Before leaving work today I had a small unofficial meeting with my collegues in how we should argue for a large investment in an inhouse project to automate testing. Managment listens to economic reasoning. We developers have a hunch it will be good.
Is this something you have been through, or was it natural for everyone involved to go for automated testing?
The arguments we collected are basically along these lines:
- if we write automated tests, we free up manual testing man-hours. Especially since we have different parallell product lines (stable and experimental), and we can easily test on our list of supported platforms,
- with automated tests we can make more releases per year, which means we’re more agile in customer-ordered projects,
- automated tests are better than buying cheap outsourced labour, so we can stay smaller and more high-competence,
- finally, automated tests is a new kind of testing for us that allow us to find race conditions and deadlocks from long-running tests (plus, while writing them we will likely find new issues other testing was not as effective at finding).
It is actually quite difficult to translate the above list into absolute savings in money. It is all very vague and word of mouth that it is a good approach. In the end it is all about optimizing the profit of the product.