There are a number of challenges to overcome when pursuing cloud testing. For many quality assurance teams, it's been a long journey getting used to cloud technology. However, as the cloud becomes more accepted across businesses, it has proven to be a significant asset, and many processes have already transitioned to the virtual environment. Testing, for example, has seen significant benefits from operating in the cloud. However, there are a number of challenges to overcome when pursuing cloud testing:
Service Availability, Assurance, and Efficiency
One common issue that organizations experience comes from the level of service cloud providers are able to support. After all, if you're transferring a major part of your operations, like QA test management, to the cloud, you want to make sure that it can be accessed as needed without experiencing undue delays. TechNet Magazine noted that this challenge inherently leads to two other service concerns: assurance and efficiency. The vendor must ensure timely delivery and have the infrastructure in place to provide scalable services and guaranteed uptime.
These challenges will largely depend on provider capabilities. By choosing a reliable vendor with a strong SLA, organizations can have better peace of mind that these challenges will be minimized and that testing efforts will be supported appropriately.
Data protection has been an ongoing debate for potential cloud users. If an organization uses a cloud-hosted app to handle sensitive information, it must be sure that it won't be compromised. A Cognizant white paper noted that in many cases, encryption techniques are considered insufficient for cloud testing efforts. However, procedures are constantly being developed to improve security and performance in the cloud.
Another challenge in this space is the fact that the vendor may not be familiar with industry standards. This could create significant issues for institutions in the healthcare and retail spaces. Choosing a vendor that works in these spaces will be essential to ensuring that organizations can securely test their applications while complying with regulations and keeping their data protected from potential breaches.
Testing Diverse Components
When testing in the cloud, there are a number of cases that must be evaluated, which can make it a challenge to identify problems. In a statement with TechTarget, Enterprise Management Associates, Inc., market research vice president Dennis Drogseth noted that QA will need to run tests on network, server, database and software performance as well as how it's cached in the client. This problem is compounded when considering different geographies. The challenge then, is taking in all of these diverse components and testing to determine where the problems exist.
Cloud Test management could be a significant asset to minimize this issue. With this tool, QA teams will be able to keep track of their testing efforts in real time, prioritize tasks and ensure that everyone is on the same page for each project. Although there are a number of challenges that exist in cloud testing environments, with the right tools, they can be overcome.