Off late, there has been considerable interest in functional testing amongst enterprise technology leaders. From increased investment in testing resources to leveraging automation platforms for better coverage, this testing draws attention for several reasons.
If you are wondering why here is a possible answer. We are witnessing a rapid shift of consumer activity to digital channels. As a result, the corporate boardrooms are filled with discussions about building the most reliable digital applications to serve customers in any scenario.
When it comes to reliability, quality assurance plays a pivotal role. While all forms of testing are important, there is increased patronage for functional testing as it does test activities on areas closer to the actual experience of application use for the end users.
What Is Functional Testing?
For starters, functional testing deals with all forms of testing wherein a software or a feature within the software is tested to verify its adherence to the functional requirements laid out initially. Internal system or business logic that happens within the software or the component receives no importance.
The predetermined list of output or functional requirements is listed in the software’s feasibility and planning stages in consultation with all stakeholders. The QA engineers proceed to verify whether the software or a feature meets each of the listed requirements after a development cycle. Even though the internal logic is spared from validation during the functional testing phase, all aspects of the functional requirement are tested end-to-end.
For example, let us consider a ticketing application for movies and subject the login workflow to functional testing. The desired requirement listed would be checking for correct login credentials. Upon successful validation, the logged-in user can book tickets or customize their booking. Functional testing spares the details on how the login process works internally. However, all aspects of the login process are validated, such as:
- The scenarios when a user enters incorrect credentials
- The response of the system when a user enters the lower number of characters in respective fields, etc.
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What Are the Different Types of Functional Testing?
Today, test engineers encounter a diverse range of complex scenarios and events triggered by new forms of application infrastructure, architecture, and deployment characteristics. Therefore, newer and evolved forms of testing and QA operations have become prevalent in accordance with the needs of application use cases.
Some examples include cloud testing, vendor-focused testing capabilities like ServiceNow testing, and much more. Functional testing is not immune to this diversity. Different applications have varying degrees of functional specifications that have their own set of validation requirements. To that end, let us explore the most popular types of functional testing that are prevalent today:
A type of testing often taken up by developers who create scripts that check whether each functional unit of the application conforms to their specific requirements or purpose of creation.
Smoke and Sanity Testing
In smoke testing, every build released is tested to ensure that the live application doesn't exhibit any problems. Sanity testing often follows in the footsteps of smoke testing, wherein QA engineers verify whether all features of the entire application work well after each release - individually and collaboratively.
Regression testing checks every new addition to the codebase for impact on existing functionality and process workflows.
Integration testing assures the end-to-end working of an application when multiple functional modules are built separately and then integrated to form a large application.
Usability testing involves testing the actual usage patterns of customers of the software. Representatives from a sample customer base often take this up. This gives more credibility to the testing process and helps integrate accurate market feedback into future releases.
Why Is Functional Testing Important?
Across industries, the growth of digital channels is far surpassing those achieved by traditional physical customer interaction avenues. Take, for example, the retail sector. A recent study by Morgan Stanley found that nearly 21% of all retail sales happened through e-commerce. By 2026, the study also expects total e-commerce sales to surpass USD 5.4 trillion globally.
With consumers relying more on software applications, the need to ensure that the software meets its purpose is more critical than ever before. Therefore, the spotlight falls on this testing.
An app may have all its internal technology and coding architecture well sorted out and pass non-functional testing initiatives with flying colors. However, if it doesn't meet the standards for functional testing, it can severely undermine the business prospects of the application in the market.
How To Make Functional Testing More Efficient?
We have seen how different types of testing empower QA teams and the development teams to ensure better functional compliance for an application with regard to its main requirements and purpose.
However, extracting the true ROI from functional testing initiatives requires a more strategic approach. This approach must incorporate a fully planned roadmap and integrate automation testing as appropriate into the roadmap.
Achieving even moderate success with functional testing will take a tremendous amount of time in the absence of automation. Only enterprises that encourage a culture of end-to-end test automation will find it easier to strategically execute their functional testing roadmap. In essence, they'll be able to launch applications or features faster and defect-free into the market.
Make Functional Testing Effective
We have seen how functional testing is one of the most sought-after testing approaches in the modern-day enterprise technology landscape. It cannot be overlooked or ignored, even for the smallest of features, as the price to pay for lapses can be huge.
To extract the best results from functional testing in the fastest time, enabling automated test activities is the key. This is where ACCELQ can help bring a transformative change in your testing strategy.
Contact us for a demo of how our end-to-end test automation platform can enable faster testing and improve your application quality significantly.