Unless you’re one of those rare exceptions, you probably hated tests at school. Perhaps you wished a robot could run through those repetitive language vocabulary tests for you.

Unfortunately, robots still can’t do our learning or school testing for us. But in the world of Salesforce, there are some areas where proper automation of QA testing can save budgets and eliminate errors.

What is Salesforce QA testing, and why does it matter?

QA stands for Quality Assurance. It is a process to make sure a company is using a product in the best way possible. It also identifies any problems with a company’s system.

Thus, it can include finding and eliminating bugs, but it also involves identifying inefficient
processes and opportunities to optimise a system.

There are different types of QA tests which are useful for in different situations and depending on a client’s need.

• Unit testing – used to check units of code
• Functional testing –used to check if a user can complete a task as intended
• System testing – used to test the whole system, comprehensive checking from end-to-end ensuring the technical, functional and business requirements are met.
• Regression testing – testing a whole system and its processes after adding new
components and features.
• Production testing – testing a production environment to make sure everything is
working as intended so that end-users aren’t negatively affected.

Proper QA testing means that your organisation’s system avoids costly errors and continues to evolve.

What is the difference between automated Salesforce testing and manual Salesforce testing?

The most obvious difference between manual and automated Salesforce QA testing is the agent of the action. In manual tests, a human carries out the process from start to finish. In automated testing, a program or string of code runs and completes the test.

There are different programs and tools to help automate specific or multiple tests. As you might expect, there are different advantages and disadvantages to both the individual tools and automated testing in general.

What are the benefits of QA automation testing?

One of the key advantages of automated testing is it helps eliminate errors. Humans get tired, lose concentration and make mistakes. A computer will always do what it’s told (to a fault!). Using automated testing we can ensure that a process is repeated exactly and prove that a change or fix has been implemented.

These tests can also be conducted at scale and speed. Automation via computers and programs can run through a set process faster than a human can and can do it again and again. This can save significant time when conducted at scale.

Those two factors combined also help the final advantage, cost. Instead of using your resources to have an employee go through a repetitive test, you can have a program do that task. Now the tester can do something more valuable that a computer can’t.

What are the disadvantages of QA automation testing?

Despite all the advances in AI and Machine learning, Skynet still isn’t here. Humans remain vital in the QA testing process for Salesforce.

As I said before, automated tests follow the process they are assigned to carry out. They cannot deviate or act as a human would. Although this provides the previously listed benefits, it doesn’t help identify new opportunities nor every unexpected problem.

Human flexibility can also save time. Sometimes we need to repeat a test with a minor difference. With automation, this might take time to code, with a human tester, they can immediately change their process.

Human’s don’t always follow the process as expected, and human testers can identify those issues.

If you automate a manual process that is a mess, you get a mess – just faster. Which means you need to optimise manual processes through manual testing. Once you have your manual process in order, then automation can help you speed through your testing.

Related to that point, human testers can be more creative, going beyond the listed expectation and identifying hidden opportunity. In fact, some issues must be tested manually, an example of this is cookie compliance under the GDPR. In this case, manual testing is required to go through every page and check what cookies are downloaded.

Automated tests don’t just grow on trees, they need skilled QA personnel to create and maintain them as well as the infrastructure to support them. Just like many business practices, these become a lot more affordable at scale which isn’t great news for smaller businesses. One way to work around this is through outsourcing.

The best Salesforce QA testing uses automation and manual testing.

Combining both manual and automated QA testing allows us to harness the benefits of both worlds and mitigate the problems of each as well.

We gain the speed, accuracy and reduce costs with automation, but harness the creativity and ingenuity of manual testing and can test what automation can’t.

By starting with manual testing, we can get a company’s manual processes in order, then use automated testing to save time on future tests and avoid human errors.

Together, these ensure we can provide the best service to our clients.