How Service Virtualization can help you realize your Quality Engineering Transformation Journey?

service virtualization for quality engineering transformation

2016 has been a year of experimentation and actual implementation coupled with hands-on consumer experience of innovations in technology. It’s been a year where we are experiencing the connected world, all thanks to the devices that we have been using, and particularly digital transformation.

Various technology powerhouses have been monopolizing over diverse aspects of technology. Microsoft remains the ultimate choice for software and to build an all-inclusive computer system, Apple continues to master the high-end portable computers/devices domain, and then the unbeatable Android Operating System that has almost taken over the smartphone market with its popularity and pricing.

Every technology in every segment is gaining excellence and the desired market share. It is addictive and a technology buff will always end up owning any and every new device in the market whether it is a need or a want. What makes technology so indispensable?

The U. S. Technology Device Ownership Survey by the Pew Research Center states that a typical American owns a wide range of devices, namely, desktops, laptops, smartphones, gaming console, ipods, etc. The question is, why can’t a single device bring an all-inclusive experience for the user?

Can’t a well-connected and upgraded desktop play good music, support gaming, and help catch up on a movie from Netflix? Except the portability factor, the irony of the connected world is that it still doesn’t help bring a wholesome experience. For instance, you know that an average desktop cannot provide you the gaming experience, comfort of reading a book on Kindle, experience of watching a movie, acoustics of an EDM, and so on that you would expect from your respective devices.

Is there any mechanism or a technology approach that can ensure a holistic and integrated experience? Can Virtualization/Cloud solve issues related to integration and experience?

Tech Target (a popular tech portal) describes Virtualization as a technology where an application, guest operating system or data storage is separated from the actual hardware or software under scrutiny. Specifically, server virtualization uses a software layer that emulates the original hardware.

Service Virtualization helps create virtual rather than actual form of any component, for instance, an operating system, a server, a storage device, or any resource under scrutiny. Literally, it enables you to create a digitized version of any device. At the same time, it ensures that the efficiency of emulators is maintained so as to deliver the required results.

It may lead to issues like insufficient control, irregular crashes, compatibility issues, and more. But what if the entire software/operating system is hosted on the Cloud, and can be tested or experienced on any device of your choice? This could help surpass the hardware gap swiftly by loading everything on the Cloud, as any device could be just an enabler to view the functioning of the software/application.

In this way, virtualization of software helps bridge the widening gap between technology and devices to help attain Quality.

Why Service Virtualization?

Service Virtualization is a method implemented to emulate behaviour of components across various applications, such as API-driven application, Cloud applications, and Service Oriented Architectures (SOA). It is mainly utilized by QA and Testing teams to gain access to various dependent components required to assess the Application Under Test (AUT).

When dependent components are ‘virtualized’, testing and development teams can proceed without retrieving the real/LIVE components. This helps in keeping the testing environment consistent while the application is tested for efficiency and quality.

Following are some key benefits of Service Virtualization in terms of Quality Engineering.

  • You can save substantial costs and time by not configuring the physical environments.
  • It reduces footprints of physical servers and improves utilization of resources.
  • It reduces expenditure on third party and access to physical environment.
  • It enables you to shift-left by pushing testing ahead in the SDLC process and ensuring quality
  • It cuts down the limitation of the test environment, as components are more scalable virtually.
  • It makes Performance Testing more scalable.

Shift-Left and Test Automation

Service Virtualization mainly enables continuous testing to speed up the delivery process and automates the testing for complex applications way ahead in the development lifecycle. Incorporating testing and automating it way ahead in the development cycle ensures that quality is assured right from the beginning.

Apart from this, Test Automation helps deliver overall functional, regression, load, and integration testing to address issues and challenges related to quality, specifically with complex and integrated applications. It works effectively with Service Virtualization by helping teams to automate integration testing for complex applications right from the beginning.

This helps cut down testing hurdles and deliver superior quality software at speed and with market-readiness.

Service Virtualization enables access to the latest

Service Virtualization boosts scalability and can provide access to the latest components for testing in the virtual space. It provides effective solutions for accessing key applications, using a preferred operating system and also performing advanced tasks from anywhere. The only requirement is, an uninterrupted data connectivity.

Virtualization can be segmented under various categories:

  • Network Virtualization: It is a method of integrating the existing resources in a network by segmenting the available bandwidth into channels and further assigning it to a server or device in real time.
  • Storage Virtualization: This is where physical storage from multiple network devices is pooled in to create a single storage device that can be managed centrally. It is particularly used for storage area networks.
  • Server Virtualization: This entails management of servers to save the user from dealing with the complexities of server configurations during resource sharing.
  • Data Virtualization: This separates the old technical details of data and manages data, providing access to much more applicable and relevance for specific business needs.
  • Desktop Virtualization: The user gets access to the desktop from a distant location, making the process portable and accessible from anywhere. Considering the workstation is running in a data center, it makes the overall activity more secure.
  • Application Virtualization: This separates the application layer from the Operating System, where the application can be executed irrespective of the OS running in the background.

Virtualization can be perceived under the overall aura of Enterprise IT, which also incorporates Autonomic Computing. It is a set-up where the IT environment manages itself based on the expected activities. The overall objective of virtualization is to enhance scalability, and bring down costs associated with infrastructure and resources.

Gallop’s Testing Center of Excellence (TCoE) Framework is designed to provide a holistic and integrated approach towards testing. It is a proprietary framework that comprises core elements across the entire organization. We have Cloud-enabled labs for testing devices and application in the virtual environment.

Connect with us to achieve improved efficiency, optimize people/tool utilization, and reduce testing costs. We give you a potent strategy to enhance and transform your quality engineering process.

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

[Infographic] Internet Of Things (IoT), Future Tested

Embedded Devices

To embed this Infographic on your website, we thought of making it a bit easier for you. Here is the embed code below. Copy the code and paste it in the <body> of your webpage. That’s it.

Share this Image On Your Site

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

Guidewire Testing: Can Test Automation Help Realize Higher ROI for Insurance Industry?

guidewire testing - can test automation help realize higher roi

On the latest release of 2016.2 Guidewire Insurance Platform™, Wade Bontrager, Vice President, Business Owner, Predictive Analytics, Guidewire Software said, “This release delivers on our goal of continually adding new sources of value for our customers, particularly in the fast-paced Data and Digital engagement areas, enabling our customers to mine and deploy far more insight from the explosion of data available to the industry today”.

This estimates how Digital Transformation and Digital Engagement is making an impact across every industry and sector. Specially, the Insurance sector is facing some inherent challenges today, namely, more competition, changing consumer preferences, compliance with Federal regulations and growing digital confluence.

Guidewire Software Inc., popularly known as Guidewire is a provider of software products to Property and Casualty (P/C) insurers. A software published based in Foster City, California, Guidewire offers core back-end software for property and casualty insurance carriers in the US and worldwide.

The Guidewire Insurance Suite™ offers a comprehensive bunch of applications that support various insurance operations, namely, underwriting, policy administration, billing, and claims management. The Insurance Suite applications comprise a set of shared platform modules that include the property and casualty insurance lifecycle and particularly change the legacy systems developed and installed internally by the carrier.

Insurance carriers across the world implement Guidewire for some recognizable benefits. Some of the known names in the sector are Canadian Automobile Association Insurance Company (Ontario), Hartford Steam Boiler, Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, The Cincinnati Insurance Companies, and United Automobile Insurance Company (UAIC).

Guidewire’s three aspects, namely, operations, data and analytics, and digital engagement have enabled over 200 Property and Casualty carriers to enhance operational efficiency, speed-to-market and customer experience.

What are the most proven benefits of Guidewire?

Guidewire Suite offers a tested solution that focuses on optimizing insurance operations that have been developed with insights from an active global customer community. The overall objective is to further empower employees, agents, and customers to help adapt to the changing market dynamics.

Guidewire has been built with some clear objectives –

  1. Enable Business Agility
  2. Empower customers and improve retention
  3. Improve Operational Performance, Responsiveness, and Decision-Making
  4. Innovate with Digital Channels
  5. Build globally-accessible business model

Additionally, there are some clear factors considered while designing and developing Guidewire products –

  • Flexibility, is an important factor considered while developing the software suite. Moreover, it has to be agile enough to adapt the market changes. Particularly, the flexibility has to come by region, by business, and by functional area.
  • User Experience, is at the core of every development and has to ensure holistic experience. The focus is to design specifically to ensure the kind of experience that users expect, than to take the mundane route.
  • Performance and Reliability, are key factors considering while developing. The platform is built on a modern architecture to cater to the property and casualty insurance industry specifications.

While the benefits are overwhelming, the challenges of implementing Guidewire are inducing too. Choosing a platform will be just the first step. What do you do next?

  • Deployment option
    • Implementing the entire suite of Guidewire systems is the fastest way to comprehend the all-out benefits, however, risks can be reduced by rolling it out by business line/any other parameters.
    • There are carriers who selectively deploy Guidewire’s core systems one at a time across regions and business segments. This mainly helps in minimizing the impact of transformation across an enterprise.
    • Another option is to take a mid-way. Implementation experts suggest a combined approach, one system can be implemented followed by another system getting implemented simultaneously.

An experienced testing and implementation partner can definitely bring value in this sphere. With successful and tested implementation, Guidewire’s technology platform can enable insurers to reduce the long-standing cost of ownership by consolidating a single suite of applications.

Let’s understand the challenges generally experienced while implementing and testing Guidewire Suite.

  • Minimum know-how about QA and its criticality across the enterprise
  • Inadequate processed and QA guidelines across diverse business streams
  • Frequent upgrades in user requirements
  • Delay in execution of tests due to absence of code development
  • Absence of functional and non-functional requirements documentation

While the implementation needs are taken care of, the testing and integration of the Suite within the functional spheres is absolutely critical. Testing remains a major challenge and manual testing can be time consuming and tedious. So, the benefits of Test Automation in such a scenario are loud and clear.

Efficiency in Testing

Efficiency and consistency are significant benefits of Test Automation. While manual testing can be time consuming, automation can make the process repetitive, faster, consistent, save costs, testing efforts, and bring in more ROI.

Reusability of tests

Reusability increases profitability across the product lifecycle. Test Automation framework makes tests reusable and with every new test and discovery of bug, the test directory gets upgraded and market-ready. This minimizes costs and mainly helps justify investment in the testing tool.

Stability

Test Automation framework offers a consistent platform for your complete testing needs, as it reduces monotony that arises due to some mundane tests. It further reduces errors with availability of pre-recorded instruction. Regression tests check whether the existing functionalities are suitable for latest versions, when new development takes place with the software.

Longevity

Test Automation serves as a core component for further testing tasks. Automated testing software are designed and customized to provide flexibility, while complying with the latest security and testing protocols. In this way Test Automation makes the overall process and framework resourceful for a longer period.

Simulation

Test Automation uniquely simulates a typical user environment. For instance, Graphics User Interface (GUI) testing is one of the most tedious testing processes. Test Automation helps mock user driven environments and checks for real-time issues.

Gallop Solutions has been partnering with Insurance carriers across North America to offer robust testing solutions and garner better ROI from their Test Automation tools. While working with one of the leading Insurance companies and by implementing Test Automation, Gallop was able to achieve almost 80% reduction in Test Execution time.

The key requirement of the client was end-to-end testing of Guidewire Suite and Legacy Applications. Gallop team sketched a comprehensive strategy for functional and non-functional testing and built a Testing Center of Excellence (TCoE) with standardized QA processes.

Most importantly, the team developed a scalable, platform-agnostic test automation framework to jumpstart the testing process and ensured seamless integration.

At Gallop, we understand the quantum of investment you make in Guidewire Insurance product and the kind of ROI you expect from your huge investments. Gallop’s Insurance TCoE comprises pre-built test scripts (Manual and Automated) for the different modules of Guidewire product suite, for example, Policy Center, Claim Center, Billing Center, Under Writing Management, Mobile portals, and much more.

Several insurance companies have benefited by implementing Gallop’s Independent software testing services and Guidewire specific pre-built testing suite. We can help you reduce post production defects, improve test automation coverage and reduce your test cycle duration.

Gartner suggests that Insurance Technology Startups, popularly known as ‘Insurtechs’ are the next big thing in the insurance sector. Connect with us to build your business for the next big sensation and get your Guidewire effectively tested and implemented.

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

10 Benefits Selenium Test Automation Brings for the Publishing Industry

benefits of selenium test automation

The age when you could literally ‘judge the book by its cover’ has vanished! A recent report states that publishers are increasingly using Big Data to sell their book rights globally. With Digitization dominating every aspect of entertainment and infotainment, Big Data Analytics and Automation of services can prove lucrative for the publishing industry. Web app/Website is now the first place to review a book and is a potent platform to reach out to the niche readers.

As the ebook market flourishes over the years, there is a massive amount of data in store for retailers and publishers. There was a time when the publishing sector was not powered with such data, but digitization of the overall reading experience and marketing has killed all the inherent limitations of the sector.

Likewise, a recent report states that the global publishing industry has experienced positive growth over the last five years and is expected to reach US $348 billion in 2017 with a CAGR of 2.3% over the next five years. Amongst some other benefits, Internet publishing, foreign investment and easing of regulatory restrictions are bound to give a boost to the publishing industry in the near future.

e-books publishing industry

E-books, E-Reading devices like Kindle are creating the right buzz and giving a makeover to the publishing industry. In this scenario, revamping and automating the digital platform is highly critical. For publishing houses, the website is the first page of the book that the readers will judge and rest their decisions.

How do you ensure that your website is giving those consistent results and offering an engaging experience to the rampant footfalls on the site? Testing is the key and Test Automation is the way to ensure your website’s expected look and feel.

With Web Application Testing it is imperative to address issues like website’s functionality, security issues, user interface, compatibility and performance. Test Automation provides a framework to run tests across browsers with no particular alterations. Importantly, it mechanically drives the same tests with a combination of various forms of data to enhance test coverage.

Some key Test Automation benefits are:

  • It ensures higher ROI on the initially huge investments done.
  • You can test 24*7 from a remotely held device as well.
  • There is less manual intervention, so the possibility of errors diminishes.
  • It makes the test scripts reusable – need new scripts every time even with changes in the version of the OS on the device and the tests can recur without any errors.
  • Automation helps you find bugs at an early stage.
  • Automated tests make the process more reliable and the tests more dependable.
  • Most importantly, it enables testing in volumes. For instance, it allows you to run tests on thousands of mobile devices. Now, this is impossible with Manual Testing.

Selenium is the most popularly used freeware and open source automation tool. The benefits of Selenium for Test Automation are immense. Amongst the many benefits, Selenium is an Open-Source tool and is easy to get started with for functional testing of web applications.

Importantly, it enables record and playback for testing web applications and can run multiple scripts across various browsers. Now that Selenium 3.0 is on its way and testing experts are mapping the roadmap for 4.0 and 5.0, the benefits of Selenium test automation hold relevance across diverse business segments.

  1. Open-Source:

As mentioned earlier, the biggest strength of Selenium is that it is a freeware and a portable tool. It has no upfront direct costs involved. The tool can be freely downloaded and the support for it is freely available, as it is community-based.

  1. Supports languages:

Selenium supports a range of languages, including Java, Perl, Python, C#, Ruby, Groovy, Java Script, etc. It has its own script, but it doesn’t limit it to that language. It can work with various languages and whatever the developers/testers are comfortable with.

  1. Supports Operating Systems:

Selenium can operate and support across multiple Operating Systems (OS) like Windows, Mac, Linux, UNIX, etc. With Selenium Suite of solutions, a tailored testing suite can be created over any platform and then executed on another one. For instance, you can create test cases using Windows OS and run it with ease on a Linux based system.

  1. Support across browsers:

Selenium provides support across multiple browsers, namely, Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari, etc. This becomes highly resourceful while executing tests and testing it across various browsers simultaneously.

The browsers supported by the Selenium packages are:

  • Selenium IDE can be used with Firefox as a plug-in
  • Selenium RC and Webdriver supports diverse browsers such as Internet Explorer
  1. Support for programming language and framework

Selenium integrates with programming languages and various frameworks. For instance, it can integrate with ANT or Maven type of framework for source code compilation. Further, it can integrate with TestNG testing framework for testing applications and reporting purposes. It can integrate with Jenkins or Hudson for Continuous Integration (CI) and can even integrate with other Open-Source tools to supports other features.

  1. Tests across devices

Selenium Test Automation can be implemented for Mobile web application automation on Android, IPhone, and Blackberry. This can help in generating necessary results and address issues on a continuous basis.

  1. Constant updates

Selenium support is community based and an active community support enable constant updates and upgrades. These upgrades are readily available and do not require specific training. This makes Selenium resourceful and cost-effective as well.

  1. Loaded Selenium Suits

Selenium is not just a singular tool or utility, it a loaded package of various testing tools and so is referred to as a Suite. Each tool is designed to cater to different testing needs and requirements of test environments.

Additionally, Selenium comes with capabilities to support Selenium IDE, Selenium Grid, and Selenium Remote Control (RC).

  1. Ease of implementation

Selenium offers a user-friendly interface that helps create and execute tests easily and effectively. Its Open-Source features help users to script their own extensions that makes them easy to develop customized actions and even manipulate at an advanced level.

Tests run directly across browsers and the users can watch while the tests are being executed. Additionally, Selenium’s reporting capabilities are one of the reasons for choosing it, as it allows testers to extract the results and take follow-up actions.

  1. Reusability and Add-ons

Selenium Test Automation Framework uses scripts that can be tested directly across multiple browsers. Concurrently, it is possible to execute multiple tests with Selenium, as it covers almost all aspects of functional testing by implementing add-on tools that broaden the scope of testing.

Likewise, there is another school of thought that talks about some gaps in Selenium Automation Testing. For instance, Test Automation experts also say that Selenium is not an all-inclusive tool for automating the testing of web applications, as it needs third-party frameworks and language support to get absolutely functional and show the needed results.

Gallop’s test automation CoE takes precedence in leveraging Selenium as a tool of choice for automating web application testing, performing functional regression automation, and developing automated tests. We have worked with some innovative businesses in North America to offer some phenomenal testing strategies and solutions.

The Gallop team collaborated with a Philadelphia-based leading Academic Research Paper Publishing House to offer Testing Automation services by leveraging Selenium. The client was observing growing popularity of its research publications and its niche readership accessing the website had shot up.

The publishing house needed support with its website that required testing across browsers and Operating Systems (OS). The key challenge was to address the layout issues across different OS-device-browser combination. This was a challenge, as majority of the pages were syntactically incorrect. Additionally, the Gallop team had to deal with functionality issues and JavaScript compatibility as well.

By leveraging Selenium Testing, Gallop developed a utility using browser stack and executed multiple scripts simultaneously across browsers/OS combinations that helped address the functionality issues. Finally, the team achieved 100% test coverage for cross-browser compatibility.

Additionally, a Browser stack utility developed by Gallop executed all test scripts across different browsers and OS combinations and identified bugs/defects much faster.

The publishing industry is highly fragmented and statistics show that North America is dominating the game. Additionally, a combination of factors such as literacy level, income level, changing life style, advertiser spending, technological changes, and government regulations are seen to impact industry dynamics significantly.

The key enabler identified here is huge transformation powered by Digitization.

Connect with Gallop to leverage our unified test automation framework to overcome key challenges in Selenium test automation and get your Website/Web Apps functionally ready for your niche audience.

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

[Infographic] Testing the Retail Therapy

The retail sector always demands innovation and exclusive attempts to woo the customers. It can’t ever lose its charm!

The challenges are immense, but the opportunities are massive. Can a robust Test Automation strategy help the retail sector hop over the challenges and tap the opportunities?

This infographic discusses various challenges in the retail sector and emphasizes on the need to strategically adopt Test Automation for retail and achieve speed to market and ensure quality.

Testing the retail therapy

To embed this Infographic on your website, we thought of making it a bit easier for you. Here is the embed code below. Copy the code and paste it in the <body> of your webpage. That’s it.

Share this Image On Your Site

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

10 Best Practices to Achieve Quality@Speed with Continuous Integration

continuos integration

On 27th September 2016, Salesforce.com Inc. introduced a new e-commerce service, further to its $2.8 billion acquisition of Demandware Inc. The Salesforce Commerce Cloud is here to enable customers to set-up online storefronts, in-store tablets/kiosks, and further add commerce functions with software support delivered over the internet. According to research by Gartner, Salesforce faces stiff competition from Oracle Corp., SAP SE, and International Business Machines Corp., who are the biggies in this category.

Whether B2B or B2C, every business/enterprise needs pace for faster turnaround time and gain speed to market. Consequently, innovations and testing the effectiveness of these innovative features has to be done in real time. It doesn’t end there! Every consumer/enterprise application launched has to be tested for its performance and functional efficiency across diverse technology platforms, devices, and Operating Systems (OS).

Can Continuous Integration help?

So, how do you test the inevitable and test the most unforeseen BUG? Continuous Testing is a development practice, where developers need to relentlessly integrate the code into a shared repository during a day’s test plan. In order to allow development teams to detect problems way ahead, an automated build is created to verify each test incorporated.

Continuous Integration can help detect errors faster and resolve way ahead in the development process. If the continuous approach is not followed, it will take stretched periods between integrations, which makes fixing up these gaps a longer and an exceedingly stressful task. It will further reduce constant back-pedalling to identify issues and focus more on building various features.

Some obvious benefits that Continuous Integration brings to the table are:

  • A big ‘No’ to longer and stressful integrations
  • Enhanced visibility of the development process for better interaction and resolution
  • Identification of issues faster and resolution in real time
  • Low on Debugging, High on building
  • No wait and watch strategy to evaluate your code’s proper functioning
  • Deliver software on time with market-readiness

Continuous Integration comes with various key principles and best practices. The most important practice is, establishing the ritual of Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment. This eliminates the need to authorize and delegate from the top. It is automated and self-triggered.

So, while we gauge the benefits, let’s consider the best practices that Continuous Integration brings for enterprises that don’t just look at speed, but rather quality@speed.

  1. Continuous Integration enables Continuous Deployment

Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment are connected concepts and fundamentally refer to the software/application’s release in the Live environment with automated tests. With Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment you are not just reducing risks, but catching bugs in time and getting your software/application ready for the market.

Ultimately, when the risks get lowered, it helps prompt adaption to business requirements and the consumer demands. It further enables greater collaboration between Operations and delivery, maturing the release process for competitive advantage.

  1. Continuous Integration with the right approach

Continuous Integration is generally implemented with Agile, Test-Driven-Development (TDD) and Test Automation. If implement in this flow, Continuous Integration can prove to be an obvious fit for your development process and can help reduce the challenges for better results.

The idea is to adopt select an appropriate tool that fits the existing technology ecosystem that fits in effectively within your existing development environment. Continuous Integration helps build and integrate the software frequently. Moreover, it is recommended to execute unit tests as part of the overall integration process.

  1. Detect early, Resolve faster

Faster detection of issues/defects helps resolve the problems faster. If the integration and software development process does not incorporate testing, the overall cycle can go reverse that will further incur risks. When the development team strives to add new features to the code and detect bugs, the code’s health can go for a toss. At the same time if you have Continuous Integration server in the process, it helps you keep your software in a better shape.

  1. Segregate software builds from deployment

Continuous Integration helps you to completely separate the build and deployment process, where both are treated as independent activities with no specific dependencies. While the developer may focus on the build process, integration could be taken up a sole activity by the testing team. The Continuous Integration server can trigger a developer’s check in for integration and a tester’s check-in for deployment.

This helps kill the dependencies and enables dedicated attention. It helps to identify problems with the build at an early stage and move progressively towards getting the software in the production environment.

  1. Continuous Integration with Test Automation

Whether your enterprise has adopted Test Automation or is considering it for faster test cycles, Continuous Integration is here to enable you. When the recurring and repeatable tests are automated, it helps teams to deliver better and faster. Continuous Integration powered with Test Automation helps cut manual efforts and helps testing and development teams to look at the SDLC process more creatively.

When it comes to testing, identifying the failed codes is more important than bragging about the successful ones. It is bound to make your software/application stronger.

  1. Continuous Testing with Agile

Continuous Integration with an Agile methodology helps gain speedy delivery by ensuring quality. Project Managers and development teams are advised to implement continuous integration in the overall release management strategy. The overall SDLC process – write, build, integrate, test, debug and deploy can be complex.

The Agile process enables flexibility and helps teams go back and review the build for accuracy. This further helps improve delivery time and releases testers to look beyond the obvious in the process.

  1. Continuous Integration for transparency

At a broader level, Continuous Integration helps provide transparency to the overall Development and Quality Assurance (QA) process. It helps indicate failed tests and the reasons for that failure, which further helps in leading to some logical reasoning and required action for improvements.

  1. Continuous Testing for reduced bugs

Bugs and defects are an inevitable component of the SDLC process. With Continuous Integration the instances of bug accumulation gets reduced substantially. Thanks to the overall automation it provides, bugs are identified early and risks are reduced.

  1. Continuous Integration for Automated Regression Tests

Continuous Testing facilitates automated regression tests, where Test packages hosted in the QA repository can be maintained and implemented by multiple QA team members and executed whenever a new code is deployed to the environment.

When every new defect gets added to the automated test case, it becomes easy to effectively build a substantial regression testing suite. This enables automation of the regression tests and reduces the efforts of the testing teams.

  1. Smoke Tests with Continuous Integration

As mentioned earlier, Test packages written by QA and maintained with the Continuous Integration systems can help automate the build and test process. Further Smoke Tests can be written to monitor the production system and deliverables can be made available for a wider group by testing the software at various stages.

Continuous Integration comprises automated deployment, deployment scripts for testing every build to ensure that no code related issues arise in the production.

Gallop’s Test Automation Accelerator Kit (GTAAK) has been enabling end-to-end automation of applications across the SDLC to bring speed to market and enhance the quality of testing. Connect with our Test Automation leads to build QA best practices and gain quality with speed.

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

Can Digital Testing Strategies Really Help Implement Quality Engineering?

digital quality assurance testing

Market research reports have been defining and redefining the concept of Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) for enterprises. At the same time, these reports have also been emphasizing on the security aspects associated with the Enterprise Applications that are and in the near future will determine the impact of BYOD policies across an organization. Digital QA / Digital Quality Assurance and Testing is seen as a catalyst to power the implementation and effectiveness of Enterprise Applications for businesses. The new-age digital innovations and the unstoppable popularity of smart gadgets like smart phones, tablets, robotics, and new operating systems (OS) is making digital testing and digital QA a much more critical mandate.

A research report by Mckinsey states that companies are expecting digital initiatives to deliver annual growth and cost-effectiveness of almost 5-10% or more in the coming 3 to 5 years. Enterprises are making substantial investments in various enterprise-level digital initiatives with a key business objective to strengthen their customer experience strategy, and are also expecting equally exciting ROI.

As software testing and industry experts validate, there is no definite way of testing the effectiveness and seamless functioning of digital enterprises. It is an evolving pattern that is inventive and progressive at the same time. A digital enterprise mandates a new but proven strategy of quality assurance that is more focused on the outcome and not just enables the digital transformation, but accelerates the business growth. Whether born digital or loaded with redundant legacy systems, every organization today is facing a pressing need to embrace digital quality assurance to transform digitally.

Solutions ensuring Digital Assurance are enabling enterprises to unlock the value of digital economy and enhance customer experience. Besides ensuring better customer experience, it also facilitates seamless operations of various enterprise level applications, making them secure for desired performance and expected convergence across the digital platform.

While we are experiencing an absolute paradigm shift for both businesses and IT operations, the digital race is all about bringing in more creativity while adopting digital technologies and staying competitive. The deadly nexus between Social Media-Analytics-Mobile-Cloud (SMAC) and Internet of Things (IoT) & Smart devices have proven to be the key enablers for Digital Transformation. These are the major tools that are helping enterprises to get closer to the customers, empower employees, and transform business processes. No industry can escape this change.

This is it – the big Change

digital-quality-assurance

Quality Engineering and Assurance helps the overall software development process with required testing support across various hardware and software. It ensures that testing begins way ahead in the overall SDLC, ensuring maximum test coverage and quality.

Digital Assurance helps CEOs & CXOs assess their enterprise for digital readiness, draw a roadmap for transformation, and ensure complete business assurance.

Every organization is today working towards translating Digital Transformation into commercial success. This specifically needs the right digital skills and proven expertise to assure digital effectiveness across the enterprise. What is the key to achieve this?

A strategic and result-oriented approach that automates and integrates the entire landscape for seamless functioning.

Can Digital Testing strategies really help implement Quality Engineering?

A comprehensive Digital Assurance & Testing strategy provides scalable and reusable assets and enablers for improving the overall efficiency of Quality Assurance and Testing processes. Suggested below are some key aspects that an experienced testing partner considers while strategizing a QA approach for digital enterprises.

  • Omni-Channel Assurance:

It is an approach that takes into account a test strategy for all the channels, on the basis of the patterns of user interactions. Digital Assurance is expected to provide consistent experience across all channels of user interaction – physical as well as virtual. The user must not just feel connected, but also have an overall cohesive experience.

Testing should prominently focus on functional testing across various channels of interactions. Test environments can be virtualized to create an ecosystem for testing, which can be an effective approach to confirm a particular behaviour/outcome. The two integral aspects of Omni-Channel Assurance are:

  1. Various devices: The application should be tested across all kind of devices, such as tablets, mobiles, wearable devices, web, etc., where every platform/device should provide consistent experience. This can be ensured by implementing Test Automation across devices, for continuous integration as well.
  2. Various platforms: Compatibility across various browsers and operating systems is a must for connected and desired consumer experience. Compatibility testing ensures this and brings seamless experience.
  • Widespread User base:

Internet connectivity and Internet user density is increasing across the globe, where it is estimated that over 50% of the global population has access to Internet. This means, every user anywhere and everywhere should experience the same functionalities. Digital Assurance and comprehensive testing strategies ensure both localization and globalization tests for seamless customer experience.

  • Security Assurance:

With data sensitive applications being hosted across multiple platforms, it is important to test them to check the possible risks and ensure resilience during load situations. Security Assurance and testing measures risks and vulnerabilities of a platform and tests the system for all possible loads/hacks. Particularly, it focuses on application profiling, authentication, encryption algorithms, and data validation.

  • Application Lifecycle automation / Business process automation:

Enterprises are looking at gaining a competitive edge by building quality applications and a robust digital platform for consumers/employees. However, the overall ecosystem is getting complex due to constant innovations, and the traditional ways of testing are getting obsolete. Test Automation for ensuring high velocity and speed to market is coming up effectively and enterprises are increasingly embracing it for minimal glitches.

Business process automation works massively to gain competitive edge, as it helps organizations to scale up effectively with lowered costs and minimal efforts. With start-ups springing up every day, experts claim that process automation can improve the cost performance by almost 90% across various function within an organization.

Digitization/Digital Transformation as they say has less to do to technology, but more with the overall approach. Digital enterprises with a thorough Quality Engineering strategy are better equipped to reinvent their overall business processes and bring agility in their approach.

At Gallop we take pride in building enterprises for the future. We bring about digital transformations by establishing comprehensive testing across the organization’s digital value chain that comprises of digital marketing, web portals, web content, digital assets, web analytics, and the overall digital ecosystem – Cloud, Mobility, Big Data, and Smart devices. Connect with our Thought Leaders in the Digital QA & Testing space for a complete QA strategy and build your enterprise for the Next-Gen.

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

How Test Automation can help Retailers save big bucks

how-test-automation-can-help-retailers-save-big-bucks

Does anyone remember Circuit City? It was one of the top U.S. electronics retailers that went out of business in 2009, as it couldn’t address the new-age needs of the customers. It finally succumbed to its inability to respond smartly and skilfully to the growing popularity of online retailers like Amazon.com.

As consumer experience goes through a chain of transformations, the retail sector has to get geared up accordingly to deal with the changes. Traditional retailers and giants like Walmart have spent over a decade and innumerable billons to restructure and revamp their brick-and-mortar businesses to address the needs of the online shopper.

In August 2016, Walmart, world’s largest retailer and a predominant player in the big-box stores category announced its $3.3-billion-dollar deal with Jet, the year-old online bulk retailer. It has been cited as the largest deal ever for an e-commerce player. While the deal got sealed, Walmart management acknowledged that its online strategy was not generating the desired results and they required external technology and expertise.

At the same time, strong online brands like Amazon are taking a reverse route with a view to reinforce ‘Omni-channel’ retailing. Amazon created news when it opened its first physical bookstore in Seattle’s University Village. This practice has been observed across various online brands, who have opened their physical stores. The objective is to provide seamless experience to customers across physical, online, mobile interface. However, this poses additional challenge for retailers.

These are amongst the many challenges that the retail sector is facing in the wake of the evolving consumer demands and preferences. As some industry experts say, Out-of-the-box thinking for enhanced productivity and competitive advantage continues to remain a challenge for the retail sector. This is where technology comes to rescue, and when technology has to play an integral part, it needs to get tested for the desired performance.

Whether it is a brick and mortar outlet or an online ecommerce platform, IT has been enabling retailers to tackle market challenges and attend effectively to consumer demands.

What is the criticality of IT/technology in the Retail sector? In literal terms, technology works for you 24*7, which is not expected from a human.

  • Know your customer: While the customer shops at your store, goes to the billing counter and while the items get scanned at the Point of Sale (PoS), the retailer gets every possible data to know the customer better and predict the possible preferences. Segmentation of such purchase patterns further enables retailers to gauge the inventory flow that helps to order the required stocks and avoid any out of stock situation.
  • Planned approach: With the right technology platform in place, retailers get equipped with well-analysed information for enabling the business. This further helps get the right results within timelines. Leveraging the right Technology platform helps manage activities and strategize effectively across offline (physical stores) and online stores.
  • Omni-channel approach: Whether the customer is shopping online or offline, technology platforms help retailers to offer consistent and seamless experience. It further helps manage and control activities from a single dedicated space, which not only provides ease of business, but also turns out to be cost-effective.
  • Seamless customer experience: Ecommerce is rapidly evolving and posing innumerable challenges for the long established retail brands. One of the key factors that e-commerce players are able to offer is flawless and personalized online shopping experience. Online shopping portals are increasingly getting interactive and responsive to the customer needs – right from offering impressive options, ordering, immediate cancellations/exchange, and much more.

That’s why they say, online retail is here to transform, but IT/technology is its biggest Enabler.

Some of the key reasons why some retail biggies fail is that they are unable to harness the technology effectively. What works best is to on-board the required technical, implementation, and test automation expertise to make the technology platform work for you!

The digitally connected universe and the mobile-enabled consumer is changing the shape of the retail industry. The retail industry is exceptionally challenged with high operational overhead and lower profit margins. The overheads comprise, maintaining a chain of retail stores, where the profits expected could be absolutely miniscule. At the same time, IT systems are expected to provide the same levels of quality as across any other industry.

Considering some peculiar challenges that the retail domain has been facing, it demands a much more mature software Testing approach. A strong and seasoned testing partner can build an efficient Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC) process that accelerates software development and build comprehensive testing strategy.

Some key testing challenges that the retail sector needs to address are:

  • Testing of legacy systems: What customer needs is a one-stop shop, where the retailer is big or small, it has to store massive loads of merchandise. Large retailers work with IT systems designed almost 20-30 years back, endlessly releasing software. This makes testing complex and test coverage not so effective. This requires end-to-end testing process to effectively test all applications.
  • Managing promotions: While the retailers promote various promotional coupons or activities, it is imperative to offer them online and manage the activities seamlessly across online and offline platforms, where the required IT applications need to get aligned and functional across multiple retails channels. If there is a delay or an error in configuring and testing the applications, it can adversely impact time-to-market. This requires continuous testing for efficient performance and desired outcome across platforms.
  • Online security & Mobile POS Security: There is an increasing need to establish secure presence across the online platforms. This requires secure software development practices and testing practices that create a security testing framework and tools to make the web/mobile interface secure for the customers.

Moreover, the increasing number of POS applications, POS credit card enabled mobile apps, credit card reader devices, and NFC technology, demand thorough security checks for the core infrastructure. There is an additional need to conduct 24*7 application testing across all retail POS applications.

Independent software testing with effective implementation of Test Automation Center of Excellence (CoE) is the need of hour.

Considering there is a constant need to conduct tests across technology platforms and devices, automating tests for effective and consistent results is a much needed approach. The marketplace is flooded with licensed as well Open-Source test automation tools to accelerate time-to-market and ensure quality with cost-effectiveness. In addition, automating the tests further helps ensure performance of the applications that are expected to give recurring results across stores, e-portals, etc.

One of the leading home furnishing and décor retailers in US teamed up with Gallop’s Test Automation experts to reduce their overall testing efforts with improved quality to deliver enhanced customer experience. The retailer needed a mechanism to establish best QA practices to ensure superior experience for its end customers and most importantly sustain in the rapidly evolving retail scenario.

Gallop leveraged the right combination of tools, best practices, and test methodologies to meet business objectives of the client. Our reusable solution assets further helped to cut the engagement costs over a period of time. The client was able to reduce the testing budgets by 30% by leveraging Gallop’s Retail CoE expertise. Gallop takes precedence in providing Test Automation services and has built a dedicated Automation Center of Excellence (ACoE) that is backed by a decade of experience in executing test automation engagements for global clients.

At Gallop, we have been working with leading enterprises in North America and have served Fortune 500 enterprises & ISVs. Enterprises operating across industries have being leveraging Gallop’s Advisory and IP-led Independent Software testing services to gain higher ROI from their Quality Assurance initiatives.

Connect with us for a comprehensive Test Automation strategy that empowers you to not only reach faster to market, but also sustain profitably in the immensely demanding Retail sector

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

Integrating Selenium with Google Drive

Integrating Selenium with Google Drive

New-age technologies have extensively impacted our routine activities and quite positively. Today there are sophisticated and advanced gadgets available to further ease human efforts. While the emerging technologies continue to transform our lives, testing their performance for desired outcome is indispensable.

Test Automation holds numerous advantages to enhance the testing processes and achieve maximum test coverage. Google Drive integration is a case in point. We shall further discuss and understand the various advantages of using Google Drive.

When you integrate with the User Interface (UI) of Google Drive, users can create and open files stored on the drive within the application. This process is applicable across all the Google Drive Web applications. The Google Drive platform provides a bunch of APIs along with client libraries, language-specific examples, and documentation to help you develop apps that can integrate with Google Drive for automation.

sel-logo

Why is using Google Drive for Test Automation recommended?

  • You can create an external file that stores the test data (Input data and Expected Data) as centralized and shared repository.
  • You can populate the test data into Automation Test Script, so that several API’s can be used to read the test data.
  • The total number of scripts required to cover all the possible combinations of test scenarios is very less. Thus, lesser amount of code is required to test a complete set of scenarios.
  • You get increased flexibility and maintainability of automation test scripts, which also offers a clean and
    user-friendly interface.
  • Any change in the test data matrix would not hamper the test script code.
  • It provides effective communication and sharing, so that it is easier for manual and automation test teams to execute the scripts on Cloud with required set of data.
  • Check-in or check-out from the project framework is not required to refactor the test data.
  • High re-usability can be achieved, as tests can be reused across multiple test cases by altering the test data values.

Challenges of using Google Drive for Test Automation

  • In order to avoid script-processing errors due to incorrect data-file format or content, Notepad or Microsoft Excel has to be used to create and maintain the data files.
  • While developing and executing automation test scripts, technical skills are required to refactor the test data sheet within the Automation framework.

Prerequisites for Integration

  • Java 1.7 or greater
  • Access to the internet and a web browser
  • A Google account with Google Drive enabled

Google Drive Configuration

    1. Login into your Gmail account like xx@gmail.com and navigate to the Access Link https://console.developers.google.com in other tab.
    2. Click on “Google API Console” under Developer Consoles section at bottom of the page or navigate to link – https://console.developers.google.com/apis/library
    3. Click on “Drive API” under Google Apps APIs section.

Google Apps APIs

    1. Create/Select a project in the Google Developers Console and enable the Google API. Click Continue, then Go to credentials.

Google API 4

    1. At the top of the page, select the OAuth consent screen tab. Select an Email address, enter a Product name if not already set, and click Save.

Image credentials - 5

6. Select the Credentials tab, click Create Credentials and select OAuth client ID.

selenium-image-6
7. Now to create Client Id, click on ‘Configure consent screen’.

selenium-7th
8. Select the application type other, enter the name “client Demo”, and click Create.

9. Now dialog will appear which shows your “OAuth Client Id and Client Secret”. Click OK to dismiss the resulting dialog.

selenium-9

10. Select the client name checkbox and click the file download (Download JSON) button to the right of the client ID.

selenium-10
11. Move the downloaded file to your working directory and rename it client_secret.json.

selenium-11

12. Now click on “Create credentials” drop down button and select “Service Account Key”.

selenium-12
13. Select “Service Account – Compute Engine default service account” and key type “P12”. Click Create.

14. Click Close to dismiss the resulting dialog.

selenium-14
15. Move the downloaded file – *.P12 to your working directory.

selenium-15

16. Open Google Drive from your Gmail account.

17. Create a new Google spreadsheet and save it as testSheet.

18. Click Share and share the spreadsheet with your Client Id (xxx-developer.gsserviceaccount.com) which you  created above.

19. Modify the Access Link setting – “Anyone with the link can edit”

20. Click Save.

Java Source Code for Integration

Here is a sample code in Java for accessing the Google Drive for any user. To use the same, first download the following jars or add maven dependencies.

Jar Files

code-1

 

code-2

code-3

code-4

code-5

code-6

 

code-7code-8code-9code-10code-11code-12code-13code-14

Conclusion

Google Drive is the most user-friendly storage option, where all test data can be loaded (For e.g. on Gmail, Google Docs, and spreadsheets), and accessed from all remote locations. Google provides both free and paid-for storage services. These provide multiple storage capacity options for your files and folders, where users can store backup local files and sync in files and folders across multiple computers.

It is recommended to utilize Google Drive services for Quality Assurance (QA) practices and further also integrate with Automation tools like Selenium.

Selenium is one of the most popular Automation testing suites. It is designed to test functional aspects of Web applications across a wide range of browsers and platforms. Considering it is an Open-Source platform, it is easy to integrate Google Drive with Selenium. Additionally, credentials of Google account can be shared with all authorized team members for effective execution of tests on the Cloud.

Ashish Jain technical lead at Gallop SolutionsAbout the Author: Ashish Jain, Technical Lead at Gallop Solutions, brings with him rich experience in the field of automation for web and mobile-based applications. He has extensive expertise in both functional as well as performance automation. He also holds expertise across various automation tools and technologies and has been involved in designing Testing solutions for various clients in Energy Utilities, Donation and fitness-based domains.
The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.

Can Test Automation really help build sound Embedded Devices?

can-test-automation-really-help-build-sound-embedded-devices

 

Tech portals are exploding with stories about Samsung Note7’s recall and exchange programs, which has led to Samsung’s stock plunging with losses as much as $14.3 billion. The Korean electronics giant is now officially in talks and has already started working with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) for the recall and has recommended Note7 owners to switch off their devices and stop charging them.

As the investigation of the phenomenal recall progresses, Samsung UK stated, “Based on our investigation, we learned that there was an issue with the battery cell. An overheating of the battery cell occurred when the anode-to-cathode came into contact which is a very rare manufacturing process error.”

The disruptions caused by this disaster have been startling. For the records, a person’s Jeep reportedly got destroyed after Note7 explosion, while a 6 year old got severely injured. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a strict warning to the airlines about the device.

New devices and gadgets are enthusing consumers every hour. If not literally speaking, a consumer can witness a new gadget launch every millisecond. Who can imagine that the new consumer friendly gadget lying in your Jeep or near your pillow could be lethal?

Maybe not just in sync, but a disaster like this amplifies the urgency of testing Embedded devices for robust framework and ultimately a market-ready product. When the competition is biting in and performance is everything, devising the best testing strategy seems to be the only way out!

What are Embedded Devices and where do we find them?

Embedded device is generally part of a system that serves a higher purpose. It is a specialized device meant to fit into one or specific few systems. Embedded devices or systems hold tremendous relevance and applications across various domains, namely, commercial, consumer, industrial, health-care, automotive, defence, and many more.

Embedded devices or systems can be found across product segments. It can be part of a heart rate monitor implanted within a wristwatch, which can be connected to a smartphone to display your heart’s health and in emergency situations alert your nearest contact with a call or message. A fitness band on your wrist that tracks your body movements and calories burned for a detailed health record.

While these were instances of some everyday examples, where they help connect human and machine behaviour, embedded systems implanted within home and kitchen appliances can communicate between each other. For instance, the refrigerator can notify the users that there is no milk or the vegetables are getting over. Specifically, Embedded systems make consumer devices smarter.

Nonetheless, its application as mentioned earlier cannot be confined to a particular domain. Embedded systems are designed particularly with some specific functionalities. They can be found in any/every device, right from smart cars, pacemakers, artificially intelligent drones, to the avionics in current day fighter jets/airplanes.

Testing Automation, not just for experience…for Excellence

With modern day smart devices dominating our everyday existence, testing these devices for a safe and sound interface is more than critical. Cars are being designed every second hour to get smarter and expectantly better. What if there is a software glitch and in midst of a stormy drive, the sensors stop and the system is unable to alert you about the tree log approaching your vehicle? Resulting in a sudden crash!

Embedded devices can be found in Avionic systems, Telecom, Logistics, Industrial, Medical, and many more Smart Devices. This shows the impact of testing Embedded devices to ensure excellence and seamless functionality.

Experts claim that the core concepts around automated testing for Embedded system is almost in line with its application for any other software. The specifics may vary from application to application or across platforms, but the underlying principles remain in line. At least, not radically different. Developers/Testers are known to look for patterns that can enable both while Coding and Testing, respectively. A similar pattern can be found while testing Embedded systems. How do you identify these patterns, is a puzzle that Test Automation solves.

Though Test Automation for embedded systems is broadly similar to many other applications, it is influenced by issues that are impacting the embedded world. To cite a few:

  • No specific design for testing
  • Resource and time constraints
  • A range of deployment architectures
  • Indefinite perspectives on implementation
  • Still evolving quality & certification parameters/standards
  • Access to execution platforms and multiple environments
  • Gap between the application development and actual execution platform

Implementing Test Automation can work wonders in accelerating the overall process. It can help improve the development process, which can be a task in the initial phase. It proves to be an absolute pay-off in the long run. It can be executed faster and in a recurring manner, which turns out to be cost-effective for products where performance has to be checked under various situations.

Specifically, in an Agile environment it helps to keep going back and repeating the tests to ensure functionality. It further helps in enhancing the test coverage.

While testing Embedded systems, the consistency of the behaviour/outcome needs to be tested. Automating the tests, brings efficiency and helps get results consistently with repeated tests. Test automation provides a reliable platform for your testing needs.

Simulating a particular user environment can be downright helpful in testing Embedded devices. Though its benefits are yet to be established, executing automated tests under an emulated environment can help derive close to reliable results of the system’s functioning. Repeated tests can be executed in a particular set-up to get results and confirm the system’s functional aspects and performance.

Test Automation helps you attain quality and at the same time helps you get your product faster to the market. The need to be there before the consumer asks, is every brand’s dream, but at the cost of compromising quality, security, safety?

iPhone7 has just stepped out of its cradle, but the market is already buzzing with rumours around iPhone8. That’s the pressing need of the hour!

Gallop’s test automation strategy enables enterprises to increase release velocity, reduce time to market and reduce overall testing effort resulting in significant return on investment (ROI). Connect with our experts to leverage the Automation Center of Excellence (ACoE) backed by a decade of experience in executing test automation engagements for global clients & a large pool of test automation experts.

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

The opinions expressed in this blog are author's and don't necessarily represent Gallop's positions, strategies or opinions.