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Tech Talks With Laveena Ramchandani: Taking Insights To Maintainable And Scalable Test Automation

24-Mar-2022

Tech Talks With Laveena Ramchandani: Taking Insights To Maintainable And Scalable Test Automation

When it comes to digital transformation, the future is all about automation. Every industry, irrespective of its operations, is aiming to drive the potential of technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, And Robotic Process Automation. Since the roots of Automation are deeply engraved into IT services, driving the true potential of technology requires access to effective software testing services.

Since knowledge is the essence of effective digital transformation, we at BugRaptors constantly work on expanding our network and exploring different perspectives. Taking forward our tradition of networking and connecting with people from the QA industry, this time, our in-house expert, Rajeev Verma interviewed Laveena Ramchandani.

With a highly dynamic and rich experience of almost 10 years, Laveena is working as a Testing & Quality Assurance Lead at EasyJet. Laveena is also a Blogger, Speaker, Trainer, and Host. She is an extremely motivated individual who is working on her objective to become the best Technical and Business Consultant.

She has a Business Computing Degree from Queen Mary University of London and holds a great command of IT as well as the interpersonal aspects of the business world. She brings in huge experience and proficiency in managing operations and QA services for the Retail, Insurance, and Residential sectors. Besides, her core competencies include administration, customer service and support, data migration and testing, as well as sales and retail management.

During the interview, Laveena shared everything about her career journey while highlighting the need for changing QA practices for the better. Besides, the conversation led to all the best practices that are vital to creating maintainable and scalable test automation. Giving an edge of CSR to the interview, Laveena even talked about the gender bias and women in corporate sector very sensitively.

With all that exciting and insightful perspective to explore, let us quickly jump on the interview and dive through the details.

Rajeev Verma: When and how did you get into testing?

Laveena Ramchandani: My journey was a really interesting one, I was the only female in my ICT class, however I decided that I wanted to do a business-related degree after high school. I do not know what I was thinking, but I decided to change my degree to Computer science one week before I started university. I felt that technology is the next big thing. I thoroughly enjoyed my degree and landed my first role as a test analyst back in 2013.

Rajeev Verma: What do you wish you’d have Known Pre-Pandemic to Do a Better Job in Your Role?

Laveena Ramchandani: I wish I knew more about the testing community within the UK and internationally. It is great to see how many testing advocates share so much about testing around the world, whether that’s core skills, testing skills, toolkits, or even their journeys. So much to learn, absorb and apply. I had just attended TestBash by MOT in 2019 for the first time. The vibe was ecstatic. Therefore, I wish I knew more earlier on when I started my career as well as before the pandemic so that I could apply this in my day-to-day job. During and post-pandemic period I got involved very heavily in the community and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Rajeev Verma: What do you think about changing QA practices?

Laveena Ramchandani: I am all positive to drive change. There is so much one can do to shape a QA practice. However, research first, communicate your thoughts, experiment, and strategize. I would suggest making small but positive changes.

  • Coach teams for the new changes
  • Conduct workshops
  • Make sure everyone is on the same boat
  • Have a Quality first mindset
  • Understand how you could utilize what you already have instead of starting from scratch

Rajeev Verma: Can you share some best practices for building maintainable and scalable test automation?

Laveena Ramchandani: In order to produce good, automated tests, know the application being tested.

  • Prioritize scenarios, you can decide in the team what are the useful user flows in your product. Divide your scenarios into high-value and cost-benefit of having it automated. Follow the process stated below to help your team.
  • Select an automation tool that fits your resources & requirements.
  • Have a good code review session, sometimes when developers review the automated tests, they can revert back with some good feedback which may help the engineer for their next test.
  • Make sure tool/ packages are upgraded accordingly too, leaving this too late can make a tester’s task difficult by correcting flaky tests and creates unwanted noise.
  • Try and work with a tool that has a good and open community, so if you have any questions, they can get answered and this way also helps you scale your tests.
  • Make sure your script is written in a way that is reusable code, and can be used for other test cases too.
  • Plan for unexpected events (negative testing).
  • Atomic flows, start by breaking your test code into small chunks and simple tests once all completed, put them all in one scenario and make sure the performance has not changed.
  • Reduce the number of occurrence conditions. In order to ensure the test is predictable and easy to manage, try to avoid if-statements when writing a script.
  • Write isolated scripts. Running self-contained flows improves the quality of parallel testing. As opposed to connected suites, if there’s a hold up with an independent test, the entire session will not be affected.
  • Custom data test attributes- Every test you write will include selectors for elements. To save yourself a lot of headaches, you should write selectors that are resilient to changes.
  • Make sure every test uses a number of scripts and every script is being used by a number of tests to allow automation a long life.

Rajeev Verma: Are there any things you prefer & prepare before starting any tests?

Laveena Ramchandani: Yes always, it’s best to:

  • Check the test environment is stable
  • Validate all your test requirements and test cases
  • Do some pre testing exploratory tests
  • Ask the stakeholders for any blockers
  • Collaborate with testing teams & managers
  • If there is a hotfix make sure to coordinate that

Rajeev Verma: Being a #womenintech do you think gender bias is still there specially in IT organizations?

Laveena Ramchandani: When I started my career I was the only female in my team and that continued to be like that for several years until now. I can say today that within the teams I work I deal more with women than men. This makes me happy! In general, I see more women in tech now, can you relate? I know many women take STEM courses but technology is not as popular, therefore the right guidance and coaching should help more female students become successful within the tech world.

Rajeev Verma: If you were going to write a book, what would it be about?

Laveena Ramchandani: This is a super interesting question and I’d love to write a book. I think I would write about core skills one should carry in their testing suitcase, with personal examples. As tips would help individuals strive in the software testing industry.

Rajeev Verma: Where can we find you online?

Laveena Ramchandani: https://www.linkedin.com/in/laveena-ramchandani-949b8192/

 

Stay connected for more such amazing conversations adding more value to your QA proficiency as well as vision as an individual. 

For more information on quality assurance and software testing, feel free to reach us through info@bugraptors.com  

author

Rajeev Verma

Rajeev works as Project Manager at BugRaptors. He is working on several Web Application , Network Vulnerability assessments, Mobile Application , Secure Network Architecture reviews. He has knowledge in various automated and manual security testing methodologies. He has also frequently coordinated with stakeholders as an on-site resource to assist them in discovering security loopholes and fixing the identified issues.

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