What is Continuous Testing in Software Testing? [A Brief Explanation]

What is Continuous Testing?

Continuous testing is a testing approach to integrate automated testing processes within the software development life cycle to identify and resolve bugs or fixes at an early stage. Performing continuous testing helps to improve software quality and accelerate the development process.

It’s evident this approach is often associated with Agile methodologies, DevOps, and Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) pipelines. This is because continuous testing aims to confirm that the software aligns with the required quality standards in the entire journey of the software development life cycle.

Continuous testing is considered one of the best software testing strategies as it helps to find potential issues early in the development process. So, developers can resolve the issues and deploy the best quality software.

However, if you are planning to conduct software testing, here is our dedicated blog post on software testing strategies. You must check this blog to plan your software testing adequately and not leave any chances of errors and miscommunication.

Once you get clear on the basic idea of continuous testing, you might want to learn about the benefits of performing continuous testing. Check the next section.

Through continuous testing methods, testers find the issue and developers learn about potential issues early in the development process. So, they resolve the issues and this results in the overall improvement of the software’ quality.

You might now wonder what could be the benefits of performing continuous testing. Check the next section.

5 Core Advantages of Continuous Testing

Here are the 5 key benefits of continuous testing.

  1. Get Rapid Feedback for Continuous Improvement

    After running the automated test cases, developers can detect issues and bugs early in the development process. This results in reducing the risk of costly post-release fixes or downtime.

    By integrating continuous testing, testers find the bugs so developers can get a rapid feedback loop. This way, developers can address the issues or bugs quickly and constantly improve the overall quality of the software application.

  2. Improved Collaboration Within the Development Team

    When integrating automated tests into the software development process, testers and software developers need to work together for building a quality product.

    By applying a continuous testing approach, you improve collaboration and communication with the overall development team. This increases the development time and reduces the chances of human errors and in the end quality software is developed.

  3. Faster Time-to-market with High-quality Software

    As a tester, you need to ensure that the software meets quality standards and is ready for release on schedule. So, the best way to do that is to integrate automated testing which helps to streamline the development process.

    This is because continuous testing enables faster time-to-market by allowing developers and testers teams to release new features and updates more quickly, without sacrificing quality.

  4. Reduced Risk and Cost of the Software Development

    Being a software tester, if you want to find the bugs effectively and lower the chances of a software product failure, continuous testing helps. Conduction throughout the testing of the software product in the entire journey of development allows you to resolve the issues at an early stage.

    Therefore, continuous testing is one of the finest ways to lower the risk of finding bugs in the find product. This proactive approach reduces the likelihood of costly post-release fixes or downtime, ultimately resulting in cost savings for the organization.

  5. Improved Maintainability and Flexibility

    Continuous testing supports test-driven development, which involves writing tests before the code. While testing first helps you to identify the issues early, so you can ask developers to resolve the issues.

    Continuous testing results in the overall improvement of the code quality so the software becomes easy to maintain and update in the future. The continuous testing approach leads to more flexible and adaptable software that can quickly respond to changing user needs and market trends.

    If you are looking to understand test-driven development in detail, read this blog post on the test-driven development approach. As you get a clear idea of test-driven development, it becomes easy to understand how to create scalable and bug-free software solutions.

Further, if you want to execute continuous testing, check the next action of important considerations.

What Things to Consider Before Implementing Continuous Testing?

  1. Comprehensive Test Coverage

    To ensure comprehensive test coverage, you need to identify and prioritize critical business risks, processes, and use cases. You have to develop appropriate unit tests to provide comprehensive test coverage.

    By designing the appropriate unit tests, you have a considerable balancing of functional and non-functional test cases to ensure all aspects of the software are adequately tested.

  2. Test Data Management

    To get accurate and reliable test results, you need to have effective test data. This is because having a proper set of test data helps you to perform testing of the software similar to real-world scenarios.

    Effective data management includes creating representative test data sets, managing data privacy and security, and ensuring data consistency across different environments. In addition, good test data management practices help you to identify and address potential issues early in the software development life cycle (SDLC).

  3. Testing Tool Selection

    For conducting effective continuous testing, you need to have a combination of the right testing tools. So, select testing tools and frameworks that best fit your specific needs and requirements. For choosing the right continuous integration tools, you should consider factors such as ease of use, integration with existing tools and systems, and vendor support when selecting testing tools.

  4. Test Automation Strategy

    Before you conduct continuous testing, you need to have an automation test strategy. To develop a test automation strategy, you have to include guidelines for selecting tests to automate, defining test automation frameworks, and developing test scripts. In addition, you can incorporate manual testing and exploratory testing into your strategy to ensure all aspects of the software are tested effectively.

  5. Integration With Development Workflow

    Incorporating continuous testing in DevOps or any other development workflow so you can ensure testing is performed effectively. While integrating, you need to figure out how testing fits into your DevOps or agile software development process to get effective results.

    Moreover, you also need to know how to incorporate testing into code reviews and pull requests, and processes to manage testing in different environments and configurations.

  6. Testing Environment Management

    Maintain testing environments that closely mirror production environments to ensure accurate and reliable testing results. This includes managing the configuration of test environments, maintaining consistency across different stages of the development process, and managing test data across different environments.

  7. Continuous Improvement

    Continuous testing requires ongoing monitoring and evaluation to ensure it is effective and efficient. However, for that, you need to continuously measure testing effectiveness, identify bugs, and make changes to your test strategies and processes. For that, you need to create a culture of continuous improvement involving all members of the development team.

In conclusion, continuous testing is a process to incorporate into software development for finding issues and bugs at an early stage. Performing continuous testing helps you to improve the overall quality of the software throughout the software development process.

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Rakesh Patel

Written by

Rakesh Patel is the Founder and CEO of Space-O Technologies (Canada). He has 28 years of IT experience in business strategies, operations & information technology. He has expertise in various aspects of business like project planning, sales, and marketing, and has successfully defined flawless business models for the clients. A techie by mind and a writer at heart, he has authored two books – Enterprise Mobility: Strategy & Solutions and A Guide To Open311

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