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Top Highlights of STARWEST Virtual+ 2020

Much of the conversations and content at STARWEST Virtual+ was dominated by themes like continuous testing, test automation, the role of DevOps, utilization of AI & ML in QA, and digital transformation.

Digital quality leaders from all over the world gathered to share their insights, success stories, and industry expectations at STARWEST Virtual+ 2020. This year’s conference was morphed into a fully virtual experience. However, the lack of face-to-face interactions and physical attendance did not dampen the excitement around this conference one little bit. This year’s conference was packed with 75+ talks — including keynotes, tutorials, and sessions all delivered in a winning and interactive premium virtual atmosphere.

Our participation in the first fully digital STARWEST Virtual+, as a Gold sponsor, was truly rewarding. We enjoyed the great content and sessions around pertinent testing and QA issues. In fact, we even added to the conference’s knowledge quotient by delivering a powerful session around “Transforming Test Automation with DevOps, AI, and RPA”. More on that later, for now, let us go through some of the major highlights for STARWEST Virtual+ 2020.

Key Themes of STARWEST Virtual+

Much of the conversations and content at STARWEST Virtual+ was dominated by themes like continuous testing, test automation, the role of DevOps, utilization of AI & ML in QA, and digital transformation. One of the major learnings (and a very encouraging sign for us) was the overwhelming increase in demand for test automation tools and platforms. Industry experts univocally agreed that test automation was the most effective solution for addressing testing challenges faced by modern-day QA teams.

It is also worth noting that the status of AI and ML in testing has moved from ‘nice-to-have’ to a ‘must-have’ in the bygone year, as more organizations seek the benefits of intelligent test automation to minimize testing time and accelerate time to market.

We were also excited to learn that test and process automation solutions with an umbrella of intelligent features are gaining in popularity. Such solutions are helping organizations transform their process to match the rapid pace of innovation. Towards this, it is worth mentioning that BeatBlip – AgreeYa’s codeless, continuous, and all-in-one test and process automation solution – helps modern test teams address their quality assurance and lifecycle management requirements through its comprehensive range of features.



Key Takeaways from STARWEST Virtual+

#1: Test Automation is Indispensable for Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is a business imperative nowadays, and test automation is enabling organizations to accelerate this transformation. During these uncertain times, organizations are leveraging low-code platforms to build solutions which address their business needs, enable remote teams and produce engaging user experiences through digital channels. However, such applications must meet performance, usability, and reliability goals to satisfy customer expectations and compliance requirements. This is where fully automated continuous testing utilizing artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) powered tools is aiding organizations. It is ensuring quick detection and early resolution of issues to accelerate the innovation cycle.

#2: AI-Powered Codeless Test Automation Solutions are Transforming QA Processes

Test automation is the only viable option to match the fast-paced development requirements of the present times, modern-day products have to undergo constant changes in UI/UX to match the end-user requirements. Test automation delivers an efficient and scalable method to ensure quality in a product undergoing constant changes. Even then, organizations need to spend significant time and effort in test script development and maintenance. As a result, there is a growing demand for intelligent and codeless test automation solutions. Such tools can help organizations to validate their applications more reliably and much faster while requiring minimum test maintenance and efforts.

#3: Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is helping Organizations to Reimagine Test Automation

Blending Robotic Process Automation (RPA) with test automation can yield great outcomes for organizations. While test automation allows you to move beyond the limitations of manual testing, it is still quite time-consuming and effort-intensive. While test automation is transforming the larger test process, the set-up and tear down of testing environments is for many still a manual and time-consuming process. Writing good bug reports complete with screenshots of the issues, videos capturing how to reproduce the bug, log files is an exceptionally tedious process. This is where RPA can make a difference. It can automate the entire testing process, helping you reap the true dividends of test automation. Logically, organizations are interested in adopting a solution that allows automation of the entire testing process rather than steps within it.

#4: Test Automation is Helping Drive ‘Push on Green’

Every organization wants to develop and release software quickly, but there is a valid concern that increasing velocity may decrease quality. There is a simple way to balance both these ends. Deployment and verification are the two most time-consuming activities in the test cycle, due to human elements involvement. To alleviate this bottleneck, many organizations are driving towards the Continuous Delivery process known as Push on Green. As a part of this process, releases are automatically promoted from QA to Production without any human intervention if all automated tests pass in the QA environment. The process needs to be supported by an intelligent and unified test automation solution enabling comprehensive bug detection and easy test creation. When backed by such a solution, Push on Green can reduce the time to develop and release features to production by 27% and deliver a 91% faster resolution time for major production bugs.

#5: Achieve 0/100 and FTT with Test Automation and CI/CD DevOps

Every organization wants “0/100”, or zero defects and 100% first-time-through (FTT) for their releases. While zero defects mean that a product or service will have no defects when it is provided to the customer, 100% FTT means that the in-progress work is successful and resulted bug-free on the first try. To meet such ends, you need a properly constructed CI/CD (Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery) pipeline using one of the popular DevOps platforms. Additionally, you need to adopt a comprehensive test automation solution that empowers testing and QA teams to engage at every step of the software delivery pipeline, from inception and design to delivery, through seamless integration with CI/CD DevOps tools.

AgreeYa Tech Session on “Transforming Test Automation with DevOps, AI, and RPA”

As aforementioned, AgreeYa’s test automation experts – Ramna Sharma and Amit Sikka – delivered a powerful and much-appreciated session during the conference. During this session they discussed how the role of quality assurance and testing is constantly evolving and expanding in the fast-paced world of Agile and DevOps. QA teams have evolved from their traditional roles as the gatekeepers for quality deliverables and are today seen as champions of optimization, collaboration, and transparency across software development lifecycle – driving more direct and greater business value. Consequently, modern test automation tools that support end-to-end automation of both testing, as well as business processes, are serving QA teams best in their new role. Further, during the session, Ramna & Amit focused on some very pertinent areas such as:

  • How AI can make test automation, creation as well as maintenance, smarter and faster
  • How Automation can span beyond applications/systems that integrate test and business processes (E2E integrated automation across diverse touchpoints including Web, Mobile, APIs, Desktop Apps, Database, Packaged Apps, and Batch Processes).
  • How DevOps can leverage the power of automation in the CI/CD pipeline
  • How codeless automation empowers manual testers and BA’s, and speeds up processes with significantly reduced cost of automation/testing
  • How Regression and System Test automation can be re-used for UAT

If you missed meeting us at the conference and would like to know more about BeatBlip, contact us for a free consultation.

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