Manual Testing vs Automation Testing – What to choose and why?

    • October 2, 2020
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    It’s a common question for everyone that how the evolution of testing begins, Let’s dig out.

    As the market dependency increases, the technology grew, companies grew, and additional features came into the figure. Today, we can find rapid development and adoption of Agile methods have moved from friendly to must-have. The development cycle becomes faster and more aimed to implement new features that last a few weeks. To reduce the development cycle, software testing was introduced. In the year 2015, Statista states 32% of software project failures which leads to the insufficient time allocated for testing.

    No doubt, manual testing performs well in areas and gives excellent results, but wasn’t fruitful when the repeated task was allocated. Therefore, Automation testing comes into the picture. It works well on iterative tasks; parallel testing done on multiple devices and solving small to complex errors in a minute. Moreover, the system generates reports which can help in later finding the difference between market leader and weak competitors.  

    What is Manual Testing?

    Testing of the software is executed manually by QA Analyst. It was performed to discover bugs in the software which is under development. Here, in Manual testing, the tester would check the essential features of a given software/application. The tester will execute the test cases and generate test reports without using automated software testing tools. Manual testing is one of the classical methods that helps to find bugs in software systems. It generally conducted an experienced tester for accomplishing the software testing process.

    What is Automation Testing?

    In Automated software testing, the tester uses automated tools to develop test scripts and validate the software. The tester writes code and test script to automate test execution. The main goal of the tester is to complete the task in less time. The automated test services rely on the pre-scripted test, which runs to compare actual tests with expected results. Later the tester determines how an application performs and what is expected.

    Here, automated services allow executing repetitive tasks efficiently without the intervention of manual testers. Even the process performed automatically, and it requires manual efforts to create initial testing scripts.

    Let’s check the difference between Manual Testing vs Automation Testing.

    ParameterManual TestingAutomated Testing
    DefineTest cases executed by human testers and software. Tester makes use of automated tools to execute the test case. 
    Processing TimeA Bit time consuming and takes more human resources. Faster than Manual Approach
    Initial InvestmentThe Initial cost is less and ROI gets low in the long run. The Initial investment is higher, and ROI gets better in the long run. 
    Exploratory TestingIt’s possible in Manual Testing.It does not allow random testing. 
    UI Change A small change in execution wouldn’t affect much in manual testing.Any change in UI needs to be modified to work as expected.
    ReliabilityIt’s not accurate as there are chances of human errors.It’s a reliable method as there’s no testing fatigue.
    InvestmentFor human resources, the investment needed.Investment needed for automation tools.
    Human ObservationIt allows human observation which is useful to offer a user-friendly system. Automated testing does not involve human consideration, so there’s never any customer experience. 
    Cost-EffectiveNo cost-effectiveness for high volume regressionsNo cost-effectiveness for low volume regression
    Test Report VisibilityIt usually records in Excel, and test results are not readily available. With automation testing, all can log in to the automation system and check test results.  
    Performance TestingIt’s not feasible in manual testing.It can load testing; spike testing has been tested by an automation tool. 
    Batch TestingIt cannot batchCan allow batching multiple test scripts for nightly execution. 
    Parallel ExecutionIt will increase human resources which is expensive. Executed on different OS in parallel and reduces the execution time. 
    SetupIt needs a simple test execution setup. It requires a less complicated test execution setup. 
    Programming KnowledgeNo Need in Manual It is a must in Automation. 
    EngagementRepetitive test execution is tedious and error-prone. It’s accurate and done using tools. 
    Framework It doesn’t use a framework but may use a checklist and guidelines to draft certain test cases. It uses frameworks like Data Drive, Hybrid, and keyword to accelerate the automation process. 
    Ideal ApproachIt used when the test case needs to run once or twice. It used when we need to execute the same set frequently. 
    DeadlinesComes with a higher risk of missing a pre-decided test deadline. Comes with zero risks of missing out a pre-decided test. 
    Build Verification TestingIt’s tough and time-consuming in manual testing. It’s useful for build verification testing. 
    Test DesignIt does not drive design into the coding process. It helps to drive a test-driven development design. 
    DevOpsIt helps to defeat the automated build principle of DevOps. Understand devOps benefitsHelps to build verification testing and an integral part of the DevOps cycle. 
    DocumentationDoesn’t provide training value.It does provide training value as new developers can look into a unit test case and understand the code. 
    When to use?Suitable for Usability, Exploratory and Adhoc testing. Used for Regression Testing, Performance Testing, Load Testing and highly repeatable functional test cases. 

    What are the Pros and Cons of Manual testing and Automation testing?

    Pros of Manual Testing

    • Fast and Accurate
    • Less Expensive
    • Human Judgement and Intuition
    • Small testing can be done easily.

    Cons of Manual Testing

    • A less reliable method, as chances of prone mistake.
    • The annual testing process can’t record
    • Few tasks are problematic as they are performed manually.

    Pros of Automated Testing

    • Helps in finding more bugs than humans
    • Gives speedy and efficient process
    • Allows to reuse and execute the same kind of testing
    • The system does not get tired and fatigue like humans.
    • Supports various applications
    • The system never misses a small error.

    Cons of Automated Testing

    • Without the human, it can’t add visual aspects like UI color, font sizes, and button sizes.
    • The testing tool isn’t foolproof and reduces the scope of automation.
    • Debugging is another issue and maintenance is costly.

    Don’t miss to read this handy checklist for automation testing.

    Final Thoughts

    By keeping in mind the above approach for Manual testing and automated testing, you can achieve quality output with well in-budget and within the timeline. In general, automated testing wouldn’t make sense for short-term projects because the upfront cost is too high. Also, if you’re testing for things that require the human touch like usability, it’s better to have a ‘human’ tester. Hire our testing team for excellent results.

    Companies that have little expertise in the area also recommend beginning with manual testing. Once the team has mastered testing risks and test coverage, they can then move toward automation, considering the prior mentioned facts, and go for the best choice.