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Software Functional Testing? Everything you need to know

When you sign the contract with a team to create custom software for you, you hope that your new software will help your business benefit from the new integrations. A more efficient work flow saves you time, money, and headaches.

You expect your custom software to work as promised, right? If it doesn’t, that would be a huge letdown, and you would be disappointed. It would feel like a waste of time and money. 

Luckily, experienced software development companies will utilize software functional testing. This testing checks if the application does what it’s supposed to. It’s quality control that occurs during multiple phases of the development process. It’s also a safety net, so any problems with the software can be fixed before presenting the final product. 

Custom software is a significant investment. Make sure you know what you’re getting, and how to check for any defects.

What Is Software Functional Testing?

Software functional testing is a form of black-box testing. This means that you only worry about what it does. The tester has no idea how the software works to alleviate bias. 

Functional testing doesn’t only happen at the end of development. It can happen at any stage once you have working code to test. However, it is generally done during system and acceptance testing.

This testing is not about performance and reliability. It is about what the user sees and experiences and the business and design requirements of the application.

When designing the test, developers need to carefully plan it to make sure it tests all the moving parts of the code. The developer must use carefully designed test data with known outcomes to do this. 

Manual vs. Automated Functional Testing

You can perform functional testing manually, or you can automate it. Manual testing is expensive because it requires a person to click through the application. Plus, you open the door for spelling mistakes or a tester being unable to properly follow the script. Manual tests can be frustrating, especially when testing a complex application.

Functional testing automation tools make the process easier. In this scenario, tests are performed by a machine using a test script that’s been prepared in advance. These tests are more reliable, but test scripts must be written correctly.

Why Is Functional Testing Important?

Without functional testing, you won’t know if your application meets all the needed requirements. The application may pass other tests easily, but if it simply doesn’t function properly, that’s a real problem. 

Those who are planning the testing need to consider every user journey. This includes ones that are obvious and more obscure. The product team and the test team need to work together to ensure nothing is missed.

5 Steps Of Software Functional Testing

These tests can be complicated, but following these five steps makes managing the experience more accessible.

  1. Take into account the needs and pain points of the end-user. Understand what requirements are needed by the end-user when using this product.
  2. Create the test plan. When writing the test, think about the challenges you might encounter while using the product. What could you do if those issues occurred?
  3. Write test cases. Make test cases that give a “pass” or “fail” result. Organize these results by like tests so you can gather good information when analyzing your outcomes.
  4. Perform tests and measure the results. Compare what really happened to what you expected. Note any defects and rank the problems in order of most to least significant. Keep all results so you can compare future test cases. 
  5. Execute Regression Testing. This tests to see if any new defects have been introduced by modifications made by the development team to fix other problems.

Are There Other Different Types of Software Testing?

Yes, there are many different types of software testing. Functional testing is only one of many. Adequate testing is vital to delivering a high quality product to the client. Here is a look at some of the other types of software testing.

Unit Testing

These low-level tests are close to the application source. Only individual methods, functions, components, or modules used by the software are tested. These tests are cheap, easy to automate, and can be run quickly.

Integration Testing

Integration tests check that different modules or services your application uses work well together. Since these tests need multiple application parts to run simultaneously, they are more expensive.

Acceptance Testing

These tests are done once the entire application is up and running. It makes sure the system meets its business requirements. These tests can be taken further to measure the performance of the system.

End-To-End Tests

When the application is completed, end-to-end tests replicate a user’s behavior. It checks to ensure that various user flows work, such as logging in, loading web pages, verifying email notifications, and processing online payments. 

These tests are helpful but expensive. Most developers use a few key end-to-end tests. They rely primarily on lower-level tests, like unit and integration tests, to identify problems.

Smoke Testing

Smoke tests are basic and inexpensive to run. They check for the basic functionality of the application. Smoke tests are helpful after a new build to check that major systems are working as expected. Once developers have this assurance, they can move on to more expensive and complex tests.

Performance Testing

Performance testing allows developers to test the platform’s stability, reliability, and availability. It tests the system when it’s under significant load. These tests can check for response time when there are many requests or monitor behavior with large amounts of data. These tests are costly but essential to understanding the entire system’s integrity.

The Value Of Software Functional Testing

While there are many different types of software testing, functional testing is invaluable. This type of testing is about the user. It measures if the application will perform as expected — which is what you want it to do.

All software development companies put their applications through rigorous testing. This is the only way to know that they function correctly. When adequate testing is performed, you can be assured that your money has been well spent. Your custom software will help your business to work more efficiently and streamline processes. 

Curious about custom software testing at Moss Rock? Schedule a call with us today to find out more.