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Regression testing: it sounds boring but can be a real blocker to business change

  • April 7, 2021
  • General
  • Author: Oskar Kindbom
    • When I started my career as a tester it was in a Regression test team. Our job was to run the same tests over and over to make sure that nothing had been broken by an update to the application, or a change to the platform it was running on. Back in those days we were seen as a roadblock because we made sure to stop any changes that would impact the product in a negative way. Today, we look at regression testing in a completely different light. Instead of being a roadblock at the end of the journey, regression testing is the grease on the wheels of change – throughout the journey. And if the wheels of change run slowly, your business can be severely disrupted, especially in this era of business agility and digital transformation.

      Introducing regression testing early in the development life cycle ensures that changes can be made quickly, knowing that those changes won’t have a negative impact on the existing system. When regression testing is only performed at the end of the development cycle, there is a risk that weeks or even months of development effort may have to be reinvested.

      So how does regression testing go from being a roadblock to accelerating the delivery of quality improvements?

      Essentially, by incorporating regression testing as soon as a change starts to be implemented. Automated tests help to quickly provide feedback on changes. If we are going to fail, we want to fail fast, and automated testing is the best tool to achieve that. There are however many pitfalls to look out for when automating tests. If automated testing is not done correctly, you could end up spending all your efforts on maintaining and updating tests without getting any clear results. At Procensol, we complement the automated tests with exploratory testing where we investigate all the “dark corners” of the application. To many people the term “exploratory testing” means randomly pressing buttons, but nothing could be further from the truth. Done correctly, it’s a structured way of exploring an application with a specific mission in mind.

      These processes are part of the Procensol Quality Assurance service, which focuses on accelerating Agile development teams by providing fast and accurate feedback. Applying modern methods and proven techniques ensures that defects are found as early as possible in the project. We also provide post-implementation testing for Waterfall and Prince2 projects, ensuring that all required gates are completed on time.

      Some of the services provided by the Quality Assurance service include:

      • Test Management: Test Coaching, Test Strategies, Test Plans, and Test Reports.
      • Test Execution: Integration Testing, System Testing, End to End Testing, Regression Testing, and User Acceptance Testing.
      •  Test Automation: Unit Testing, API Testing, and UI Testing.
      • Test Advisory Services: Setting up of Test Centre of Excellence, Discovery services to identify and rectify testing related issues, and Quality Assurance Transformation.

      Things have come a long way since regression testing was seen as a roadblock. My team now accelerates change rather than restricting it, and we are a vital part of enabling safe, successful, fast-paced organisational improvement.

  • About the Author

    Oskar Kindbom

    Consultant

    Oskar is the lead for Procensol’s test practice. He is based in Brisbane, Australia and has extensive Test Lead experience for government and commercial enterprises in Australia and Sweden.

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