Testing Strategy

In today’s fast-paced environment, most businesses want to shorten the time it takes to bring a product to market; in-house teams and testing organizations are more challenging than ever. Consequently, testing experts must develop a good strategy for continuous testing to keep up with evolving needs and timely product functionality upgrades. 

Regression testing enables agile teams to focus on new features while maintaining stability at all product increment and upgrade stages. Agile teams utilize regression testing to ensure that tested software functions properly after every change.

Why do you need regression testing in Agile?

It is difficult for developers to remember all the subtle ways new code may interact with old code while creating new features. Avoiding potential UI problems slows down developers, making it difficult for agile teams to fulfill their sprint targets. In many situations, it is hard to avoid making inevitable mistakes.

With a dependable regression test suite, however, a developer can evaluate the compatibility of a new feature with all current functionality before merging the branch back into the master. If the tests uncover additional issues, these may be fixed before joining the department. In this approach, regression testing creates a safety net that allows Agile teams to concentrate on implementing new features.

When should you test for regression in Agile?

Ideally, running your whole suite of regression tests would be best each time you merge a branch back into the main. If this is not practicable, you should adhere to specific general guidelines. Consistently execute your regression suite under the following situations:

  • When incorporating new features into a product (e.g., adding time-tracking to an invoicing app).
  • After addressing issues in an existing feature, it is necessary to ensure that the bug solutions did not result in any new regressions.
  • After implementing a significant software update (e.g., switching to the latest version of Ruby on Rails).
  • Before releasing code to production.

Why do you need to switch to automated regression testing?

Automating regression testing makes it possible to get different results that improve team agility and product quality.

1. Save resources

Automated regression testing frees up resources.

You may automate the testing of specific software components with a high degree of precision and then devote your mental resources to other software testing and bug solutions, as well as human investigation of situations that demand special attention. This may improve the quality of your program and provide your consumers with a substantially less buggy experience.

Selecting a test automation solution that does not need coding may save significant time on creating and maintaining automated processes. QA teams are freed from their dependence on developers, allowing them to bypass bottlenecks.

2. Immediate response

Regression testing is often conducted as the last stage before release for teams using a waterfall methodology rather than an agile one. However, with the advent of automation, it becomes feasible to test iteratively, thus providing immediate feedback loops and lowering the total testing time while simultaneously enhancing quality.

Using an automation tool that generates visual recordings and logs, it is simple to determine why tests fail, accelerating feedback loops and resolving errors.

3. Continuous testing

Regression tests may run around the clock, seven days a week. With scheduling, you may run your tests at particular intervals, such as daily or weekly, to prevent issues from being overlooked. In addition, testers may focus on activities that provide more excellent value while regression tests run in the background.

Continuous regression testing guarantees that testers are alerted of defects before products reach end-users. And as stated before, with the visual recordings and logs, detecting and resolving issues is quick and effective.

4. Enables scalability

With the capacity to test quicker, more tests can be conducted. When tester resources are maxed out with manual, repetitive chores, they lack time to experiment more and run the danger of missing items or skipping exploratory testing and test design, which may negatively affect the quality of the tests.

By automating regression testing, it is possible to run tests constantly at a rate and frequency that would be impossible with human testing. This allows testing and quality assurance to growing without incurring extra costs.

5. Reduces upkeep

As new features are introduced to a product, additional tests must be implemented, which causes the regression suite to increase over time. At some point, manual management of regression test cases will no longer be practicable.

How to build an effective regression testing strategy for an agile team?

Only an effective regression testing strategy can bring results. 

1. Identifying the automatable platforms

The first is to identify the platforms for which you wish to automate regression testing. You may prioritize it depending on the most popular media among users. ​ 

2. Choose a right tool​ ​

After defining the platforms for automation, the following step is to choose an appropriate regression testing automation tool. Consider the following criteria while picking automation tools:

  • Budget
  • Open-source software
  • Training requirement
  • Simple administration of scripts
  • facets backed by instruments
  • Robustness of the tool’s employed framework
  • Aid from the instrument community

3. Identifying which regression tests can’t be automated meaning that complete test automation is not achievable for various reasons, including those listed below.

  • Integrations with other parties in the software
  • Tests concerning image capture
  • Tests containing a secret code must be introduced to advance.

Therefore, it is essential to establish which situations may and cannot be automated.

4. Prioritizing the test

Automating the tests with the most significant importance is usually recommended first. The project’s essential functionality/features should be automated first at all times. It is necessary to determine the significance and severity of each test to choose which test should be automated.

5. determining when to start automation ​

It would be best if you only automated when the module/feature under consideration is generally stable and its basic logic is not anticipated to change significantly in the foreseeable future. If you often alter the feature, the automated regression testing will inevitably fail.

6. Preparing the framework/code repository/required environments for test automation

One of the primary first phases in the test automation process is to define and configure the foundational test automation framework so that the code generated by many individuals is consistent and organized.

It will also aid in establishing reporting capabilities and guarantee a seamless operation in the future. In the beginning days of the test automation, you should also identify the source repository and a separate test environment on which the tests may run routinely.

7. Writing the automated test script

Now is the time for the Automation Testers to build test scripts and regularly integrate their code into the repository.

8. Continuous testing via the execution of automated tests

Once the tests are complete and functional, the next step is to execute the automated test using a CI technology such as Jenkins. This would guarantee that the automated regression testing runs periodically and that the relevant parties are alerted.

This automated testing minimizes the time and effort required for human testers to repeat the same tests and exchange the results. Therefore, automating these procedures is crucial. You may schedule the automated tests to run depending on your needs, such as daily, weekly, or whenever developers submit new code to the application.

9. Continue to upgrade the Automated Regression program with new software versions.

When new software updates are released, it is essential to continually update your regression test suite and add new or updated current automated test scripts. This will verify that your automated tests are present and trustworthy before delivering the product to end consumers.

Challenges of regression testing in agile and how to overcome them?

The concept of regression testing on a software product is straightforward to explain and comprehend. Changing software product characteristics is one of the causes.

As the functionality and capacity of the product increase, so does its complexity. Lastly, the quality assurance team may encounter time limits and management pressure while doing regression testing on an application.

The most common obstacles encountered during regression testing are mentioned below:

Understanding of Existing Application

As the workload increases, the team may add more testers. The new team members explain the newly allocated modules, subsystems, and components. This comprehension may be sufficient for extensive functional testing but is inadequate for regression testing. With insufficient information, it is impossible to do exhaustive regression testing.

In such situations, consistent test management and requirement management strategy must be implemented so that new testers can do regression testing effectively.

Costly for Business

Communicating the benefits of regression testing to business executives is another obstacle. The organization’s business divisions likely see regression testing as an expense that provides no value to the enterprise. They may see testing something that has already been built, tested, and deployed at an early stage as a waste of time and money. Therefore, management may hesitate to provide finances, time, and resources for software regression testing. Therefore, control may be irritatingly critical and want explanations for every regression testing cycle.

A quality assurance manager is responsible for effectively managing the need and benefits of regression testing. They must consider how to develop an effective and efficient regression testing approach.

Reduced Regression Testing Time

When software testers are assigned regression testing, they are tempted to test the program thoroughly. In contrast, the quality assurance team does not have much time to do regression testing. Therefore, the quality assurance manager should guarantee that the testing team does not devote all of its resources to a few modules, leaving other modules untested due to a lack of resources.

This implies that the quality assurance manager must devise an efficient strategy for regression testing to guarantee that all required test cases are performed within the specified time frame.

Easy to lose one’s way

As new features and upgrades are included in the software product, more test cases are introduced to the regression test suite. As the product’s functionality evolves, testers get overburdened with regression test cases, lose track of test cases, and thus overlook essential test cases.

This may be prevented by continuously evaluating the regression test suite and removing any no longer relevant test cases. It is also essential to avoid repeating test cases since this would create unnecessary work and frustration for the testers.

Cases Selected for Regression Testing

Test case selection for the regression test suite is an additional challenge of this procedure. You should ensure that the regression examines all integration and modification points. In addition, you cannot overwhelm your regression test suite with test cases since you have less time for regression testing. Consequently, you must carefully choose test cases, frequently monitor the test suite, and execute periodic cleaning to remove obsolete or unnecessary test cases from the regression test suite.

Carefully observe the most current requirements and test cases. Any negligence might result in the retention of invalid test cases and the removal of legitimate test cases. Ensure all required test cases for the new conditions have been created and included in the regression test suite.

Conclusion

Regression tests are vital in any development framework since they guarantee that incremental development does not damage an application. To produce error-free, high-quality user experiences in competitive timeframes, use a tool like Headspin that automates regression testing and makes things easy for the Agile team.