When executing regression tests solely manually, this can surpass the effort of programming quickly when there are lots of changings and time spent for the testing of existing functionalities for quality assurance.
Besides unit tests by the developers and brief manual tests, test automation offers the following advantages (For testers and the whole project):
The initial effort is different, this means that the time spent for automating tests is usually greater than doing manual tests. With test automation (e.g. with QF-Test) after the third test cycle a positive balance can be reached already concerning test expenses. The individually reached ROI can vary of course.
In agile software development the ROI is reached faster due to shorter iteration cycles (daily at best) than in classical development and QA approaches.
"One hour of manual testing is automated in 1,5 to 2 hours.", says Ralph van Roosmalen, QA Manager, Planon, Netherlands.
Due to the consecutive development cycles more and more functionalities must be tested. The increasing test effort can just be handled with test automation.
Agile software development has lots of iterations and that's the reason why test automation is a necessity - in addition to unit tests.
|Time before automation||Time after automation||Citation|
|8 weeks||1 week||Sean Kane, Manager of Test Engineering, Intervoice Inc., Dallas, USA:|
But now we can regression test the application in 1 week. It used to take 8 weeks.
|2 weeks||5 days||Gadi Goldbarg, Development Tools, QA Team Leader, Zend, Ramat Gan, Israel:|
The usage of QF-Test has reduced my test cycle from 2 weeks (plus/minus) to 5 days (since not all is automated yet).
|1 day||3 hours||Denis Gauthier Software Integration, Thales Australia, Melbourne:|
Regarding the time saving aspect, it usually took me a full day to perform the Non-Regression Tests. It has now been reduced to three hours. (see complete case study).
|1 day||less than 1 hour||Phil Cross, Lockheed Martin, Owego New York, USA:|
Regression testing of our Java application that previously took a full day to execute is now done in less than an hour with QF-Test.
|7-8 hours||1,5 hours||Heidi Klade, Logistik Pur Software GmbH, Koppl near Salzburg, Austria:|
Our tests run for about 90 minutes. I suppose that a manual test run would last about 7-8 hours of concentrated work.
|Reduction of almost 50%||CertiCon, Prague, Czech Republic:|
In a matter of months we succeeded in reducing the test processing time by almost 50%, adding hundreds of additional test cases. (see complete case study).
You can find the complete citations here: Advantages for decision-makers
The three pink phases of the test process (see image on the left) Test case development, test case execution and maintenance of test cases influence the return on investment (ROI) during the automation of tests the most.