What is Testing as a Service (TaaS Model) in Software Testing?

Software TestingAutomation TestingTesting Tools

TaaS is an outsourcing model or framework, in which a third-party service provider executes the software testing, in place of the employees of the organization. In TaaS, the service provider performs the testing that is specialized in simulating real-world test environments and detecting bugs in the software.

Software testing is an important part for the IT organizations that develop and maintain software. It ensures the functionalities of the releases and the quality and performance demand of the clients. Moreover, the IT organizations may test and audit their cloud infrastructure and environment to assess performance (both operational and business) and security. Those organizations that demand testing beyond their capabilities, TaaS provides a new approach to outsource various types of testing, demanded in today’s IT world.

The third-party service providers that perform the testing exploit their web interface, test infrastructure, and automation capabilities to assist developers develop new products faster and with lesser defects. TaaS is a beneficial option for specialized testing that do not demand an in-depth knowledge of the system. Best suitable TaaS services include automated regression testing, performance testing, security testing, applicant testing, cloudbased applications testing, etc.

When to use TaaS

  • When the organization does not have the skills or resources to perform testing internally.

  • When we do not want the organization developers to affect the results of the testing process.

  • To reduce costs.

  • To speed up test process and reduce development time.

  • To test software that need extensive automation and with short test execution cycle.

  • For irregular testing that needs extensive resources.

Types of TaaS

  • Functional testing − This includes UI/GUI testing, regression testing, integration testing, and automated UAT (User Acceptance Testing). It is not necessarily a part of functional testing.

  • Performance testing − Many users may try to access the software simultaneously. TaaS imitates the real-world environment through virtual users and performing load and stress tests.

  • Security testing − TaaS scans the software and websites to detect vulnerabilities.

  • Cloud testing − This involves testing the cloud services used by the organization, such as SaaS (Software as a Service) applications.

  • Application testing − This includes testing the application being developed by the organization.

  • Regression testing − This involves testing new software features to ensure that they do not affect the existing feature.

  • QA (Quality Assurance) testing − This includes the service provider assisting the organization to ensure that the software product meets the specified goals before it is released.

  • Penetration testing − In this, the vendor tests the security fortitude of the organization against cyber threats by mimicking attacks.

  • Load testing − In this, the vendor or the service provider tests the estimated usage volume of a piece of the software under test.

  • Unit testing − This includes the testing of specific pieces of code. Usually, the code that is suspected to be weak is tested first.

  • GUI testing − This involves the testing and evaluation of the user-side of the software under test.

  • Disaster recovery testing − In this, the service provider tests the capability of the organization to respond and recover from an outage.

  • SLA (Service-level Agreement) adherence − This involves the testing of a SaaS (Software as a Service) application for adherence to the SLA.

Working of TaaS

IT companies or organizations who hire a service provider to test procedures which otherwise would traditionally be performed in-house, are the primary users of TaaS. These organizations buy test tools, test software and infrastructure from providers. It may be one piece of the testing process, for instance a platform, an integration of software and infrastructure, the outsourcing of an entire department, etc. TaaS involves a provider that takes some part of the testing responsibilities of the organization or company.

TaaS can be used for automated testing which would manually need longer time for in house staff to perform. It is also used in other cases, such as when the customers do not have the resources to carry out the testing on their own. For example, time, money, staff, technology, etc. It is not a good choice for organizations that need in-depth knowledge of the system’s infrastructure.

There are various types of TaaS according to their own specific procedures. Generally, TaaS operates as follows −

  • First, a scenario and test environment are created. In software testing, it may be referred to as user scenario.

  • Then, the test cases are designed to determine and evaluate the response and behaviour of the organization to that scenario.

  • The test cases are run in a secured test environment, provided by vendor.

  • The vendor tracks and monitors the performance and determines the capabilities of the organization to meet goals laid out in the test design.

  • Together, the vendor and company work towards improving the software product under test to improve future performance and results.

Key features of TaaS

  • It is a self-service portal to run software for functional and load testing.

  • It tests library with complete security controls, thus saving all test assets available to the end users.

  • It fully exploits hardware; the sharing of cloud hardware resource pool is enabled while following all the security policies.

  • The on-demand availability for complete test labs involves the ability to set up complex multi-layer software, test scripts, and test tools.

  • It makes sure that no bottleneck goes undiscovered and all the problems for the software under test are solved by monitoring or tracking it.

  • The metering capabilities enable tracking and charging the services used by clients.

  • It includes a SaaS portal to run tests and access test data.

  • It includes on-demand test labs, application diagnostics and enables monitor the software under test.

  • The hardware is shared to reduce resource contention.

Software Testing as a Service over Cloud

After creating user scenarios, the test cases are designed, and the service providers deliver the servers in order to create virtual traffic.

Software testing in Cloud is done in the following steps

  • Develop user scenarios.

  • Design the test.

  • Select a cloud service provider.

  • Establish infrastructure.

  • Exploit cloud service.

  • Begin the testing.

  • Monitor and track the goals.

  • Deliver.

Traditional Services Vs TaaS

ApproachTraditional ServicesTaaS
Test EnvironmentCreated manuallyCreated on-demand
Test AssetsGenerated manuallyDynamic
Test DataGenerated manuallyDynamically sanitized
Test ToolsPurchased manuallyOn-demand
Test DocumentationGenerated manuallyGenerated dynamically
Business Domain KnowledgeExtracted manuallyDynamically extracted

Advantages of Cloud Testing

  • It is executed with flexibility.

  • The test cases are also flexible.

  • Savings in the cloud testing have been found to be 40-60% more than the traditional testing.

  • It enables achieving a faster return upon investments by removing the investment done after hardware procurement, management and maintenance, and software licensing.

  • It helps deliver software products quickly through rapid procurement, project set-up, and execution.

  • It provides data integrity and accessibility, anytime and anywhere.

  • It helps cut operational and maintenance costs, and investments.

  • It has a pay-as-you-use basis.

TaaS Use Cases

The primary reasons to use TaaS are −

  • For quick, one-off tests or special tests beyond the ordinary routine.

  • Requirement for unbiased testers with minimum business domain knowledge.

  • Absence of skilled personnel or resources required for testing.

  • To include repetitive and easy tasks, which otherwise would be time consuming for in-house staffs.

  • To avoid additional infrastructure costs.

A company may hire a service provider to test their disaster recovery plan. DRaaS (Disaster Recovery as a Service) service providers provide DR testing as well. Often, companies overlook disaster recovery testing as it does not directly add to revenue, and the companies are usually busy in dealing with other issues, e.g., increasing data volumes, complex IT environments, etc.

An organization may hire a service provider for the penetration testing of their network. the provider enables automated testing through a SaaS model that enables the end users to view the test data in real-time, unlike in traditional methods in which the test results can only be viewed after the conclusion of the process.

An organization may use an on-demand workforce, for example Amazon Mechanical Turk (AMT), to digitally crowd source the feedback on the software’s usability, design and performance. The organization can post some easy tasks that the Amazon Mechanical Turk providers select and complete for a small payment. AMT is useful in in drawing from a very large pool of providers that provide feedback and real human interactions with an organization’s software.

TaaS Providers and Products

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) − AWS offers native Quality Assurance (QA) tools and a market to select from a wide range of third-party testing tools.

  • LoadStorm − It offers cloud-based load testing for mobile and web applications.

  • Neustar − It provides do-it-on-your-own QA tools that help software developers to test traffic capacity before the software product is released, so as to remove bottlenecks.

  • Oracle − It provides automated testing, load testing, and functional testing services.

  • Qualitest − It is used for performance testing, security testing, mobile testing, and test automation.

Types of testing outsourced with TaaS

Organizations can select many kinds of functional and non-functional testing activities to outsource to TaaS providers, which includes −

  • Automated Regression testing (ART) − It is usually performed after a software update is released. The new release runs through a battery of automated unit and integration test cases to determine whether the code compiles correctly after a new update or not. It runs through a test suite that contains all the vital functional tests for the software, and tests for external services that support the software.

  • Application Security Testing (AST) − Its main objective is to identify vulnerabilities and attack vectors that can be exposed in a cyber-attack. TaaS service providers use their own security analysis tools for assessing the vulnerabilities of the software product, and to make recommendations to minimize correcting and perceived security flaws.

  • Data Warehouse Testing − When developers develop a data warehouse that contains millions of lines of data, it is impossible to manually verify data quality and transformation accuracy because of the time constraints and massive volume of data. Service providers create automated tests to determine data integrity, transformation accuracy and data quality.

  • Mobile Testing − Users are increasingly assessing applications and websites through mobile devices, thus increasing the importance of delivering a high-quality, seamless software performance across devices, OS (Operating Systems) and web browsers. Mobile testing services enable enhancing the performance of the software across various platforms and help ensure that it can handle the expected volume of mobile connections.

  • Server load and Performance testing − Performance testing services involve analysing user scenarios and transactions in a simulated production environment. TaaS service providers execute the simulations with the use of predefined number of transactions, users, and views to evaluate the performance of the software when it is subjected to various server loads and conditions.

Summary

TaaS is an outsourcing model in which the software testing is performed by a third-party service provider. An organization uses TaaS when it does not have sufficient skills or resources to carry out the testing internally. It helps in achieving a faster return of investments by removing the investment done after the procurement of hardware, management and maintenance, software licensing, etc.

raja
Published on 27-Sep-2021 06:38:11
Advertisements