The first thing to do is to analyze that there are three important areas that need to be included in any test automation process: tools, test environment, and scope; although it is not necessary to do it in this order, because they are related.
In the field of test environments, we need software, licenses, and infrastructure, in addition to a log of executions and parameterization. Therefore, it is necessary to define the test data management strategy and the requirements for continuous testing. In many cases, it is important to keep in mind that to get these sandboxes up and running, we need a lot of data. This is an aspect that cannot be ignored.
With these three fundamentals well established, we can observe some additional steps, such as the identification of the pilot application, the identification of small validation steps, which must be carried out step by step to manage expectations properly, and the automation criteria, which are used to identify the stability of the application in a test state. In this sense, we have to be sure of what will be used and evaluate the application's life cycles; if it will be used for a long time, if it is obsolete or if the test time is acceptable.
In this sense, each organization must define the levels of automation that it will implement, and its level of scales, starting from 0 that corresponds to having no automation, and gradually going through levels 1 to 4. The first level corresponds to a basic level; the second at a more productive level, where we already have a roadmap, defined objectives, and KPIs; the third with a more consolidated automation framework, in which we already work on processes and not just on applications; and a fourth, and last, more advanced, in which we have already introduced artificial intelligence. These levels give a priority reference to guide us and the ideal is to have a detailed scale of priorities. Thus, as we increase coverage by 60-80%, investment starts to decrease. This is an important aspect to consider before starting.
Originally publish (in Portuguese) in Silicon.es