Speaker Photo
Aaron Cook


Evolution: Test Automation to Continuous Testing

Test automation has taken on a negative connotation over the last few years, specifically in organizations that continue to silo the automation team into a separate group. These folks have the unenviable task of "taking the latest build" and developing test scripts for it. These scripts need to be manually executed, groomed for feature drift, and maintained like any other component of code. This is often one of the last things that occurs in a release or worse yet, "one-sprint-behind", so that automation is never current. This is a recipe for frustration and constant release challenges.

Continuous Testing (CT), in concert with Continuous Integration and Continuous Development (CI / CD) introduces the concept of test automation code, treated as code, embedded within the feature code, managed and maintained with each PR, and executed in a continuous fashion via Jenkins or another build tool. This ensures code coverage increases as your code coverage metrics trend, build over build. This ensures that your test code is always up-to-date with the feature repo, since they are developed hand-in-hand. This removes the stigma that test automation "takes too long" and is an expensive impediment to release, and creates the success patterns for safe, continuous release of your software, at the speed that the business can consume it.

This talk will explain the evolution of test automation, from the early days of silo-d teams the power of a fully integrated team leveraging both software developers and software developers in test (SDET).

About Aaron Cook

Aaron has devoted his career to the successful release of quality software. This has variously taken the form of Sr. Director of QA for a large consulting practice in Boston, to start up product companies, to his current gig, working with exceptionally smart people, developing the next generation of the software development lifecycle (SDLC). Test automation has always been a factor in this journey, striving to deliver better quality software, faster, more reliably and predictably, enabling various business to consume those changes at their speed.

Aaron has spoken and presented technical classes on quality, test automation frameworks, and overall test management best practices at Segue (Borland / Microfocus) user conferences, Software Test and Performance Conferences (STPCon East and West), Software Test Analysis and Review (STAREAST) as well as STPCon Magazine, published in 2008 and 2009.