For all our metrics, test plans, Agile approaches and strict industry standards, the end goal of every software development project is the same: happy customers. The user experience is our definition of success.
The designing, planning, testing and re-development that goes into an application is all there to make sure that the end user can solve their problem using our product. The challenge is to keep this goal in mind every step along the SDLC. The temptation is to embrace speed to reach a deadline or to limit testing in order to reduce the budget impact, but these decisions all have user-experience consequences.
Instead, we need to embrace the high-level benefits we gain by executing best practice standards in all we do. This is especially true for the test data management tools that define the quality of our test environment.
The Benefits of Test Data Management Tools
The test management tools we implement go a long way to increasing the success of our QA and, ultimately, the usability of our product. Investing in the right product is like taking out reputation insurance; it allows us to complete comprehensive and effective testing faster and with better use of our resources. The right solution has to comprehensively explore and validate the test data, ensure its readiness for reusability and help speed up the QA process by maximizing automation.
The list of potential benefits includes:
- Cost reduction
- Increased delivery speed
- Risk and liability mitigation
- Increased compliance and regulation adherence
All these factors feed back into the user experience by maximizing the use of our resources and making sure our final product will meet and exceed industry and user expectations.
The importance of the technology is reflected in the popularity and diversity of test data managemen tools currently available.
Selecting the Right Test Data Management Tool
As with any facet of the SDLC, you should always bring an agnostic approach to test data management tool selection. There is enough variety in the available options to carefully match your unique application and resource needs to a product, rather than trying to shoehorn in a “most popular” solution.
We have outlined a few of the leading options below to get you started on your data management tool search.
This is a web and mobile testing suite that uses AI to generate scriptless automation regression tests. The major benefit is speed, as you can write tests in plain English and have them converted by the software, reducing test creation time and making maintenance easier.
Another scriptless, AI-powered web tool that promises time savings by making the operation as user friendly as possible. It is used by some big names, including Sony and Cisco, and aims to free up your human resources by limiting their time spent creating test scripts.
A mobile testing tool that again uses machine learning to smooth the test script creation process, this time within the Appium and Selenium frameworks. Popular with UI automation.
A cross-platform tool that works on web, mobile and embedded, it is among the most popular choices for automated GUI regression testing.
A UI specialist that works across platforms and browsers, this tool uses visual information to identify page elements. And it can be integrated with cloud-based tools such as Selenium.
Each of these solutions is designed to reduce the human toll of repetitive regression testing, and to make automation more accessible—which leads to the question:
What Can You Automate with Test Data Management Tools?
Test data automation is dedicated to streamlining the process of designing, storing and managing the source codes for testing. In short, this is anything that has to do with the preparation and execution of automated tests, which extends to:
- Data generation
- Data masking
- Data scrambling
- Data refreshing
As it gives you complete control over all the files in use and the rules that govern their use and as it dictates report generation—test data automation defines your testing environment. Selecting the right tool for your SDLC is therefore pivotal to your QA success. And to top it off, there is a new emphasis on making the process user friendly enough to involve more project stakeholders who can easily operate the system.
However, as with any facet of QA, you get your best results when the test data management tool is in the hands of a dedicated expert.
Outsourcing to an Expert Set of Eyes
Sometimes you can know your product too well. The core team that takes your application from design through to launch can be clouded in the way they evaluate the user experience. Instead of an objective view, their test efforts can be impaired by what they know the application is designed to achieve.
Outsourcing your QA exposes your product to fresh attention from an expert. With the flexibility that comes from understanding all the latest test data management tools and trends, a QA partner should be able to design and implement a system that maximizes data integrity and scrutiny while also keeping the end user in mind at all times.
In addition to reducing costs and increasing the speed of delivery, a QA partner pushes your product to its extremes in the pursuit of the perfect user experience.
QASource’s team of more than 700 engineers have partnered with some of the world’s leading companies to deliver products that compete within the most competitive markets in application development. Our team takes an agnostic approach to each project that means we use our industry knowledge to match your application with the best possible test data management tools. Let our QA experts guide you through all test tool options with a free quote, or call +1.925.271.5555 today.