Axelerant is a leading, global provider of services to fuel digital disruption and transformation. With over 100 experts in house, they are a leader in the Drupal ecosystem. They offer a wide variety of technical services to their clients, including front end, AI, DevOps, and now QA offerings. Their client list is a who’s who of enterprises, including some of the world’s largest e-commerce, healthcare, and technology companies.
Axelerant supports a wide variety of customers with a variety of sites supporting distinct use cases. Primarily, customers are developing web applications, but they are often interacting with API’s and mobile applications as well. With an overwhelming demand from customers for their leading services, automating testing in a way that allows for reusability is key to their success.
For Axelerant’s customers, shifting towards automated testing is critical to getting fast, repeatable feedback on any changes to their application. In order to support one of their customers quickly and easily, Axelerant wanted to find a single automation solution which could work across Web, API, and Mobile applications. Furthermore, it was important to find a solution which could support users all across the spectrum of technical skills and training, as some of their current solutions like Selenium and Appium had too steep of a learning curve for non-technical team members.
Although Axelerant had a dedicated team of Software development engineers in test, their Quality assurance team was looking for codeless automation solutions to increase the efficiency of less technical team members and provide more value to the client in terms of faster feedback. Gaining skills on one testing tool didn’t necessarily translate into skills on the next toolset. Furthermore, it meant that enhancements and customizations made for one project likely couldn’t be reused on the next. Without a base of skills in a platform and reusable assets like addons, reports, etc., the onboarding process at each customer would simply take too much time.
Shweta Sharma, Director for QA Services at Axelerant, embarked on a journey to investigate tools that could solve the challenge of test automation on projects with limited technical team members. She began by selecting a shortlist of codeless automated testing tools to evaluate from the wealth of options on the market. Up for consideration was building a keyword-driven framework from popular open-source drivers like Selenium and Appium. Selenium IDE was investigated as a possible addition to allow for codeless test creation.
After evaluating the test automation requirements of several customers, Shweta assembled a comprehensive list of requirements for Axlerant’s new testing tool. Some of the main requirements highlighted in her research included:
- Easy to learn and adopt, even for those early on in the automation journey
- Ability to support Web applications, API’s, and even Mobile applications
- Support for testing on cloud devices, simulators, and emulators
- Easy to understand reports on testing, with ability to share via Slack and Email
- Robust support and documentation to allow for easy onboarding and troubleshooting
- Affordable, so the cost was feasible for each and every client engagement
With these features in mind, Shweta would be able to narrow down the list of tools to those which support Axelerant’s test automation strategy over the years to come.
Shweta kicked off a thorough search of tools on the market, leveraging her close connection and ties to the testing community over her 13+ years in the industry. She came across TestProject through her research, having seen the tool mentioned on Twitter as well as at the most recent Selenium Conference. When it eventually came down to a shortlist, the options considered were TestProject or building an in house framework from Selenium and Appium. After consideration, TestProject became the favorite, due to some key considerations:
- TestProject supports web as well as API’s and mobile in one interface (Android and iOS)
- TestProject provides an interface for those who wanted to script as well as those who lacked technical skills
- TestProject supports reusability out-of-the-box, with a page object model, addons, data-driven testing, and more
- TestProject offers integration to cloud device providers like BrowserStack when testing needs to be done on devices the customer does not own
- TestProject offers quick support via live chat as well as a thorough forum and documentation to ease onboarding
- TestProject is 100% free, including the platform, hosting, as well as live support
Now that the choice to implement TestProject had been made, Shweta was ready to embark on the process of implementing TestProject within Axelerant.
The process of getting TestProject up and running at Axelerant was relatively painless, with initial results coming quickly. Shweta assigned a junior mentee working on a small customer engagement to the platform first, to validate that it would work well for junior and experienced team members alike. With the ramp-up period only taking a matter of days, test scripts were being automated quickly. By the end of the first 2 weeks, 70% of tests for a small web application were automated. TestProject is now being targeted for implementation across a number of additional customers where technical skills are more limited and fast feedback is needed.
With TestProject fully deployed for all projects where the technical skills are limited, Shweta has been able to see tremendous improvements to her automated testing, including:
- Improvement in tester efficiency, with all users now able to contribute fully to automated test coverage, regardless of their experience in the field of test automation
- Reduction in onboarding time, with users fully enabled and contributing in two weeks or less, as compared to several months previously
- Increase in test coverage, with many clients now able to achieve 80%+ automation coverage on their applications
- Reduction in test framework maintenance, with less than 5% of time spent on it with TestProject
Overall, the benefits of TestProject have been instrumental in supporting the team’s efforts to get their clients’ applications tested quickly via automation.
Overall, Shweta would recommend TestProject to other organizations looking for a similar solution to tackle Web, API, and even Mobile automation. Her advice to ensure a smooth implementation is as follows:
- Codeless tools have evolved tremendously over the last 10 years. Don’t hesitate to consider them in your organization, they can be a huge benefit to teams with a wide variety of skill sets.
- Reuse is key. Make sure you are thinking about reuse at every turn, whether it is object identification, test step definition, test data creation, or even report generation.
- Focus on getting the tool working and adding value first, then look into how to customize the tool further to fit your needs. The Axelerant team is constantly improving their workflow with TestProject even today, but overcomplicating things too early can risk success.
- Speed is key – the faster the feedback to the development team, the better. TestProject supports executing tests headlessly, and also in parallel (especially using cloud device farms like BrowserStack). You won’t find a faster solution on the market!
- Don’t hesitate to reach out to TestProject support. Though the documentation and forum are very complete, the support team has been amazing! Especially when you have less experienced testers onboarding, the support team can help to fill in any gaps that may pop up.