Who is the Company

An athletic apparel retailer.

The Challenge

The company used Travis CI as its continuous integration (CI) tool. Given the limitations of Travis, the automation team’s intervention was needed to execute any of the available automation suites manually. The automation team’s turnaround time became a significant factor for consideration before committing to a delivery timeline.

The company also faced significant issues with its current test data automation. In the existing system, almost 90% of frontend automation tests failed due to inventory issues in downstream systems. The test team used hard-coded test data to counterbalance faulty test data, which led to an additional manual effort in executing automation scripts.

In brief, the company was looking to:

  • Migrate to a better CI tool: The company was looking to migrate to a tool with better automation capabilities.
  • Reduce test failures: The 90% failure rate was utterly unacceptable, which made the entire test process useless.
  • Decrease wasted engineering time: Despite having automated test suites, the frequent need to have test automation engineers intercede was a drain on company resources.

    The Solution

    After reviewing the company’s requirements, our Quality Engineering team suggested moving to Jenkins, an open-source automation server used to automate the various stages of the software development process, including building, testing, and deployment.

    Our team built an intuitive parameterized pipeline using the ‘Jenkinsfile’ declarative syntax. We defined parameters for every possible execution combination of browsers, platforms, locations, test suites, and environments.

    The company can now perform a ‘one-stop’ selection of required parameters and hit ‘Build’ to execute in the selected configuration. Email reports and logs are sent to Outlook, a Microsoft Teams channel, and Test Rail.

    To address test data automation issues, our engineers liaised with the relevant teams to devise the solution. We significantly alleviated the problem by adjusting inventory for the selected products in downstream systems as part of the pipeline before triggering automation script.

    Here are some key solution highlights:

    • Highly transparent result validation: The test results are sent along with logs to the relevant stakeholders according to parameter selections.
    • Extensible pipeline: A flexible ‘Jenkinsfile’ declarative pipeline was built and is continuously maintained.
    • Readily scalable: Additional features can be easily added as new company requirements arise.
    • Streamlined automation execution: The new system features a configurable one-click build process, making test runs vastly easier.
    • Minimal cross-team dependencies: Automation leverage has increased exponentially by eliminating the previous reliance on automation teams.

    Business Impact

    • Less wasted time: The manual testing teams can directly trigger execution on Jenkins shared services without any dependency on the automation team. This allows skilled automation engineering resources to concentrate on more critical tasks. 
    • 83% drop in the test failure rate: With the new system, only 7% of the scripts fail due to test data issues, which is an incredible improvement against the previous failure rate of 90%.
    • Greater confidence in test results: Since automation results in the new system are more reliable than in the old one, the company now has greater confidence in its tests.
    • Faster time-to-market: Improvements in test automation led to speedier testing turnaround time. This, in turn, results in faster time-to-market for new releases.

    Technologies Used

    Jenkins Shared Services
    Test Rail

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