Many companies experience common problems associated with automated testing which slow the transition to a new testing approach and extend the process to more than a year. According to data from the educational platform WebinarCare, this was the case for 15% of organizations this year while 9% of test automation projects completely failed. What are the key points and possible issues organizations should consider for the successful adoption of automated testing, and how do they relate to Microsoft Dynamics 365 automation? For more details, read this article.
A single module of Microsoft Dynamics 365 is already a pretty advanced piece of software with numerous integrations, powerful features, and constant updates released by the Microsoft team. This makes test automation quite a challenge while automating multiple Dynamics 365 modules, let alone the entire ERP and CRM software suite, can be quite a daunting task.
Moreover, if a company decides to customize Microsoft Dynamics 365 during the implementation phase or later, the test automation project becomes even more complicated. Customizations can significantly change the original product and require a unique approach to Dynamics 365 automation testing.
Inappropriate Choice of Software for Dynamics 365 Automation
Choosing an adequate tool for test automation is another major concern. The range of testing solutions on the market is constantly growing, offering users more and more options, to select from while making it increasingly difficult to make the right choice.
The variety of test automation products includes open-source frameworks like Selenium that require advanced programming skills to set up the environment and automate tests, no-code solutions like Executive Automats that democratize testing and make it accessible to users without deep technical knowledge, specialized Microsoft tools like RSAT, and others.
To decide on a particular tool, organizations need to consider numerous factors, including their budget, the type of testing, the testing objectives, and the level of testing expertise of their testers. Plans for using the same solution to test other software should also be considered.
Test automation comes with a cost, even if you choose an open-source framework or the RSAT tool available to companies that have implemented Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management modules for free.
In the case of such solutions, companies have to cover hidden expenses, such as the cost of setting up the test environment and developing additional functionality required for successful automation. The time companies spend on these preparations, as well as the cost of developers’ work, contribute to the overall price of test automation.
At the same time, companies that opt for out-of-the-box solutions such as Executive Automats, which provide automated testing after a simple installation process, have to pay licensing fees. Despite licensing fees, such tools often help companies save enough money by ensuring faster automation adoption and reducing the need for supervision by professional programmers, ultimately leading to higher and faster ROI. Still, it is a matter of concern whether a company can afford such a tool in the first place.
Performance testing is one of the most complex tasks for manual testing because it requires simulating interactions between a system and a large number of concurrent users. Without automating performance testing in Dynamics 365, it is quite difficult to achieve accurate results. However, the number of tools designed for this task is rather modest. Moreover, most solutions on the market are severely limited in terms of the number of concurrent users that can be simulated. Executive Automats is a real exception, as it allows testers to simulate a large number of concurrent users, sufficient for thorough performance testing.
Data Management Difficulties
Managing the data used for testing is itself a challenging task. To validate the correctness of the work of such an advanced system as Microsoft Dynamics 365, testers need to replicate realistic data scenarios, otherwise, real-world usage will not be accurately depicted and test results will not be representative and usable.
This inevitably leads to the need to handle complex data structures and large data sets, while also requiring companies to ensure data privacy compliance.
Tips for Overcoming Key Dynamics 365 Automation Issues
Below are some useful recommendations that can help you address some of the issues associated with Microsoft Dynamics 365 test automation:
- Refrain from customizing tested software whenever possible to make test automation less challenging;
- Conduct a thorough assessment of your organization’s financial and technical capabilities and set clear and measurable goals before choosing any testing solution;
- Select testing software that requires as little supervision from developers as possible;
- Try to gradually increase your testing scope by starting with automating small, repetitive tasks before moving on to more advanced scenarios;
- To get a handle on the complexity of Microsoft Dynamics 365, break your application into smaller components for testing and identify those that should be prioritized;
- Create reusable data scripts to simplify data management and maintenance of your tests, and take the time to review your test scripts to ensure there are no redundancies that can increase maintenance costs;
- Do not neglect manual testing completely, as even the most advanced testing applications cannot deal with some testing tasks, including validating user experience and application usability.
Test automation has great potential to optimize the testing routine in organizations using Microsoft Dynamics 365. However, implementing a test automation tool requires thorough planning and consideration of automation vulnerabilities that can impact your project. Financial challenges, difficulties with test and data management, and a poor choice of a testing tool are some of the common problems.