Automation is a Product. YOUR Product.

Although automation is made of code, there’s a difference in how it’s treated, when compared to “real code” is treated.

“Real code” is the stuff written by your company, that’s meant for your users. The people who pay you money for your product. That stuff.

But if you think about it… automation code has users. And, while those users may not be paying you money for your code (because they work in your company already), they’re getting a benefit from it.

So why do some places not seem to treat automation like an internal product? Why do some companies flounder with their automation, or treat it like a necessary evil so they can focus on the fun, revenue-generating stuff?

Maybe it’s because of some historical mindsets that we’re battling with today.

Is your automation effort feeling less like being “in step” with everything else going on, or does it feel like it’s being stapled on?

Is as much attention being given to architecture, maintenance and refactoring of the automation, or does it constantly have to be fooled with just to keep things running?

Is a certain group of people dedicated to providing it, or is it done by whoever’s available?

What if your company treated automation as an internal product?

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One thought on “Automation is a Product. YOUR Product.

  1. Automation and its code is internal software, it is Testware. Just like an internal HR or Accounting system for a company the Automation and all it artifacts are assets to be used by internal staff. And as you noted in a lot of cases the internal software isn’t treated the same as the software (external) going out the door. This is where the Test group needs to explain, educate and SELL people on the fact the automation is valuable and is beneficial to the company. The key thing to realize is that Automation is a Soft Dollar Impact. Meaning you don’t make money off of it, but that it helps in the process of making money. By helping to improve the efficiency of the software testing it means there is a chance to add value to the reliability of the software going out the door, which in turn can have Hard Dollar results. Thus it would be beneficial and create a positive feedback by treating your Automation effort as a first class development project. But what the hell do I know, I’m just a Tester.

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