Lessons Learned in Implementing Automated Testing

Article

Burns, Jean L.; Shattuck, Thomas J.   (1997, American Society for Quality)   Universal Instruments Corporation, Binghamton, NY

International Conference on Software Quality, October 6-8 1997, Montgomery, AL    Vol. 7    No. 0
QICID: 11265    October 1997    pp. 266-272
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Article Abstract

The transition from ad hoc testing to automated testing at Universal Instruments Corporation was preceded by activities such as writing and implementing of test plans, studying the results, defining metrics, and developing a suite of tests. Then, criteria were defined for the testing tool. The criteria covered factors such as cost, documentation, technical support, and training. Evaluation of candidate tools began with searches of the Internet, bulletin boards, and the literature. Three tools were chosen for evaluation. The final choice was made only after a permanent employee was hired to implement the tool. Application of the selected tool required development of exception and error routines. The scripts used for tool customization had to be flexible enough to work with non-standard objects in the applications being tested. Much time was invested in programming the tool at first, but it was time well spent. Therefore, tool customization and flexibility should be major factors to be considered in selection of a testing tool. Benefits of the tool selected by Universal Instruments included the discovery of defects relatively early in the development process and the ability to implement comprehensive GUI testing. Lessons learned included the importance of well defined criteria; adequate training; and both technical and interpersonal skills in the person responsible for tool implementation.

Keywords

Case study,Documentation,Testing,Product development,Software quality,Process improvement


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