete set of scriptless test automation tools for performing end-to-end testing on mobiles, desktops, and the website. This tool automates tests in half the time of other approaches.
  3. ACCELQ – The only cloud-based continuous testing platform is ACCELQ. It automates web testing and API without any need of writing a single line code. For IT teams of any size, ACCELQ is the best choice as it can automate many critical aspects like test design, planning, test generation, and execution.
  4. Zaptest – ZapTest optimizes your test automation through less scripting, auto-documentation, and parallel execution. It supports VB Script and JavaScript. It can test any UI and API interface. It is best for Small to Large Businesses or Start-Ups.
  5. Selenium IDE – Selenium IDE is a free and open-source tool for Test Automation. It works through record and playback. It supports cross-browser execution using Command-line Runner for Selenium IDE and used as a plugin for Chrome or Firefox browsers. Test cases you create in Selenium IDE are reusable.

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