Augmenting a DevOps Pipeline With Quality Engineering
Learn how the shift from Quality Assurance to Quality Engineering will enable DevOps and CI/CD by improving the workflow and the finished product.
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In today’s hyper-competitive market, IT companies have the compulsion to innovate quickly and be first to market. The quality of the end result holds more significance and helps to grow the business. Quality Assurance (QA) mostly requires extensive work and makes it strenuous for the testers as they have to wait for the development phase to get over to actually test the product. The shift to Quality Engineering (QE) is needed as it helps in delivering quality products to the customers after being thoroughly tested, analyzed, and improved using shift-left testing. Shift-left testing refers to the integration of testing activities along with the development of the product rather than later, as in traditional software development environments like waterfall. QE does not stop with preventing defects by its efficient testing approach but also detects the minor errors in the application.
A Deep Dive Into DevOps
DevOps, a cultural approach to unify software development and software operations, was considered the only solution to cope up with the diverse environments such as advanced technologies, multiple databases, and various end-user devices. In spite of being a successful approach, it lacked the agility needed to run the deployment process, though the development phase embraces agile methodology. This eventually resulted in slowing down of delivery and delayed testing to the end of the process which made the developers take up the ownership of the defects and fix it near the end of the deployment.
QE as an Aid
In order to bridge the rift between development and deployment and solve the issues raised due to the lack of agility, QE is very much essential. "Test early, test often" is what it makes QE a successful strategy to overcome the challenges IT firms face when it comes to testing the developed product. QE is an automated testing methodology that ensures the quality of the product throughout the stages of the development until delivery. QE can be leveraged by identifying and implementing the right development using practices such as Test-Driven Development (TDD), Acceptance Test Driven Development (ATDD), and Behavior-Driven Development (BDD).
Enabling Continuous Testing in DevOps Using QE
As DevOps initiatives have entered the corporate agenda, Continuous Integration (CI), Continuous Testing and Continuous Delivery (CD) have emerged as a stimulant for enabling quality at speed. The three main dimensions of quality engineering that allow the testers to scrutinize even the minute sections of an application or a product are the following:
- Functional Testing – This focuses more on testing the interface to ensure all the user requirements work properly in an application and should be carried out throughout the development cycle and production
- Non-Functional Testing –This focuses more on the readiness, sustainability, security, and quality of the application which requires more creativity and technical expertise to deliver an overall quality experience
- Technology/Process – These are the different methodologies and the best breed tools such as Cloud, AFTA, CI/CD, and DevOps which not only automates the process but enhances the quality of the end product and business as well.
Why Cloud Is the Future
What makes QE even better is the ability to perform continuous testing in a cloud environment which is preferred by many for its affordability, security, availability, and storage capacity. The cloud has made it easy to offload testing from local environments and make it scale. On the other hand, parallel testing allows programmers to test software much faster than what they could earlier. The fusion of cloud and continuous testing can be highly distinguished as the testers are given ample advantage to test whenever they want with an assurance of very minimal error occurrence in the application.
The privilege of being able to manage through software technology leverages cloud platform to interact with the changing dynamics in development and operations. Unlike the complicated and expensive legacy systems, cloud platforms are comparatively economical and allow meeting fluctuating customer requirements by testing in a cloud environment. Continuous testing leverages seamless integration into the software delivery pipeline and DevOps toolchain. Precisely, it is more cost-effective, an alternate for the complicated on-premises systems, and provides flexible and scalable business metrics.
The availability of test automation frameworks that consist of tools and platforms to perform all kinds of testing makes end-to-end testing achievable at a much faster rate. Such automation frameworks along with the best continuous tools boost the process to provide continuous delivery, reduce the testing efforts, and improve ROI. Some of the remarkable achievements made by implementing continuous testing in a DevOps pipeline for a period of six months are the following:
- Enhanced test coverage
- Reduced testing feedback cycle time to 40%
- Slashed CoQ to 30%
- Improved resource utilization and productivity
- Access to more than 1,000 devices/platforms in the cloud
Quality engineering affects all facets of a holistic customer experience and will be the key brand differentiator in the near future. To learn more about how quality engineering, in terms of continuous testing can come to rescue to organizations that face challenges in a DevOps environment, watch this webinar on “Embedding Quality Engineering in DevOps Pipeline.”
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