DevOps is a process – a mind-set – that requires a cultural shift in the way most organizations work today. It has a straight advantage over the traditional software development and deployment approaches. It reduces the time spent on interleaved phases so that software delivery is close to immediate and glitch free. In such a highly integrated approach where development, testing, quality assurance, and delivery need to work in tandem, automation and system intelligence would come in to play a crucial role. Info graphic Here’s how.
2016 is the year of digital. Every business, irrespective of the industry, is adapting digital as a core part of its functional strategy and slowly yet steadily moving towards digital transformation.
Digital Transformation – The What, Why and How
Digital transformation is the most important strategic challenge facing business leaders. ‘Born Digital’ companies are dominating business models today, offering new value to consumers and service providers alike. As a result, customer experience, social media influence, big data have gained a whole new meaning – one that has forced the companies to look at technology in a new light and integrate it with 360-degree processes. Going digital is the way for organizations if they wish to make an impact on their target audience and amplify their reach. But there is much more involved in a digital business transformation than just the end product. As Mark Sonority, columnist at Marketing Week, puts it, ‘it’s impossible to find an Archimedes point where digital ends and so called ‘traditional’ channels begin’.
Securing the Stakes Through Digital Transformation Testing
Digital transformation promises greater yields for businesses and thus the stakes involved are also high. With so much at stake, aspects like quality assurance and testing become integral to any business’digital transformation strategy. For this the organizations need to identify the tools and methodologies that are best suited to their requirements. However, the biggest challenge organizations face is to get the best from technology while ensuring customer satisfaction. Saul Berman, IBM believes that “We’ve moved from digital products and infrastructure to digital distribution and Web strategy to now into more holistic transformations that clearly are based on mobile, social media, digitization and the power of analytics and we think it’s really a new era requiring new strategies.” At the 2014 Accenture Technology Vision, it was declared that ‘Big was the Next Big Thing’. Besides, one of their recent studies revealed that 62% companies are investing in digital technologies while 35 % are comprehensively investing in digital as part of their business strategy. Home Depot, for example is creating a connected home ecosystem where all the products it sells will be compatible with Wink connected home system, thereby developing potential new services and unique experiences for Wink customers.
We’ve moved from digital products and infrastructure to digital distribution and Web strategy to now into more holistic transformations that clearly are based on mobile, social media, digitization and the power of analytics, we think it’s really a new era requiring new strategies.
We’ve moved from digital products and infrastructure to digital distribution and Web strategy to now into more holistic transformations that clearly are based on mobile, social media, digitization and the power of analytics and we think it’s really a new era requiring new strategies.”
With digital transformation testing, the goal of the companies is to ensure consistency in user experience irrespective of the medium of communication. Digitization experience across all platforms like phones, tablets, notebooks, wearables etc. needs to provide a seamless customer experience. This can be made possible by performing repeated tests to ensure that all browsers and operating systems work as per expectations. As many as 79% companies acknowledge the role of customer experience and mark it as an important consideration while testing.This aim of providing a seamless customer experience is a big step forward for most organizations and requires thorough testing and quality checks at various levels. Govind Muthukrishnan, Senior Vice President and Testing Global Service Line Leader, remarks that this year’s World Quality Report shows that we live in a fast moving world where customer experience and flexibility are as important as keeping pace with digital transformation using Agile QA and DevOps.
Security – The Driving Force of Digital Transformation
When an organization introduces digital transformation in its processes, quality assurance too becomes important. And in times companies are switching over to the digital mode in a bid to stay ahead of competition, automation testing is helping them deliver increased efficiency. According to Raffi Margaliot, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Application Delivery Management, HP Software,
“Technology disruptions such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data and mobility are leading to faster business transformations than ever before. Companies have to pivot quickly in order to stay ahead of the curve, compete and conform to the new style of business”.
Organizations have increased their budget allocation for QA and digital testing and it will only go up in the coming years to ensure a perfect environment for their customers. Companies have realized that to stay ahead in competition, they have to invest more in their IT budget. A report in 2015 found that 43% executives foresee an increase in IT spending budgets and a 9% year on year increase in the budget directed towards testing and quality assurance. According to the experts, testing is critical when going digital.
One of the biggest challenges in digital transformation is the security. Companies have to continuously invest in testing systems which ensure the integrity of their processes and applications. Digital security cannot be taken lightly by any organization that hopes to rise in business and wants to offer a smooth experience to its customers. Another reason why experts are in favor of testing is because these days the product life cycle is very short and there is a demand for greater agility. Organizations are modernizing their testing processes to meet these shorter life cycle programs.
Digital Transformation has affected the way traditional business is done. There are a whole new set of processes that have to be incorporated in the system to deliver productive customer experiences and consequent business benefits. In the view of tough competition, the need of the hour is for flexible and rapid delivery of software and systems. This is made possible only through the modes of testing, which themselves have evolved to a whole new process. Test automation is not enough by itself. What is needed is its integration with development processes so that testing becomes an integral part of overall business strategy.
Aaaron Levie, CEO of Box says, ‘the Last ten years of IT have been about changing the way people work. The next ten years of IT will be about transforming your business’. In the process of digital transformation, testing is very important so as to have the organization ready for the future. One thing is for sure – as digital transformation starts permeating the internal processes in an organization and automation becomes the norm, testing will acquire a larger role and it will grow to proportions that can not even be imagined at the moment.
Quality Assurance & Testing is crucial and fulfills a critical role in any digital transformation journey. TechArcis understands that each industry has specific business requirements and a unique set of challenges that need focused testing solutions. Leveraging our domain expertise, leading-edge tools and methodologies, delivery model and industry best practices, we offer customized solutions for industry-specific software testing requirements to enhance targeted business performance. Our industry solutions help enterprises across various sectors keep pace with real-time requirements, address test specifications, and simulate them to the scalability of production. Contact us today!
Product engineering is a vast domain that deals with various aspects of designing and developing a system, software or device, starting from quality and cost to performance, projected lifespan, dependability, user features and and serviceability…
Product engineering is a vast domain that deals with various aspects of designing and developing a system, software or device, starting from quality and cost to performance, projected lifespan, dependability, user features and serviceability. Quite naturally, testing product engineering services too encompasses a wide field that’s different from testing your everyday software and systems.
Overview of testing in different areas and its role
The world is increasingly running on embedded systems and software, from your cell phone and big screen home theater to the air traffic control station. Since most embedded systems are “real-time”, testing time constraints for an embedded system is as important as testing functional behavior.This becomes more important as some systems (like air traffic control or medical equipment) are safety-critical where failure isn’t an option.
Embedded system testing is a difficult task due to cross-development environments, a wide range of execution platforms and deployment architectures, tight resources and timing constraints on platforms where tests are to be executed, together with emergence of newer certification and quality standards. Thus, embedded systems are categorized on the basis of hardware/software used or on their type (such as safety critical or technical scientific etc) to test them. Such systems can also be tested by classifying them based on platform used (like Host based Embedded System and Target based Embedded System). When testing real time systems, emphasis is given on time constraints, predictability and resources awareness together with execution efficiency.
Domain-specific tests in this domain include fun factor testing (evaluating whether a game is fun to play) that requires insight into game design along with what the target user group enjoys. Balance testing to assess balance between difficulty levels, monsters and events; AI testing for checking if computer controlled opponents work according to game design; and multiplayer/network testing (to check how multiple players are interacting with each other, computer controlled opponents and the game servers) are other tests run to evaluate games. Game testing requires a combinatorial experience to handle testing of various complex aspects and anyone thinking it’s just about playing a game to find problems grossly underestimates the whole scenario.
From NFC payment tags used by banks for retail bill payments and payments through wearable devices to healthcare apps and assessing consumer behavior by studying NFC/ATM card usages etc, the scope of IoT testing is varied. Since the sub-components, subsystems and services are interrelated and possessed by multiple providers and third party units, IoT testing needs to access them all for effective testing of the complete system. IoT test cases could be varied – from checking if all the devices can register to a network and transmit massive user data (when required) to verifying data transmission in encrypted form/low power mode, testing what happens when data volume defined in the requirement is exceeded and more. IoT testing involves checking compatibility and connectivity issues to power problems, safety concerns and privacy/security issues, among others.
Key things to consider for testing these
Test data and test cases: Gathering the right test data and formulating targeted test cases is crucial. For embedded system testing, classifying the systems is crucial while for game testing, the objective (say, whether you want to do audio tests or realism tests) determines how the test cases would be developed. For IoT testing where multiple devices and elements are involved and where some devices may not be available for testing or are of inadequate capacity, proper test data is crucial for formulating test cases.
Automation:For embedded systems in action, automated regression tests can be performed. The interface you choose or configure is very crucial for automated embedded testing as it will define what testing you can perform. Though complete automation of game testing may not be possible, you can use automation for unit testing (w.r.t code), protocol/message level testing (in the context of system) and GUI testing (in the social context).API driven IoT test automation is still overshadowed by simulations run in virtual environments as IoT systems are complex and have their own protocols (like CoAP, MQTT and ZigBee in addition to Bluetooth andWi-Fi), are subject to regulatory requirements and use high-level programming languages.
When to stop testing: For game testing, IoT testing and nonsafety-critical embedded systems, subjective criteria like quality that’s good enough, budget and time to market decide when to stop testing. However, for safety-critical embedded systems, you can’t stop on the basis of subjective criteria as the bar for “good enough” is pretty high.
New age testing practices help in improving the quality of product engineering services while supporting innovation, cost control and shorter product development lifecycles. TechArcis leverages its testing expertise and modern technology to constantly innovate and launch product engineering services that meet client needs and bring more business your way.
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