2023. April 28.

Software testing: why it is an essential step in the development

2023. April 28.

Software testing is a part of the software development process that helps to point out bugs and flaws. In this article, we'll explore the topic of testing, learn about the concept, the steps involved, and why it's a step you shouldn't skip!

What is software testing?

The software testing process checks that the software, system, or application created by the developers meets the requirements and expectations described in the specification. Software testing aims to correct bugs so that the software is safe, reliable, and effective to use.

Software testing plays an important role in the software design and development process by helping to identify unforeseen defects before the software or application is used by customers or users. Software testing uses techniques and tools to check aspects such as functionality, performance, security, usability, compatibility, and reliability.

Software testing has many advantages. Let's look at them!

  • Identifying bugs: it points out weaknesses and bugs from early stages, allowing them to be corrected. The earlier a bug is detected, the less it costs to fix and the fewer software updates are needed.
  • Quality assurance: thanks to continuous checks, there is much less chance of a bug following the software through to the end of development, which means higher quality software can be produced. This means that customers will be much more satisfied.
  • Checking compatibility: testing allows you to get an idea of the software's compatibility. You can see how it works on different platforms and environments, operating systems, and browsers.

Presence of testers from the start

You might think that software testing is a priority at the end of the development process, but in fact, testers are involved in the project from the very beginning. They represent the quality assurance aspects during the design phase and propose solutions.

Quality assurance can be different in each phase, for example, unit testing, smoke testing, black box testing, functional testing, safety testing, stress testing, and so on. Let's get to know the most popular testing methods!

  • Unit testing: this is where individual units are tested independently of each other.
  • Smoke testing: designed to detect errors and problems that pose a risk to stability.
  • Black box testing: the method consists of testing the software together with external systems and interfaces. It monitors the result and the outputs, but not the internal implementation or code.
  • Functional testing: this involves checking the functionality of the software.
  • Security testing: this testing analyses the software from a security point of view.
  • Stress testing: stress testing tests the stability and performance of the system under extreme conditions.

In this sense, testing can therefore be attached to the work of the software developers throughout the whole process, i.e. testing and development are carried out simultaneously.

How is testing performed?

In many cases, especially where the development team is smaller, testing is done by the developers themselves. However, where there is a strong IT presence, or in a specialised software development company, there are people specifically dedicated to testing.

The testing itself can be done manually, which is less common, and with the help of programs. Manual testing means that the software developer, the tester, clicks through the elements of the software by hand, whereas automated testing means that human capacity is tied up, instead a program is created that tests the software or system. This saves a significant amount of time, reduces the possibility of errors, and allows much more accurate tests to be run.

Why not skip software testing?

The importance of testing is to ensure that the final result is of high quality. Many customers may think testing is unnecessary, as it will be found out in the end whether it works and, besides, it just means extra working hours and costs. However, if there is no testing, the result will almost certainly not be what the client wants, the elements of the software will not form a coherent whole, they will simply be lines of code one after the other without a system and a concept.

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