Is manual testing dead? OR the role of manual testing converging?

Is Manual Testing dead


When you look at all the testing job ads today that mention ‘Automation Testing’ it makes us wonder if manual testing is dying or if it’s already dead?  Why this change? And how can Manual testers succeed in the current market?

Testing that was once all performed manually, by exploratory methods or by carefully executing test steps, is now done with the help of various automation tools, reducing the number of test cases that have to be run. CI/CD and test automation are taking priority over manual testing and much of the manual testing needs that remain are outsourced to overseas teams.

Both Manual and automated testing have their benefits and disadvantages but knowing the difference and when to use one over the other for best results is the key.

  • Manual testing is best suited for projects where the tester’s knowledge, experience, analytical skills, and creativity is required to support tight deadlines or lack of documentation. User Acceptance Test (UAT) is another area where manual testing helps to test how user-friendly or efficient the product is to the end user.
  • Automation testing is used by companies to deliver software solutions with improved quality and a significant reduction in test-cycle time. It has the ability to make the testing process more efficient and effective while giving consistent results. It’s widely used for regression testing, Load testing, and Performance testing.

Here are our suggestions to stay relevant in response to the current trend.

Acknowledge the change and develop skill-sets

The agile software development process has made software testers and developers work together to make a quality product. The DevOps methodology enforces the emphasis of quality throughout the SDLC and the entire team assumes responsibility for quality.

It’s critical that you know and understand the most modern testing techniques. There are many resources available to practice and master the skills.  Manual testing knowledge is important for software testing, but in the current market it’s difficult to find a job with only manual testing skills. Automation involves code and learning automation with a programming language like Python or Java is a valuable to have in your toolbelt. Other skills like XML, HTML, CSS, XPATH, and SOAP are also good to learn.

Becoming familiar with open source languages and tools will also help you stay relevant with automation roles. Selenium is one of the popular and convenient tools to learn for automation testing. ‘Selenium Simplified’ by Alan Richardson is a great starting point for beginners. Knowledge of other testing frameworks like Nightwatch.JS, Cucumber (support for most major languages), Jasmine (for JavaScript) and Protractor, and Continuous Integration tools like Jenkins CI and TeamCity will also help you get the most out of automated testing.

There are numerous online resources available to help you learn the ins and outs of automated testing. If possible, work closely with other automation engineers and developers to learn their tools and best practices. Transitioning from a manual tester to automation engineer is a great way to continue down the path of success.

While manual testing isn’t dead or dying its scope is reduced and progressively augmented by automation tools. Working to learn new skills and knowledge is always a good practice in the fast-paced, ever changing world of technology.

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