The user experience has become critically important in today’s digital world, even as organizations struggle to align testing with the speed of delivery.

Functional tests, performance tests and UI tests, among others, can reveal if an application isn’t behaving or performing as expected. But on their own, they can’t tell you if your user is having a great experience. And as we know, a poor experience can lead to losing customers and revenue, as well as  damage your company’s reputation.

To ensure a good user experience, organizations need to understand their products, they need to know their markets and they need to have empathy for their users. Once that’s established, according to Gevorg Hovsepyan, head of product at test automation platform mabl, you need to make sure your testing strategy aligns with that.

“You need to have a good pulse on what your customers are experiencing, and the quality of that,” Hovsepyan said. “Because ultimately, your goal is to deliver a great customer experience. It’s not just to make sure your API endpoint provides the right JSON structure.” 

With changes in the markets and the need to have everything digital drive faster delivery and better experiences, you need to do UI testing to understand the performance, you need to understand the accessibility, and you need to appreciate the impact on the organization’s business and revenue if those things aren’t addressed, he said.

“For example,” Hovsepyan explained, “if you’re an airline and plan to offer discounted fares on a particular date, your website needs to be able to handle that surge in traffic.  If your website doesn’t perform to enable 10,000 people to buy those tickets, or 1,000 people to buy those tickets, then your bottom line takes a direct hit. Your CFOs and your executives will look at that and ask what happened, and those would-be customers are less likely to book another trip with you.” 

This has led to a shift in mindset to determine where – and how – you test the experience of your customer. It has become increasingly important for the entire organization to contribute to  quality.

Hovsepyan said mabl believes everyone in the organization should be able to participate in building high-quality software, and approaches testing  from a low-code perspective that enables product managers, business teams and engineers who wouldn’t always participate in quality to be able to quickly create tests or reports that are important to them.

Mabl sees quality engineering as a strategic practice that integrates testing into development pipelines to improve the customer experience and business outcomes. Similarly to DevOps, quality engineering seeks to bring teams from across the software development organization together to establish a shared understanding of quality and how everyone can contribute to it. 

Hovsepyan said that low-code test automation enables everyone to participate in testing and contribute to quality engineering, even if they don’t have a lot of coding experience.

“At mabl, we believe that quality is a combination of multiple things from functional to non-functional. So our solution is a modern SaaS cloud platform that unifies all testing capabilities.” Beyond functional testing, mabl has added visual testing, PDF testing, accessibility testing and performance reporting, bringing different testing capabilities into a single unified quality engineering platform that enables users to assess quality, he explained.

Taking steps toward quality engineering

Hovsepyan said first and foremost, organizations should start with a strategic mindset and seek to understand the state of your business, what your business is trying to accomplish, and how quality-related issues might contribute to your business performance – positively or negatively. “If you don’t do that,” he said, “selling your ideas down the road is going to get increasingly harder.”

Once you understand the state of the business, he advised doing a self-assessment to determine the state of quality within your company. “This doesn’t necessarily include understanding the quality of your technology,” he pointed out. “It’s also understanding your org structure, and the skill sets you have in your team. How do you see your plans developing? How can you broaden quality contributions so that testing matches the needs of your customers in the long-term?” 

Finally, he said, assess the maturity of your testing capabilities. Is the team mostly doing manual testing, or is some automation involved? Do you have scripts and infrastructure in place? Then, he concluded, look for modern technologies that are coming to market to help accelerate the journey toward quality engineering.

Content provided by SD Times and mabl