Yes, Performance Testing Doesn't Go Far Enough!
Traditional performance testing is no longer enough!
Rising customer expectations, escalating competitive efforts, rapid digital transformation, and the phenomenal rise of emerging technologies are pushing organisations to move into the age of Quality Assurance 3.0 or Digital Quality Assurance & Engineering. These new strategies take an expanded view of quality and ensure that traditional quality assurance processes can change to accelerate application delivery and become a catalyst to digital transformation instead of becoming a barrier.
The shift from testing to Digital Quality Assurance & Engineering allows organisations to achieve quality objectives. Reports show that the software quality assurance market is projected to expand at a CAGR of 8.80% and will reach USD 20.8 Billion by 2030.
While testing is non-negotiable, it can seem like a roadblock that stands between accelerated development processes and automated operations-driven delivery processes. These siloed testing structures are not solution driven and can distract from the real goal of optimising the broader user experience.
The Challenge with Reports-Focused Performance Testing
Today, achieving stellar results across metrics like reliability, availability and high performance of software products and solutions are non-negotiables in a software-defined world. Traditional performance testing that simply identified bugs and performance impediments worked for a while to provide the quality assurance needed. Today, however, a performance testing report that simply highlights the problems holds little value coming as it does at the end of the cycle.
Traditional performance testing reports provide credible information about the applications and systems' performance and measure how all the non-functional elements are working. These reports, however, do not provide the solutions or actionable insights to address these issues. They also tend to point out issues at a stage when go-to-market pressures and resource constraints combine to perpetuate a natural desire to bypass rather than fix structural problems.
Performance testing reports can be considered akin to the results of a blood test or an ultrasound. While there is a lot of data available, the health report is only of real value when a doctor looks at it and provides the solution to the problem. This is even more valuable when the fix is found early enough to allow a cure to take effect before great damage occurs.
A performance testing report without the right solutions, roadmap, or remediation plan is like a blood report without the doctor's recommendations. These reports now need to provide more impactful information that allows for faster product engineering. Creating these reports and having another team identify the fixes or potential solutions, then moving those on for development and then again to testing, and then finally to deployment is a long-drawn process.
Performance testing reports deliver value when they provide a clear, actionable solution to the problems identified. These challenges also need to be categorised and prioritised based on severity and the business impact. However, these reports do not provide these insights.
Performance Testing Has To Move Toward Performance Engineering
Accelerating the performance of applications with speed and agility needs more than superficial reports. To optimize this process, however, it is important for organisations to first understand how every part of the system fits together, identify the metrics that matter, and move away from running a checkbox performance test script.
Instead, to test performance and ensure it, organisations need to know how all parts of the system work together and how each part, technology choice, platform, configuration, hardware choice, etc., contributes towards performance.
As applications and IT systems become business-critical, traditional performance testing simply does not go far enough.
Moving From Detecting Problems to Preventing Failure
Performance testing has to now move from detecting problems to preventing failures. Engineering for performance allows organisations to ensure that they extract the maximum value from their hardware and software investments.
Providing detailed solutions and recommendations based on performance tests ensures that performance test reports become a viable tool to improve the overall performance and user experience of the software applications and systems. It is of no real value if it simply collects and collates data.
Performance testing reports add value when they assess the performance, availability, scalability, and security-related issues across all layers of the technology stack and provide the solutions to prevent and rapidly resolve them. These reports need to detail the complexities of integrated applications that use heterogeneous technologies in multi-vendor scenarios to make it easier to identify and resolve these issues.
Accelerating Development and Testing Velocity
The pace of updates, upgrades, and new feature development has also increased phenomenally, owing to rising customer expectations, rapid digital transformation, and the promise of emerging technologies. For applications where there is no source code available, identifying the issues that impact the technology layer becomes a big challenge. However, taking the performance engineering approach helps in mitigating this challenge.
Performance engineering will use a data-driven approach and leverage sufficient empirical analysis using powerful technology platforms to deploy timely fixes and provide faster resolution for complex technical issues.
Delivering Peak Performance
As continuous improvement becomes a mandate across the software development landscape, it becomes essential for IT systems to be consistently engineered and managed for peak performance. Businesses must develop the capacity to proactively and continuously improve the Quality of Service (QoS) of IT systems and applications in production and prevent performance bottlenecks such as unplanned downtime.
Performance testing reports, as such, have to be insightful to help enterprises :-
• Improve the predictability and reliability of IT systems and applications across the entire technology stack
• Ensure that there are no surprises and that the production applications and IT systems are always available and highly optimised
• Provide monitoring and assurance and detailed solutions to challenges for time-bound resolutions
At one point in time, test automation adoption was the most important factor for driving the health and performance of software applications and systems. However, the time for the evolution of testing is now upon us, as testing applications and systems is no longer enough. We have to ensure that these can be tested rapidly across all levels, including the infrastructure and third-party dependencies, and then swiftly resolve all performance-related issues and fixes.
Today, traditional testing stands at the cusp of change with NextGen QA solutions as enterprises demand greater development, testing, and deployment speed to meet evolving market demands and keep pace with rapid digital transformation and the opportunities it brings. Most importantly, these help in keeping pace with rising customer expectations and ensuring that IT systems and applications are always rigged for high performance and availability. Get in touch with us to learn more.