Everything You Need To Know About Test Automation Frameworks


What is the Testing Framework?

Before falling into the most widespread categories of frameworks and their benefits, let’s analyze what a test automation framework is. A testing framework is a set of approaches or rules used for building and formulating test cases. A framework comprises a combination of methods and tools that are constructed to help QA professionals test more efficiently.

These guidelines could involve coding standards, object repositories, processes for storing test results, test-data handling methods, or data on how to access external resources. While these are not necessary rules and testers can yet script or record tests without following them, using a systematic framework typically delivers additional advantages that would otherwise be missed out on.

Test automation frameworks are a necessary part of any profitable automated testing process. They can decrease maintenance costs and testing efforts and will give an increased return on investment (ROI) for QA teams looking to optimize their agile processes.

The automation testing services comprise the execution of a vast set of testing and around-testing elements, from test automation planning and tool choice to the formation and maintenance of a test automation environment, design, and maintenance of all types of automated test scripts, and implementation of automated test information practice, etc. 

The objective of this article is to walk through the test automation frameworks, automation testing services, what is testing framework, automation framework, and automated testing tools for web applications. For QA specialists new to automated testing, or those who want a quick refresher, this blog will furnish a high-level overview of every type of framework. So let’s look at its benefits now.

Benefits of Test Automation Frameworks

Using a framework for automated testing will enhance a team’s test speed and efficiency, expand test accuracy, and will decrease test maintenance costs as well as lower dangers.

test automation frameworks

They are important to a productive automated testing process for some key reasons:  

  1. Enhanced test efficiency
  2. Lower maintenance costs
  3. Minimal manual intervention
  4. Maximum test coverage
  5. Reusability of code

A popular trend to minimize risk is to test first in the Test Automation Frameworks. You can test in your IDE by utilizing tools such as TestLeft. You can install a free 30-day trial to Automate in your IDE today!

Types of Automated Testing Frameworks

There are six popular types of test automation frameworks, each with their architecture and varying benefits and drawbacks. When building out a test plan, it’s significant to select the framework that is perfect for you.

  1. Linear Automation Framework
  2. Modular Based Testing Framework
  3. Library Architecture Testing Framework
  4. Data-Driven Framework
  5. Keyword-Driven Framework
  6. Hybrid Testing Framework

Linear Automation Framework

With a linear test automation framework, also known as a record-and-playback framework. Testers do not require to write code to build processes and the steps are written in sequential order. In this method, the tester documents each step such as user input, navigation, or checkpoints, and then plays the script back automatically to perform the test.

Advantages:

  1. There is no need to write custom code, so creativity in test automation is not essential.
  2. This is also the easiest way to get up and operating with automated testing, particularly with a new tool. 

Disadvantages:

  1. The scripts created using this framework are not reusable.
  2. Maintenance is considered a hassle because any changes to the application will need a lot of rework. This model is not especially scalable as the scope of testing expands.
Top 5 Advantages and disadvantages of test automation frameworks

Modular Based Testing Framework

Enforcing a modular framework will need testers to allocate the application under test into distinct units, functions, or sections, each of which will be tested in isolation. After cracking the application into single modules, a test script is built for each part and then incorporated to build larger tests hierarchically. These bigger sets of tests will start to illustrate various test cases.

A key technique in using the modular framework is to create an abstraction layer so that any modifications created in individual sections won’t affect the overarching module.

Advantages:

  1. If any changes are made to the application, only the module and its related individual test script will require to be fixed.
  2. Building test cases takes smaller effort because test scripts for different modules can be reused.

Disadvantages:

  1. Information is still hard-coded into the test script since the tests are implemented separately, so you can’t use multiple data sets.
  2. Programming knowledge is needed to set up the framework.

Library Architecture Testing Framework

The library architecture framework for automated testing is established on the modular framework. However, it has some additional advantages. Instead of splitting the application under test into the several scripts that require it to be run, similar assignments within the scripts are recognized and later grouped by purpose, so the application is eventually broken down by common motives. These processes are kept in a library which can be called upon by the test scripts whenever required.

Advantages:

  1. It is similar to the modular framework, operating this architecture will direct to a high level of modularization, which makes test maintenance and scalability easier and more cost-effective.
  2. This framework has a greater degree of reusability because there is a library of popular functions that can be utilized by multiple test scripts.

Disadvantages:

  1. Test data is still difficult coded into the script. Hence, any changes to the data will need changes to the scripts.
  2. Technical expertise is required to write and analyze the common functions within the test scripts.
  3. Test scripts take more time to improve.

Data-Driven Framework

Using a data-driven framework segregates the test data from script logic, defining testers can save data externally. Very often, testers find themselves in a situation where they are required to test the same function of an application multiple times with varied sets of data. In these examples, it’s significant that the test data not be hard-coded in the script itself, which is what occurs with a Linear or Modular-based testing framework.

The test scripts are attached to the external data source and instructed to read and populate the crucial data when wanted.

Advantages:

  1. Tests can be enforced with multiple data sets.
  2. Multiple scenarios can be tested rapidly by varying the data, thereby reducing the number of scripts needed.
  3. Hard-coding data can be prevented so any changes to the test scripts do not affect the data being used and vice versa.
  4. You’ll save time by enforcing more tests faster.

Disadvantages:

  1. You’ll require a highly-experienced tester who is skilled in many programming languages to properly use this framework design. They will need to recognize and format the external data sources and to write code (build functions) that connect the tests to those external data sources seamlessly.

Keyword-Driven Framework

In a keyword-driven framework, each function of the application under test is laid out in a table with a series of instructions in continuous order for each test that requires to be run. In an identical fashion to the data-driven framework, the test data and script logic are segregated in a keyword-driven framework, but this strategy takes it a step further.

test automation frameworks

With this method, keywords are also stored in an exterior data table (hence the name), creating them independent from the automated testing tool being utilized to enforce the tests. Keywords are the fraction of a script depicting the many actions being accomplished to test the GUI of an application. These can be named as simply as ‘click,’ or ‘login,’ or with problematic labels like ‘click link,’ or ‘verify link.’

Advantages:

  1. Minimal scripting knowledge is required.
  2. A single keyword can be utilized across multiple test scripts, so the code is reusable.
  3. Test scripts can be created independently of the application under test.

Disadvantages:

  1. The first cost of setting up the framework is high. It is time-consuming and problematic. The keywords require to be defined and the object repositories/libraries need to be set up.
  2. You need an employee with good automation testing skills.
  3. Keywords can be a conflict to maintain when scaling a test operation. You will need to continue building out the repositories and keyword tables.

Hybrid Test Automation Framework

As with most testing processes today, automated testing frameworks have begun to become integrated and overlap with one another. As the name implies, a hybrid framework is a collection of any of the recently mentioned frameworks set up to leverage the benefits of some and mitigate the weaknesses of others.

Every application is different, and so should the methods used to test them. As more teams move to an agile model, setting up a flexible framework for automated testing is significant. A hybrid framework can be more effortlessly adapted to get the best test outcomes.

One suggested approach for executing a hybrid framework for automated testing is to discover a tool that can rapidly and easily adapt to your methods. When selecting an automated testing tool, you should watch for one that is adaptable and can benefit a wide range of applications and languages.

This will facilitate your team, regardless of background and skill set, to contribute to your testing efforts. TestComplete, our automated testing tools for web applications that allows QA teams to build and run UI and functional tests across mobile, provides a comprehensive environment for building, desktop and web applications, and maintaining automated testing projects.

TestComplete supports a vast variety of scripting languages, such as JavaScript, Python, Java, and VBScript, and comes with a substantial object library that has over fifty thousand object properties and extra than five hundred control kinds. The tool’s record-and-playback element facilitates non-programmers to build complex tests without writing a single line of code. With these characteristics, any team can effortlessly build hybrid  test automation frameworks that TestComplete supports and will enable teams to execute a myriad of testing types, including data-driven testing and keyword-driven testing.