Top 8 Automated Regression Testing Challenges in Agile | How to Overcome it?

Overcome common Regression Testing challenges and ensure that any change does not impact the quality of the software deliverable. Agile development is acclaimed for delivering working software frequently. Each time it adds or enhances a minor feature that is of value to the customer.

We need to plan our Regression Testing effectively to cater to the changing demands in Agile. Let us start with one of the major Regression Testing challenges.

Top 8 Regression Testing Challenges

Regression testing ensures that modifications or upgrades to a program or system do not affect previously tested functionality. However, various issues can influence the quality of the testing process, such as the following.

1.Optimizing and selecting the right test cases

The test cases affected due to a change may not be the same reason for another. Identifying the relevant affected test cases is a major problem in Regression Testing.

Prioritize test cases affected by a new function addition, update, or edit. Only run these instead of a complete test suite with irrelevant test cases and overloading. Identify the affected regions and analyze how changes, new features, or bug fixes might have impacted existing features and functionalities.

Regularly monitor and perform periodic cleanup to remove obsolete and duplicate test cases from the regression test suites.

If the Automated regression testing is done consistently, it will be easier to optimize and maintain the right test cases.

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2.Test Authoring time

It could be challenging to keep up with the pace of delivery in Agile with the huge scripting necessary time to test a simple functionality and rewrite every affected test. Updating and maintaining huge scripts at any time requires understanding the existing code. But one major disadvantage of Selenium is the huge test authoring time required.

Cutting down on the test authoring time allows us to use the full benefits of automating the regression testing process. This is now possible with the advent of Scriptless Automation Testing tools! Now, the tests can be written using natural language; This makes it easy for anyone to refer to the tests and make changes easily at any time.

Upcoming, you may refer to a more detailed discussion of the features ideal for a scriptless automation testing tool. You might also want to know how Testsigma can be the best Scriptless Automation Testing Tool and save you time and cost.

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3.Close the Communication gap

Effective communication forms the basis of the success of Agile. Continuous engagement with the team ensures that the client expectations are met, testers find quick solutions to issues and the deliverables meet customer expectations. Quite often, major issues or bugs are not identified early because the process was not followed and the team failed to communicate with each other.

A useful communication tool that will help understand the status of the project and broadcast changes.

4.Examine and choose the right automation testing tools

We need to choose Automated Regression Testing tools that make the re-editing or rework of Regression Testing easier. You may want to refer this guide to help you choose an Automated Regression Testing Tool effectively.

Intelligent automated regression testing tools like Testsigma help you create Regression test plans automatically and suggest all affected automated tests and areas so you can spend less time identifying affected areas and advice fixes.

The main challenges with conventional test automation are building a robust and maintainable automation framework and managing the “likely to change” objects and ui-identifiers. The automation testing tool must ensure that the automated tests are reusable and maintainable and non-resistant to changes in the application UI and also ensure that the automated tests remain stable(automatically).

What you can do is get the vendors to demonstrate how implementing their tool will minimize risk and improve the release quality.

Ensuring that a website functions as expected in all major browsers and mobile devices or tablets across different screen resolutions and sizes is challenging for testers in agile projects to manage and run them in parallel. It is particularly daunting to perform Regression Testing across browsers and devices.

Managing environment specific datasets and variables that are likely to change in multiple execution environments at each stage like Development, Testing, Staging, Production is also crucial. Check if the automated regression testing tool offer real devices for testing to speed up your run times.

Also, choose an automated regression testing tool that can integrate with tools such as Jenkins, so you can run your regression tests continuously right from the first build incrementally and collate the results on a consistent loop integrated with the testing server which helps in getting actionable feedback allowing dev teams to act on them immediately in contrast to late hitting bugs towards the end of the sprint.

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5.Reduce the Dev/Test Complete Gap

Regression tests must be run after every development iteration and after changes are made. The delivery pipeline should trigger regression tests automatically whenever a successful build is made. This results in a shorter feedback loop between developers and testers, leading to faster error identification and fixing. This saves time compared to testing postponed towards the end of the cycle.

6.Build Automation In-sprint

Automation usually lags by at least one sprint. Teams take the risk of ignoring regression testing of the new feature at the end of the cycle due to the amount of manual effort and time required to achieve complete test coverage. Instead, the tester can begin building the skeleton of an automated test and fill in the objects/element ui identifiers later when the application UI is available.

Once the UI is close to done, all the participants should be working more closely to complete the UI mapping. This ensures the tests are completely automated along with the development and ready to run through continuous integration.

By the time the code is complete and ready to be committed, there are unit tests, API tests, and a handful of automated UI tests. The feature is all set for automated regression testing and then to move to the production.

Regression testing is now faster and the development flow will be smooth.

7.Deal with changing Requirements

The Agile methodology allows for change in requirements even late in the development. The scrum teams need to be prepared to accept the late change in requirements. When the requirements change, especially towards the end of the sprint and a particular functionality hasn’t been tested well, the team should make informed decisions whether to release the feature or push it to the next sprint based on the criticality of that function/feature. If this is the case, you could do a heads off by performing basic Sanity testing of the changes and not go into deeper levels of testing.

It can also be the case that the user stories/requirements are not recorded appropriately and, the team missed out on critical functionalities. This can also happen as a result of not involving testers in the early planning/designing phases or due to improper documentation.

Many a time, product requirement documents are too often read once and left which isn’t ideal for an Agile process. This creates a challenge for testers because there is a lack of understanding and requirements, so proper test cases can’t be constructed.

8.Perform some Exploratory Testing

When everything goes fine, you could do some free unrestricted or “not bound by rules” testing with less or no documentation. You can see if you missed out on anything or an unused feature.

It would be wise to set a dedicated time for some exploratory testing complementary to Regression Testing to explore other areas of the software like a real user would.

The purpose of regression testing is to unmask abnormalities, unexpected behavior as a result of change, updates, or re-releases. For this, it is required that every relevant test case that has direct or indirect impact is run within the limited span of time in the sprint.

It is mandatory that a consistent test management and requirement management approach is followed right from the early stages within the automated regression testing tool you choose.

Automated Regression Testing Tool built for Agile and Continuous Delivery, Testsigma’s smart AI can identify the changes made to an application and analyze its impact on relevant affected test cases.

You may have to run regression tests in parallel to be able to run it more often. With Testsigma, you can schedule your test executions to run periodically without manual intervention sequentially or in parallel any time.

You get detailed reports of your automated regression test executions on multiple device configurations with detailed error logs as to what failed, what tests are affected and why.

Take a look at Testsigma’s approach to Automated Regression Testing with an organized and well managed repository of regression test suites, reusable objects and identifiers.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the disadvantages of regression testing?

One of the major disadvantages is the time and effort necessary to run regression tests, which may be particularly significant in big, sophisticated applications. Additionally, regression testing may not always capture all faults, and it may be impossible to test every scenario fully in some cases.

How do you overcome regression testing challenges?

A well-defined testing strategy and relevant tools and methodologies are necessary to address the obstacles of regression testing. This includes prioritizing test cases based on criticality, maintaining appropriate test data management standards, and employing automated testing technologies to boost productivity and decrease the risk of human mistakes. Testing should be carried out throughout the development lifecycle.

What are the pros and cons of regression testing?

Regression testing helps verify that previously tested functionality is not impacted by modifications or upgrades. It can detect errors early in the development process and evaluate the program’s overall quality. The time and effort necessary to run regression tests, the expenses involved with maintaining and upgrading test cases and data, and the chance that it may not identify all flaws are all disadvantages are also a few of the regression testing challenges. The choice to do regression testing should be based on a detailed examination of each project’s possible advantages and drawbacks.

Suggested Readings

Regression Testing Guide for Modern Agile Teams

Automated Regression Testing | Low Code

Regression Test Automation: A Quickstart Guide

Functional vs Regression Testing: What’s the difference?

Automating Regression Testing with Selenium: All you need to know

A Detailed Guide to Frameworks for Regression Testing

The Agile Team’s Guide to Regression Testing

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