The need for regression testing mainly arises when there is a requirement to change the code, and then to test whether the modified code affects other parts of the software application. Moreover, regression testing is needed when a new feature is added. Its primary purpose is to fix defects as well as correct performance issues. It is a process that continues throughout the life cycle of an application. Businesses should develop an effective strategy for regression testing to deliver high-quality software to customers.
This type of testing should be used when:
• A bug or error is fixed in the software
• A new feature or functionality is introduced into the software
• The existing system is integrated with a new module or component • Requirement changes are initiated
• UI changes are made in the software
In an agile environment, the developers develop new features or make additions or improvements to the code, while regression testing is simultaneously performed on all new and old features. Agile methodology focuses on fast and iterative development, where the product is developed in sprints, and features are rolled out each cycle. Regression testing in agile gives a clear vision to all the stakeholders in the business on the delivered software post implementing the code changes. Regression testing in agile ensures the code changes done have not introduced any bugs in the software.
So how do we adopt effective strategies for regression testing?
1. Identify The Need
The first step is to identify the need for regression. Ideally, as soon as a change takes place in the application, this form of testing should follow. The main goal is to check the existing functionalities of the affected components.
2. Define Requirements
It is critical to deliver frequent feature updates in a fast moving team, requiring a collaborative strategy between business holders, developers and the testing team. This helps greatly in developing the most appropriate and optimal test cases for the situation. Moreover, testers should prepare and prioritize test cases for problematic areas and critical scenarios.
3. Define Entry and Exit Criteria:
The entry and exit criteria for tests are closely related to the purpose and expected results. The entry criteria are the conditions that must be met before starting a test whereas exit criteria are the conditions that must be met before the test is completed. Entry and exit points should be such that the test objectives are aligned with test and feature requirements. Thus, defining entry and exit points eases the testing process and validates the delivery of quality features for customers.
4. Conduct Code Reviews
A code review process should ideally be a collaborative effort between developers and QA engineers. It does not matter if testers have knowledge of coding but participation helps them to stay updated on the changes made to the code. This further enables testers to center their attention on those changes at the time of testing.
As previously stated, today’s businesses operate in a highly volatile market driven by ever-changing customer requirements. To better address customers, businesses make every possible effort to ensure that their software is attractive and user-friendly, and this effort is continuous. As businesses continue to make changes in their software, they should employ solid regression testing strategies and processes to ensure that it is high-quality and defect-free software.