The 2018 State of Testing Survey Says ...
November 26, 2018

Bria Grangard
SmartBear

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The results from the latest State of Testing Survey by SmartBear were recently released. Designed to establish benchmarks for the software testing industry regarding the methodologies, practices, and tools used by QA professionals, this second-annual, 45-question survey grabbed more than 2,600 responses from various job roles across 16 major industries globally.

Software over the last two decades has revolutionized the way we live. From flip phones and floppy disks, to 3D-video games, pacemakers, and the birth of artificial intelligence-based devices like Alexa, technology has advanced at an unimaginable rate. The rise in what software can accomplish has correlated with a boom in technological dependency. With software having seeped into almost every aspect of day-to-day life, the value and importance of software development and testing has skyrocketed.

The spectrum of practices and tools available to QA professionals is just as broad as the products and tools available in the market — and the goal of this survey was to better understand what is going on in the software testing world today. Here are some of the highlights:

The industry reliance on API testing is growing

This year, 80 percent of respondents reported testing some kind of API or web service, up from 71 percent in 2017. API consumption has skyrocketed over the past few years, a growth that is not surprising and will continue. As the connective-tissue of application development, APIs are the key to connecting the vast network of systems, platforms, and apps that make up the Internet of Things (IoT). To ensure a flawless user experience, it is crucial to test APIs within the context of their consumption across multiple browsers, devices, and resolutions.

The role of testing continues to expand beyond the traditional tester

With the importance of testing having grown exponentially in recent years, the survey audience spends more than 40 percent of their week testing with QA engineers spending 75 percent of their time at it. Developers reported spending 40 percent of their week testing, proving that teams are indeed shifting left.

Automation is not growing as fast as we might expect

It's been widely acknowledged across the industry that automated testing is essential for teams looking to adopt more iterative development cycles and to release faster. But while it feels that automation is picking up steam, it's not growing as quickly as the industry might expect. The use of automated API testing grew from 49 percent in 2017 to 54 percent in 2018.

API testing is increasing

API testing is increasing with third party API usage having grown by more than double in the last year. The breakdown of types of APIs tested has drastically shifted year-over year. More developers and testers are testing third party and external facing APIs, rather than just the internal APIs that make their application functional in a SOA or Microservice Architecture. Using third party APIs for testing can be notoriously expensive and difficult, as API providers can charge teams each time they use the API.

One quarter of teams are releasing software at least once per day or multiple times per day

Fifteen percent of respondents reported releasing multiple times a day, as compared to 6 percent in 2017. A higher percentage of individuals also reported releasing on a daily and weekly basis in 2018 than in 2017.

The survey is filled with many key insights including emerging trends and year-over-year analysis of what teams are doing, and what teams globally are thinking the future of testing will hold. Discover more of what your peers are doing today in testing.

Bria Grangard is Product Marketing Manager at SmartBear
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