What factors determine automation feasibilty?

  • What are the prime factors which bring automation into play? When does a test manager / lead determine the need to automate an application? What factors influence Automation feasibility?

  • Automation Feasibility

    • What is the timeframe ?
    • What is the cost of failure ?
    • How fast are development cycles ?
    • What current testing is highly repetitive ?
    • How quickly do we need to get feedback ?
    • How complex is the process being tested ?
    • Who is available with the necessary skills ?
    • How much do automation developers cost ?
    • What is the desired shape of our test pyramid ?
    • How deterministic is testing, are results defined ?
    • How many devices and versions are tested manually ?
    • What coverage do we have for Unit, and Integrated tests ?
    • How much time is available (automation takes longer in the short term) ?

    For the items regarding cost:
    Cost is always a factor. If revenue is $100,000 per hour then the cost of failure is relatively high and it makes sense to pay a lot of manual testers or automation engineers. If the current revenue is $10 per hour then it may make less sense to spend money on testing, either manually or through automation. Similarly if the revenue over 6 months is $12,000 it (may) not make sense to pay an automation engineer $60k ($120,000 / 2) and it may make more sense to do manual testing.

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