In this fast-paced software technology era, new software applications are developed frequently. And even faster new features must be added to the developed software application. To add new features code needs to be updated. And for all these software developers and testers have very limited time. Here test automation plays an important role.
Automation testing is a software testing technique that requires very limited human interference. Using it a software development team can save an ample amount of time. They can even ensure the accuracy, correct functioning, and quality of the software application. But this is not enough.
To develop a software application that is effective and provides the best user experience, you need to communicate with the stakeholders. Stakeholders include everyone related to the software applications such as the developers, testers, managers, and most importantly, the client. The client specifies what is required in the software application, which is what features it should have.
Communication with stakeholders before developing software applications ensures every perspective and expectation of the software applications are well defined. Thus an open-source test automation tool, Robot Framework has been introduced. This framework allows the stakeholders of the software applications to communicate. Here the communication is clear, consistent, and concise.
Let us now get into the main focus, which is how Robot Framework can communicate with the stakeholders while performing automation testing.
What is Robot Framework?
The robot framework is an open-source automation tool. It is highly in demand in the software technology domain due to its test automation and robotic process automation capabilities. Today, it is used by many top-notch companies as it plays a significant role in the development of software applications. The Robot framework foundation is the back of the robot framework.
The robot framework gained popularity due to its capability. And we know test automation simply means the automatic testing of the software application with minimal human interruption. But what does Robotic process automation mean? Robotic Process Automation abbreviated as RPA is a method that uses user interfaces and APIs to automate routine tasks and processes. It helps in performing various actions in the exact way a human would do.
The robot framework is often integrated with other tools to provide a flexible and powerful solution for automation. It is easy to use due to its syntax consisting of human-readable keywords. You can even extend its capability by implementing various programming languages such as Python or Java libraries.
Importance of Communication between Stakeholders
Development of a software application requires insights from its stakeholders and thus communication plays a vital role in the automation testing of a software application.
Here are various reasons why effective communication is essential.
Alignment with Business Goals
Software applications are developed to fulfill the specified needs of those using them. Thus it is essential to communicate with the client such as the product manager to understand the objective of the software application. This will then ensure all the required functionality is added to the software application. The goal will also help test automation tools to design cases covering all the critical functionalities.
Automation testing involves minimal human interruption and therefore it is required to provide it with requirement clarification. An explicit requirement clarification received from communication with the stakeholders will allow test automation tools to create compelling test cases that involve the testing of all the features associated with the software application.
Continuous Feedback and Improvement
When a software application is developed, it may have various issues. However effective communication with the stakeholders can help overcome them. In automation testing, communication will provide continuous feedback on the software application’s functionality and quality, which can further be improved by updating the test cases.
Communication with stakeholders can help overcome the risk associated with automation testing. The stakeholders can identify critical and complex functionalities and prioritize them so that test automation tools can pay more attention to them. This helps in the development of a quality and bug-free software application.
How Robot Framework Will Communicate with the Stakeholders
Now since the Robot Framework is an automation tool, you may wonder how it will communicate with the stakeholders. Here is a list of ways of Robot Framework communicating with the stakeholders.
The robot framework uses a keyword-driven approach. The test cases are written using keywords that both technical and non-technical stakeholders can easily understand. Thus making it easy for them to communicate. The stakeholders can also use the keyword to add or modify test cases easily. The keywords such as click button are self-explanatory allowing stakeholders to share with automated tools effortlessly during automation testing.
Plain-Text Test Cases
The stakeholder includes people from both technical and non-technical domains. And non-technical people cannot understand specialized keywords. To solve this problem and for easy communication between automated tools and stakeholders in automation testing, Robot Framework uses plain-text test cases. These are written in simple English which anyone can understand. Also, working with Robot Framework requires no prior technical knowledge of developing and testing.
Robot Framework allows communication with stakeholders in automation testing through reports. The reports are generated with every minute detail about the test case execution. It has its fail/pass status along with the logs. The stakeholders then analyze these reports to know about the testing progress and the quality of the software application. The pieces are also used to make changes in the software application or any related decision.
Robot Framework lets you customize test reports according to your requirements. Stakeholders include various individuals involved in the software development process, and everyone does not require the entire test report. Different individuals need different information relevant to them. For example, you may customize a test report that consists of all the failed test cases or a message consisting of test cases related to a particular feature.
Integration with Continuous Integration(CI) Tools
The stakeholders can also communicate in automating testing by integrating Robot Framework and the CI/CD tools. The popular tools seamlessly integrating with the Robot Framework are Jerkins, Travis CI, CircleCI, and many more. These tools allow Robot Framework to detect issues early, find bugs, and debug them simultaneously. The Robot Framework also automatically notified stakeholders about the test execution along with its pass/fail status.
Test Case Tagging And Documentation
The Robot Framework is a suitable means of communication with stakeholders in automated testing. This is due to its feature that allows it to tag and document test cases. Tagging of test cases means adding specific texts to the test cases that help specify the objective of test cases. Documentation of a test case involves adding details related to the test cases that summarize the different components of the test case. This can be understood as adding metadata to the test case script. Metadata helps stakeholders understand the context of various test cases easily.
Best Practices for Stakeholder Communication with Robot Framework
In automated testing, communication with stakeholders using Robot Framework can be enhanced using the following best practices.
You must regularly update your stakeholders through Robot Framework regarding the status of automated testing. After the execution of every test case, reports and results including the test status must be shared to keep them notified about the development of the software application.
Although Robot Framework is easier to use, you must provide basic knowledge about it to the stakeholders. This will help the stakeholders who are unaware of the automation process. Also, this will empower them to contribute effectively to software development.
A continuous interaction must be done with the stakeholders. This will help acquire their feedback regarding test cases and the testing process. Later this feedback can be used to improve the automation testing process.
Every stakeholder is skilled and proficient in different domains; thus, their roles must be divided accordingly. This will ensure everyone contributes efficiently and is well aware of their responsibility.
Communication is essential
Thus, you must use tools to help various stakeholders communicate and make productive decisions. To collaborate you can use chat platforms and issue trackers where every stakeholder can keep their opinions.
You can even integrate the Robot framework with the cloud platform. This will help in sharing the test documentation without reaching out to each stakeholder individually. Also, any changes to be made to the document can be done on the cloud without the requirement of sharing it on a loop.
You can further elevate your testing experience by integrating cloud testing platforms like LambdaTest into your Robot Framework workflows.
LambdaTest is an AI-powered test orchestration and execution platform to run manual and automated tests at scale. The platform allows you to perform both real-time and automation testing across 3000+ environments and real device cloud.
Communication is an essential part of software development. And when it comes to automated testing, it becomes even more important to communicate. This is because automation testing does not involve human interference. Humans need to provide it with instruction. Thus, accurate education is required, and this can be achieved by communication.
The Robot Framework is a popular framework used to communicate with stakeholders in automation testing due to its simple keyword-driven syntax. It can be easily understood by both technical and non-technical stakeholders. The above-mentioned ways for communicating with stakeholders and the best practices will help in effective communication. Further, this communication will help leverage the software application’s quality and correctness.