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Codeless Testing: What no one is telling you?

Codeless Testing has been a buzzword in the testing industry for some time now. What do you think, - is it all gold or just glitter?

Let’s find out.

Pros:

1. Intuitive User Interface to speed up the test automation

Codeless automation testing tools have been designed keeping in mind the non-technical users as well. Each person involved in the project can play a part in test case creation and runs. These testing solutions are designed in this manner.

This eliminates the need of creating a scripting framework through a programming language, which is undoubtedly time-consuming.

Moreover, few tools provide drag and drop or record-and-playback facilities to their users. Which can be used for simpler software applications to automate their testing in a jiffy.

2. Minimum training required to start automation

With codeless testing tools, testers or any person who is going to perform the testing needs to learn the basic UI and functions of the tool. Which are already intuitive and easy to learn, hence the testing can be started from day 1, without any extensive training requirement.

3. Low costs for script and system maintenance

Codeless testing tools provide the ability to create test cases using mainly the UI of the tool. There is no involvement of programming scripts which makes it easier to maintain the test cases and related activities.

Also, the devices involved in testing are not maintained in-house usually. The test lab is available on the cloud through the service provider. Therefore, the maintenance of the system/devices is taken care of by the service provider.

This clears a major overhead from the in-house testing/maintenance team. This eradicates expenditure of major costs and time on script and system maintenance

4. Faster testing and delivery

When using conventional testing methods the testing is dependent on the coding of testing frameworks. Which in turn is dependent on the expertise of the testing team involved from a programming perspective. Scripting a framework from scratch is time-consuming and costly.

When using an intelligent, AI-based, NLP-driven codeless testing solution, there is no need to code from scratch. Actually, there is no need to code at all, the standard functionally available in an automation framework is already present.

For example, the reporting, defect logging, and tracking, requirement mapping, test cases repository, test data, CI/CD, everything has an in-built structure and function. This makes the testing process fast and delivery faster.

Also, codeless testing tools like Testsigma, provide the shift-left testing approach to automate the tests. Where you can create test cases before the application is actually coded. TDD(Test Driven Development), BDD(Behavior Driven Development), API services testing are examples of the shift-left approaches.

5. Enhances team collaboration

Codeless testing works on the principle of shared resources, test cases, knowledge, and workflows for automation. As in CI/CD, the latest testing status and scripts are always available to all team members. Any changes in the artifacts will reflect immediately which helps all the teams involved to be on the same page.

Also, the codeless testing tools provide the advantage of integration with third-party tools like Slack, email, etc. These integrations provide required notifications and alerts to all of the team members.

6. Helps in increasing the scope of automation testing

In a scenario where the conventional method of testing is being used the script will take time to be ready for testing. Also, due to the time constraint involved, the number of test cases covered will be less.

When using a scriptless testing tool the number of test cases covered will be huge, because of the ease of automation. Therefore, codeless testing helps in increasing the scope of automation testing in a project.

7. Saves costs and time for other required activities

Now we understand that the use of codeless testing saves precious cost and time during testing activities. This saved cost can be used for other required activities like marketing, acquisition of some other required tools for the betterment of the project.

The saved time can be used for exploratory and ad-hoc testing of the application to uncover potential bugs.

A blog providing a perspective about the future of codeless testing is here.

Cons:

1. Provides an abstraction layer between testers and automation scripts

The tools which look codeless are not actually codeless or scriptless, they are using some script or programs which are hidden from the end-user. What the customer sees is a user-friendly UI, with drag-and-drop features to write test cases.

2. Non-customizable ground-level details

Codeless testing tools come up with their in-built modules and systems. The functionality details of reporting, test cases, requirements, UI, etc. are already built. This leaves no scope for ground-level customization by the testers because there is an abstraction layer between them and the actual hidden code.

This may cause trouble if the tool is performing in its standard manner and we want to change some behaviour by coding. Therefore, the scriptless testing tools should come with the user’s ability to insert pieces of code.

E.g. Debugging, because the tool is provided by the service provider and we cannot insert our breaking points because there is no programming script. We need to be dependent on the provided functionalities we cannot insert our own.

Thus, in such cases look for a tool that provides such features that won’t block your customization and debugging activities.

3. Project-specific data and scripts shared on cloud

Most of the codeless testing tools work on browsers via the internet. The test data and scripts are created, accessed, and executed on the cloud. The resources provided by the service provider are usually shared among various organizations. This increases the chances of data hacking and provides unethical access to sensitive organizational data.

Thus, when you go for a cloud-based testing tool, make sure that your data remains secure.

4. Not free like open source automation testing tools

There are open-source automation testing tools that are free to download and use by their users. Efficient and good codeless testing tools usually are not free because there is a huge team working behind their success. Thus, users may be required to pay for the codeless test automation solutions.

This can be problematic for small organizations that do not have the budget for any extra tool. So, they may choose to continue using an open-source automation testing tool- conventional or codeless.

Conclusion

There is no doubt that codeless automation testing tools are the future. The journey has already started and it's going to be better with each passing day. The codeless tools we have right now may not be mature enough, but they will provide better services to their users with time. The feedback and review provided by their users may help them to perform and deliver better. Security of such codeless automation tools requires special attention.

Choosing a conventional automation testing tool requires proper planning and discussion. The same is the case with codeless automation testing tools. It is imperative to discuss, analyze and decide about the project-specific requirements such as support for cross-browser testing, mobile testing, API testing, UI testing, etc. Also, the features like reusability, scalability, access from anywhere, maintainability, team collaboration, reporting, etc. should be assessed before starting testing with a codeless automation testing tool.

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