Software Development Organizations Overlook the Value of Automated Testing : Seapine Software Quality-Ready Survey Results Show That Many Organizations Lack Automation

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According to results from the Seapine Software Quality-Ready Assessment (QRA), few organizations have embraced automated testing.

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In many ways, automated testing tools are specialized software development tools that require testers with programming knowledge to get the most out of the tools' capabilities

Forty-four of percent of organizations surveyed have either not investigated automated testing or do not see enough of an ROI to implement it. The QRA results show that automated testing has not gained wide acceptance among software development and QA organizations.

"In many ways, automated testing tools are specialized software development tools that require testers with programming knowledge to get the most out of the tools' capabilities," says Richard Riccetti, president and CEO, Seapine. "So one barrier is having testers who can write and debug test scripts. Another barrier is having a formalized test plan and test cases to automate, which is best to do while you are designing the application. If you don't you'll fall quickly behind. These factors may affect the adoption rate."

Development organizations must continue to test existing functionality as they add new features. As a result, regression suites grow with each release. When all the tests are performed manually, test time increases as well. To avoid missing deadlines, organizations have to decide between adding testers, lengthening release cycles, or increasing risk by reducing test coverage.

Sixty percent of the organizations surveyed have to redeploy some resources to regression test critical bug fixes and to ensure that fixes do not compromise the existing code. With automated testing, regression tests are part of the build process and run without manual intervention.

Riccetti suggests the following to streamline regression testing:

Ensure you have a process in place for unit testing so QA is not the first to test the code. Document repetitive tests and investigate implementing an automated testing solution to perform them. Determine which areas you need to test more thoroughly. Ask yourself which activities are preventing you from getting to that testing. If those activities do not require human interaction, consider your automated testing options. Riccetti concludes with the following advice, "While automated testing requires a fairly significant upfront investment in script creation, the resulting increased productivity of the testing organization rapidly exceeds the investment. Management needs to take the leap of faith. The ROI can be substantial."

About Seapine Software

With over 8,500 customers worldwide, Seapine Software, Inc. (http://www.seapine.com) is the leading provider of quality-centric application lifecycle management solutions. Headquartered in Mason, Ohio, with offices in Europe and Asia-Pacific, Seapine solutions help companies reliably and efficiently develop quality software applications. Seapine's products support best practices, integrate into all popular development environments, and run on Microsoft Windows®, Linux®, Sun Solaris®, and Apple Macintosh® platforms.

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Keith Vanden Eynden
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