How to choose right test tool?

QA professionals across industries struggle to pick the right test tool for automation.

What do they end up doing?

Go with the most advertised, marketed and (uhmm!) hyped testing tool. While this strategy holds good in few cases, it is not the optimal choice.

Thinking what the fuss is all about? Why is selecting the perfect test tool is so important?

Simple. They increase software quality and productivity.

How?

For example, the total number of man hours for manual testing needed for a project is 75 hours. After analyzing current testing needs, the right test tool is put into place to automate test cases. After few testing iterations, the test effort comes down to 25 man hours.

This example shows that having the right test tool brings down testing efforts drastically.

example-test-automation-tool

How does one make an informed decision?

We will sound crazy but go to your drawing board and chalk out the requirements:

process-of-selecting-testing-tool

A. Jot down your requirements: The “Why’s” you need to answer

First off, identify the desired output from the tool. Ask yourself

  • Do you need a testing tool which generates and runs test cases automatically?
  • Does your tool provide means to execute sub-set of test cases depending on test data?
  • Is Integration with other tools such as CI or test management system required?
  • What is your preferred format for Test Report? Do you need pie chart or graph in your test report?
  • Any other specific requirements you have?

 Once you have answered the questions above, you will be surprisingly clear on what you need.

And, knowing what you need is half the battle done.

 B. Check Testing Tools

After identifying the requirements, the next logical step is to check available testing tools.

  • Identify which tool (open-source, commercial or custom tool) best matches your criteria and make a list.
  • Detail analysis of features such as Integration support, cross platform and underlying technology stack and other such similar requirements.
  • Decide to test it using a pilot project or opt for a trial period on the selected testing tool.

C. Carry out Cost Benefit Analysis

  • Calculate the cost of buying and deploying (including the training costs etc) the test tool.
  • Estimate the man hours the tool will reduce.
  • Estimate increased productivity in test case execution

D. The Final Destination: Decision and Results

 At this stage, you will be well aware of the tool and its implications. You can make an informed decision.

The next time you want to select a tool, follow this approach and you will see the difference.  tweet-this

Less confusion, more productivity.

How do you choose a test tool? Comment below and let us know.

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