Improving with Metrics

Metrics can aid in improving your organization’s automated testing process and tracking its status.  It was once stated:

“When you can measure what you are speaking about, and can express it in numbers, you know something about it; but when you cannot measure it, when you cannot express it in numbers, your knowledge is of a meager and unsatisfactory kind.”

— Lord Kelvin, a physicist

If you can measure something, then you have something you can quantify.  If you can quantify something, then you can explain it in more detail and know more about it.  If you can explain it, then you have a better chance to attempt to improve upon it, and so on.

Utilizing your Metrics

Software projects are becoming more complex due to increased lines of code, added features, bug fixes, etc.  Programmers are asked to do more in less time with fewer people. Over time, these compounding pressures will have a tendency to decrease the test coverage and ultimately affect the quality of the product.  Other factors involved over time are the overall cost of the product and the time to deliver the software.  Metrics can provide insight into the status of automated testing efforts.

When done properly, implementing automation software testing will reverse the negative trend.  Automation efforts can provide a larger test coverage area and increase the overall quality of the product.  Automation can also reduce the time of testing and the cost of delivery. This benefit is typically realized over multiple test cycles and project cycles.  Automated testing metrics can aid in making assessments as to whether progress, productivity and quality goals are being met.

In this and upcoming blogs on this topic, I hope to cover several aspects of Automated Software Testing metrics. Read more here.