One of the biggest challenges of test automation is to make sure your test automation process provides real value (reducing the execution time and delivering Quality applications or services). In other words, to add value to your customers.
There is a misconception that you can automatically write automated tests if you are skilled in coding. However, true automation is more than just a programming language. The skill of testing involves the ability to understand the input requirements of a system under test (SUT), the output requirements, and what it means for the automation engineer.
This article will explore:
What is low code automation?
In a nutshell, low code automation is one developer or QA Engineer using a testing tool or platform that minimizes the amount of code initially used in the test scripts that QA Engineers or developers have to write to produce the Test Automation. Most low code testing tools let engineers implement testing logic using point-and-click interfaces instead of writing test scripts code using other coded frameworks or testing tools.
Low code automation doesn’t always mean no code in many cases; low-code automation tools still require some traditional coding or configuration, although some no code tools claim to enable codeless automation.
There are two main reasons why companies choose low code testing tools.
- One is to allow QA Engineers with minimal coding skills to create test scripts efficiently (For low code automation, some fundamental coding skills are necessary).
- The other is to save time for experienced Engineers by letting them build Test Automations suites quickly, using prebuilt functions and components instead of writing out all the test scripts.
What is no code automation?
Codeless or No code automation tools are the same thing. However, these tools facilitate UI testing with functionality that doesn’t require engineers to code any test script. Many no code automation tools utilize the record and playback paradigm, but others include model-based Tests, visual programming, and visual design trees. The engineers record a scenario and then edit the test script in an editor to complete the test. Then, they execute the test, troubleshoot any errors, and make additional changes until the test performs as intended.
No code automation tools often argue that no coding skills are required to use them. Certainly, non-coders team members can perform many essential functions with no code automation tools like recording a business-user flow and configuring assertions. However, many no code automation tools lack the advanced functions to test your app thoroughly.
What is the difference between low code and no code automation?
The difference wasn’t clear when I started researching low code and no code automation tools almost three years ago. Perhaps today, looking backward, it is pretty obvious, but believe me, sometimes it can create confusion with some Agile Teams. So let’s put it in simpler terms:
Low code automation minimum coding skills are necessary vs. No code automation; no coding skills are required.
Low code automation means minimum coding skill required; still, we can have some code there for specific areas. No code automation means no coding skills are needed, but code is still there. Saying that, in terms of productivity, both options are plentiful; probably the hard part could be about flexibility, as some projects require more customizations than others.
Advantages of no code/low code automation
We must care about the necessity of releasing faster and reducing potential failures on our applications in the current changing world. No code/low code automation is a great way to automate it. However, we need to think about a specific mindset when we adopt these tools.
Let’s consider the following advantage of using no-code/low-code testing tools:
Straightforward Test Automation creation:
No code/low-code automation tools enable you to easily automate large test suites and fasten the product/service delivery speed. In addition, functional Testers can take advantage of the user-friendly interface and create test scripts efficiently.
Test automation faster:
The quicker your automated testing concludes, the faster it will be to identify Bugs and provide feedback. It makes test creation and execution more quickly, even for the most complicated test scripts. These tools help engineers save time and focus on delivering more innovations to the customers.
Low Learning Curve:
We must consider the amount of money to train resources on automated scripting skills, but we could save with No-code/low-code testing as the learning curve is low compared with other scripted tools.
Test Maintenance is more straightforward by leveraging Smart locators or Auto-healing to maintain application objects and elements in test suites.
No code/low code testing tools add some reusable artifacts and Smart Selectors (Autohealing feature), but we need to design our flows correctly, and these tools can provide extra help.
Easy CI/CD third-party integration:
No code testing tools/low code testing tools fully integrate into the most popular CI/CD tools to keep your test automation fully accelerated. It is essential to get faster feedback on any code change.
What does the future hold for no code and low code?
Technology has constantly changed. Yet no one has made software tests perfectly run and identify bugs automatically with a single click. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not talking about a new magical thing, but, currently, we can’t deny that it’s easier than ever to run automated software tests faster with no code automation technology.
In today’s world, we can identify engineers who don’t want to use no code/low code automation tools. But many others are willing to learn about those tools. I remember the same pattern a few decades ago, between people who knew how to use computers and those who didn’t. Also, a few years ago, gen Xers and Millennials discussed who can adapt better to the new technologies and do productive work.
We should consider the popularity of platforms like Roblox or Minecraft. Quickly criticized as just a generation’s obsession with gaming, both platforms instruct kids to build entire worlds using their devices. Even better, as kids push the boundaries of the toolsets offered by these games, they are inspired to develop their tools. Today’s new professionals know how to dive into different systems and programs using no code platforms, solving problems with much more comprehensive and real-time solutions.
As Fuller mentioned, to change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. This new generation is raising the bar on how tools are used in the workplace. They are better than ever at bringing together various individual services and cohering them into practical experiences for their customers, readers, and users.
Professionals need to learn and adapt to changing technologies and business practices in today’s world. In addition, they need to know new tools and skills to be more productive and successful.
No-code/low-code automation requires a new mindset and exceptional leadership.
The No Code generation has the potential to finally fill that missing productivity gap in the global digital economy, making our lives better while saving time for everyone and focusing on the critical things. So it seems wise to have a reasonable paranoia of unexpected obsolescence.
Happy Bug Hunting!
Enrique DeCoss | Senior Quality Assurance Manager | FICO