The Importance of Enterprise Software Testing

By Srikanth Chakkilam, 30-Jul-2012

The worldwide software testing outsourcing market is expected to grow from $30 Billion in 2010 to $50 Billion in 2020 and India is expected to be the biggest beneficiary of this growth.

The Importance of Enterprise Software Testing, Srikanth Chakkilam , Vice President, Cigniti Technologies
Enterprises who are traditionally used to third party verification and validation in functions like finance or product quality realized that a similar independence for testing was needed to keep the developers honest and on their toes.
Vice President, Cigniti TechnologiesSrikanth Chakkilam

Enterprise CIOs, CEOs and CFOs have realized the increased risks of bad software on their business. Untested and poor quality software can wreak havoc on Enterprise IT systems bringing down supply chains, sales processes and leading to not only business loss but financial liabilities arising out of court cases. Almost all business process within enterprises including critical ones rely on software. Risks and liabilities of poor quality software for enterprises is rising rapidly.

The recent inability of NASDAQ’s online trading platform to handle a large number of users during the Facebook IPO listing hurt not only Facebook but also NASDAQ. It has led to financial losses for investors and law suits that will cost NASDAQ time, effort and money. Performance testing of the software platform could have identified the defects in time.

Recently a bank in Ireland applied a software patch and released to production without adequate testing which resulted in a two day outage where no transactions could be carried out in the bank. The situation could have been prevented with the right approach to software testing and quality.

For most software applications, testing activities constitute about 40% of the overall effort and 25% of the overall budget. The advent of new technologies like mobile smartphones, cloud computing, tablets means software written once has to be tested in multiple environments to ensure consistent functionality and experience. Testing budgets have become an important element of the overall enterprise IT budget due to technology changes.

Enterprises realized that just like an external auditor is needed to check accounts, an independent tester is needed to check software.

Till the 90s, software testing was done by developers and software adoption within the enterprise was limited. As enterprises started relying on software for critical functions like finance, supply chain and production management, testing emerged as a distinct discipline with its own techniques and tools. With increasing specialization, the industry saw the rise of the professional tester and today more than 100,000 testing professionals in India are helping create quality software.

Enterprises who are traditionally used to third party verification and validation in functions like finance or product quality realized that a similar independence for testing was needed to keep the developers honest and on their toes. Enterprises realized that just like an external auditor is needed to check accounts, an independent tester is needed to check software.

Large enterprise IT departments are choosing independent software testing companies to handle their specialized testing needs. Enterprises IT contracts are being split into development and testing and third party independent testing companies are being contracted to test the software before it is delivered.

Many enterprises need to simulate specialized environments to test their applications like a mobile/device test lab where there are hundreds of mobile devices to check if the application works in all of them. Independent testing services companies are creating specialized test labs for conducting tests without enterprises needing to invest in expensive hardware and software. 

Independent software testing has gained importance over the last 10 years and has rapidly grown to become a large segment within the IT services industry. The worldwide software testing outsourcing market is expected to grow from $30 Billion in 2010 to $50 Billion in 2020 and India is expected to be the biggest beneficiary of this growth according to a NASSCOM report on the testing industry. In 2010 India accounted for only $3.2 Billion of the overall software testing market but is expected to grow to $15 Billion by 2020.

Software testing as a discipline and profession is here to stay and growing very fast. India has one of the world’s largest talent pool of testers and home to premier independent software testing services companies. With software running so many aspects of our life, testers are fighting the good battle against defects to improve the quality of software and thus the quality of life.

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