To build or not to build own test automation framework?

To build or not to build own test automation framework?
May 08 08:03 2018 Print This Article

If you decide to apply test automation, two options are available – to develop your own framework or to use the ready one. Wrong decision may screw up the whole project. The matter is that there is no universal principle that clearly shows when you need to build your own automation solution instead of buying it.

First of all, test automation framework is a tool that helps you to gain better results requiring less time and effort. Automation tools help to prepare, execute and analyze automated scripts. They make your code more readable and reusable. In the market, there is a huge variety of ready automation frameworks, tools and platforms both commercial and open-source. To select a proper test automation tool, you can read the whitepaper conducted by QATestLab. It includes the analysis of most popular tools in 2017 – 2018.

However, it is not so easy to find a ready tool that will fulfill all the required tasks and meet your requirements. And it is even more complicated to adjust a ready solution to your particular project.

Why to build own automation solution?

The biggest plus of developing your own automation framework is full control and independency. You will be able to add newly required features and remove unnecessary ones. You can adjust your framework directly to the needs of your project. Also, you are always sure that your solution satisfies specific and uncommon needs in comparison to ready frameworks that usually cover only average requirements.

But developing own automation tool, you should consider several key aspects:

  • fast creation of automated scripts
  • convenient and clear logging and reporting functionality
  • flexibility and easy maintainability
  • fast learning

Developing own solution for test automation, you will definitely face three core pitfalls. They are time, money and resources.

Drawbacks of building own solution

Development of own automation framework is not one-day activity. It requires much planning, analysis and development. At planning stage, you can enumerate the requirements needed for your future project. But that they should be real must-haves, not just nice-to-have requirements. Probably, after such an analysis you will find out that a solution you require is already available in the market. Beside that, some commercial tools have a free trial period that helps to make sure that the solution suits your project.

If building own solution for test automation, you should have skilled and experienced specialists who will be able to develop such a tool. Also, you should provide your team with all necessary equipment to develop a framework. It requires investments. Are you sure spent time and money worth profit? Is your project really so complex and large that it requires dedicated automation solution?

One more case you should consider. What if the head of your team that was engaged in development of a framework decided to leave the company? What will you do then? You can watch the webinar to know more pros and cons of building and developing automation framework.

When to build own framework?

  • too complex project with specific features
  • project with high scalability
  • no suitable solution in the market
  • skilled team available
  • available budget

So, you can build automation solution if you have very specific and complex project the further development of which is planned, enough budget is allocated, and you have skilled specialists.

Or you can use a ready automation tool either commercial or open-source one if your project is not too specific, you have limited budget, tight timeframes and you have a QA team of non-technical specialists.

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Ivanna Kyryk
Ivanna Kyryk

has 5 years experience in management, experience in testing, marketing, sales, business development, manages 15+ active projects, leads team of more than 20 members.

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