Do you remember some businesses smirking at the possibility of the majority of the workforce becoming remote? We’ve all seen their reluctance to accept the new model of work. Well, who had the last laugh now! The pandemic changed the way the world used to operate. While some changes turned out to be reversible as each coronavirus wave came to a halt, remote work is here to last with Remote QA Teams. Even if companies switch to a hybrid work concept, things are unlikely to completely go back to conventional working.
Remote working started as a trend in 2020. Even though most people predicted that it would end soon after things got back to normal. But guess what? Virtual is the new normal now! Most companies started to adjust to this evergreen trend. A part of acclimatization to the new scenario is identifying challenges of remote work and coming up with smart ways to overcome them.
As most IT companies facilitated work from home for their employees, it made them realize the challenges remote QA teams faced. The dependency on the Internet infrastructure, and physical devices to name a few. Remote testing teams encountered some glitches while executing designated tasks. This is exactly what this post will address. We are going to start out by listing the challenges faced by remote QA teams and move on to how to overcome them. Let’s dig in.
- Communication Challenges
Communicating issues involving critical interpretations can be tricky online. Sometimes, due to a global team spreading across the world, understanding of certain phrases vary and translation problems are also bound to occur.
For initiating a better grasping of things such as test scenarios, testing tools, and requirements, experts recommend hopping on a quick video call. After all, you should never underestimate the power of expressions when it comes to flawless communication!
As a tester, you are responsible for communicating any potential bottlenecks as quickly as possible. From the point of view of quality standards, communicating whether the team should release the product in the market or not is a huge responsibility. But hassle-free communication paired up with a step-by-step release, developers, testers, and marketers can work together to ensure the highest quality of a product before release.
Last but not least, whether you’re a team member or team leader, always promote asking questions and instant clarification of doubts. If you’re a team member, you might have faced some hard times deciding who you should pose your query to. You might also have wondered whether it made even a little bit of sense to ask questions regarding past discussions.
Well, to maintain synchronicity, it’s vital to ask as many questions as possible until you reach 100% clarity. If you’re a team leader, encourage members to be transparent about their doubts. When you are all on the same page, it eliminates the possibility of unnecessary delays and potential mistakes.
- Choosing The Right Automated Cross Browser Testing Tool
No matter how good a tool is, as long as it doesn’t promote seamless collaboration and integration with other tools, it’s futile in today’s era of remote work. Testers need access to automation frameworks, browser and device emulators and simulators, integration with project management tools, collaboration with coworkers, report generation, and communication. This goes without saying, the cross browser testing tool you are using needs to have its test infrastructure on the cloud.
You should use an automation testing tool that enables testing of websites and web applications for or a wide combination of browsers & OS for cross browser compatibility testing, regression testing, responsiveness testing, geolocation testing, testing of locally hosted web pages, and so on.
LambdaTest provides all the above-mentioned functionalities along with video recording and screenshot testing. You can share them with your team members as they are helpful in keeping a record of test sessions for future reference. The best part is that LambdaTest has recently introduced HyperTest, a blazing fast next-generation cloud solution for 70% faster cross browser testing.
Users have instant access to more than 3000 browsers, operating systems, and device combinations. This way, QA teams can solely focus on testing without having to fret over availability issues. Teams can easily connect the tools of their choice for file issues, capturing bugs, and instantly notifying the concerned team member without having to leave the dashboard. This eliminates waste of time and context switching which enables teams to work on high-impact tasks together.
- Test-Driven Development (TDD)
Creating tests after developing a feature can cause delays. Therefore, it is advisable to adopt a Test Driven Development (TDD) approach. In that, you can create tests before developing a feature. The QA team is responsible for automating test cases for the concerned feature and integrating them into their system. The test will only pass when the feature develops and exhibits expected behavior.
Usually, developers have to wait for feedback from the team. But after implementing Test Driven Development (TDD), they can easily obtain real-time feedback on the development of that feature since they only need to run their code through to test cases that already exist. The analysis of test results will also go hand in hand. However, you should note that developers and testers need to work in a tightly coupled manner for enhanced productivity and flexibility.
- Manual Regression Testing Challenges
When you manually perform regression testing, there is always a need to make multiple iterations. This can cost the team a lot of time and resources. Not to mention, this process can turn out to be error-prone and serious. So, what’s the solution? Well, it’s no secret that automation is highly significant in enhancing the quality of the product along with providing teams with a high level of flexibility.
Automating regression testing is especially important in a remote working scenario. Automation increases the efficiency of regression testing and increases productivity. Developers don’t need to wait for testers’ feedback on changes in code after regression testing. On the other hand, testers don’t need to worry about immediate test changes. This increases the plausibility of independent work which further simplifies remote testing.
- Privacy and Security Concerns and How To Address Them
Privacy and security are the major points of concern for remote testing teams. Before you release the product in the market, it’s vital to maintain confidentiality. The risk of internal information leaks always persists. However, it’s equally important for testers to communicate status updates with stakeholders and colleagues.
This calls for the need for a password-protected cloud-based platform like LambdaTest that prohibits any outside user access to internal information.
- Agile Frameworks At Different Environment and Testing Stages
Let’s face it, the QA teams already have a lot to worry about adjusting to complete remote work. Minimizing human intervention by implementing an agile framework can go a long way in smoothening out the process. Agile methodologies implement a CI/CD pipeline ensuring the immediate testing of code changes right after their integration into the web applications interface.
You can execute this at various stages such as QA, production, staging, and development. You can even implement them for different stages of testing such as performance testing, acceptance testing, integration testing, and unit testing.
An example is to automatically execute unit tests right after the integration of a code change in the centralized source code repository. Acceptance tests and integration tests follow along. This way developers can obtain immediate feedback and every team member is empowered to work with more flexibility.
- Internet Connectivity Struggles
Soon after the introduction of mass remote work, the dependency on the internet has risen to a manifold. This has caused internet connectivity troubles throughout the world. It results in unnecessary delays if the connection is down somewhere. To address this woe, schedule your automated tests for running in off-hours, that is when testers are not using the internet at its peak.
Progressive teams have already started scheduling tests overnight followed by report analysis the next morning. A tool that enables users to send reports right after the end of a test run is your way to go. You should also be able to analyze the status of the testing process independent of your location.
- Systematic Bug Documentation For The Entire QA Team
Whether you work from the office or from home, quick and effortless identification of bugs is the goal. But since testers are working in isolation in each other’s absence, sometimes, things are likely to slip out from the mind. To adhere to team norms, it’s important to establish a standardized set of documentation guidelines. This promotes consistent reporting of bugs with screenshots for screen recordings which reduces the time for analyzing and troubleshooting bugs.
Amp Up The Potential of Your QA Teams By Overcoming The Above Challenges
If you are a member of the QA team, I hope you could relate to the challenges mentioned above. Remote work is a relatively new concept and every new change requires some getting accustomed to. The best way to get the most out of remote testing processes is to identify bottlenecks and take practical measures to overcome them as soon as possible.
Partial remote work is one thing. But before 2020, no one imagined that the entire workforce in companies would have to face this implementation. Just like with any other career, remote testing comes with its own set of unique challenges. But what’s of primate importance is to acknowledge such obstacles and figure out steps to overcome them.
I can’t stress this enough but it’s hard to express the importance of QA in words. After all, do you think releasing high-quality software products is possible without driving special emphasis on the quality of testing? A consistent focus on challenges faced by remote QA teams and how they can overcome them can strengthen the virtual workforce. It’s high time we all ditch the idea of the newness in remote testing since it’s no longer new.
Is there any other challenge you think we missed out on in this last? Do you have a better solution in mind for the challenges we mentioned? Our readers would love to know how you are overcoming them. Sound off your thoughts in the comments below.