The eventual financial return - or lack thereof - makes or breaks whether you’ve made a sound business investment.
For instance, you could bring in $1,000,000 of revenue, which sounds fantastic at first. But if you spent $2,000,000 to get there, that amounts to a resounding failure.
With that said, there’s a delicate balancing act. Neglecting to spend where it counts will generate losses because you’re handcuffing yourself.
Take automated testing as an example: this expenditure is a must for any development project in today’s landscape.
Of course, investing in automation requires careful research. Developers must ensure their testing software or platforms are reliable and of high quality. However, upon finding the right fit, the value is undeniable and entirely positive.
This blog will take a look at five clear advantages that make automated testing worth your investment.
It Maximizes Your Effort
The notion of working smarter and not harder comes down to spending your time wisely. Yes, it has the fringe benefit of doing less work, so coders aren’t overburdened. But the idea is to maximize all minutes spent on work. Every stitch of effort should revolve around tasks that bring value.
Automated testing ensures that coders can focus their energy on what’s most critical to their organization and clients, such as:
- What’s needed to get set up
- What’s required for a release rollout
- Learning and improving branching approaches
Without automating the testing process, it turns into a distraction from the above functions. Whereas automation streamlines tasks, so that coders spend their time on more meaningful, value-driven work.
More specifically, your team’s time will be spent developing clean code driven by reliable, automatically run tests.
It Encourages Productive Risk-Taking and Innovation
Being afraid of taking bold chances is understandable. You don’t want to waste time and resources on something bound to fail from the start.
On the other hand, being too rigid means that there’s a ceiling for your success. You can only get so far by playing it safe and never making any changes.
With automated tests, boldness and changes are encouraged, as they prevent the potential damage done without testing.
Moreover, automated tests provide faster feedback, letting coders know when things go wrong right away, whether a test is run locally or on a build server. Meaning, developers won’t destroy their previous work. Nor will they waste time trying to integrate something that was doomed from the beginning.
When developers have this peace of mind, they’ll be more decisive about attempted changes. As such, they know that innovation is rewarded and encouraged. At worst, if the test shows that a change won’t work, it will amount to a blip in the radar.
For larger projects, automated tests are run in the 2 following categories:
- Assessing functions and components currently in development.
- Looking at features that are more stable and unlikely to change
With the more stable features, less-frequent regression testing allows for quicker feedback for high-risk changes.
It Boosts Productivity
Developers have tons of work to do throughout a given day when only focused on coding. Throw manual testing into the mix, and it only acts as a deterrent that breaks concentration.
Automated tests don’t halt developers’ momentum, allowing them to remain in the zone, tuned into doing what they do best: creating excellent code.
Also, the tests will be run as developers are working. The only thing that will break their flow will be if a test fails.
Sure, everybody needs breaks from doing the same thing all the time. And coders can always use a break from the difficult work they do. All the same, continually going back and forth between coding and testing is disruptive.
It Helps Developers Be More Predictive
Code isn’t predictable, and the value of tests will always come down to the skill of the coders and peer-reviewers.
Therefore, this section will clarify one caveat in this blog: automated testing isn’t an automatic savior. When applied correctly with skilled developers, it’s a massive win for any organization. But it’s not a magic bullet.
However, with high-level code and automated tests, outcomes become more predictable. Therefore, teams will always know where the application’s working code currently stands.
It Fine-Tunes More Reliable Processes
Typically, people - and especially coders - are problem solvers. They assess a situation, decide on a solution, and move forward.
People tend to falter when faced with mundane, repetitive tasks. Everybody is vulnerable to factors like mental health, burnout, problems at home, and physical illness. Then there’s the matter of menial work being boring and unengaging.
With the above factors in mind, it’s understandable how humans become unreliable with menial work.
Manual testing is about as repetitive and mundane as it gets.
So, performing standard testing processes - manually - leaves coders open to mistakes. That notion rings doubly true when acceptance tests aren’t properly assessed--which can happen.
It’s then possible to falsely assume that everything is ship-shape before receiving an angry client email about how they couldn’t retrieve their user profile. Only when you perform the acceptance tests again - and see them fail - would any issues be noticed.
In the above instance, you’ll probably notice there was a bug for days or even weeks. Needless to say, clients won’t be impressed, and your organization’s reputation will take a hit.
Automated testing provides much-needed reliability because these tools always maintain their focus, no matter how repetitive or mundane. As long as coders and their peer-reviewers are highly skilled, embarrassing mistakes that should’ve been flagged won’t fly under the radar.
Automated Testing is Worth It...If You Do it the Right Way
For all the reasons above, automated testing is a worthy investment. And in today’s day and age, where high-quality work is expected to be completed fast, there’s no other option.
However, it’s worth restating that investing in automated testing doesn’t guarantee success. It’s a significant piece of a much broader puzzle that involves skilled coders and choosing the correct software for your organization.
Another worthwhile investment is consulting with a software development company like Chacra Software before investing in a software endeavor. We believe in educating our clients about methods that give them the most value, such as automated testing. Contact us at https://www.chacrasoftware.com/contact-us for a free consultation.