The Pros and Cons of Keyword-driven Testing

The Pros and Cons of Keyword-driven Testing

The Pros and Cons of Keyword-driven TestingSoftware testing methodology Keyword-driven testing or table-driven testing goes for both automated and manual testing. This method separates the test creation process into two distinct stages: a stage of design and development and an execution stage.

When carrying out test automation projects “from scratch”, the development of framework based on the principles of Keyword-driven approach is usually recommended. Simultaneous training will allow your staff to refine and develop a framework covering automated tests by themselves.
As of today Keyword-driven frameworks is the most technologically advanced decision by cost-working hours-effectiveness.

The advantages of such framework include:

  • Maximum code reuse: in fact only one script managing the implementation process is created;
  • The technology does not exclude the application of Data Driven methods, which adds to it all the advantages of Data Driven Approach;
  • All operations are presented in the form of a spreadsheet in Excel or in any other format;
  • All user interface objects are stored in external files;
  • All test cases, and test suites are also described in external files (typically Excel is used), allowing you to manage your startup easily;
  • The framework offers maximum flexibility: you can easily add, delete, edit existing test cases and test suites, and this task does not require any additional qualification, you need only the ability to work with a framework;
  • New operations can be easily added to the system, or existing ones can be easily modified, meanwhile any complex actions are needed, it will be only necessary to write a new function. This makes it easy to extend the framework itself;
  • If it is necessary to switch to a different automation tool, a minimum of code should be conversed. Test cases will remain in the same form.

There are following disadvantages of the framework:

  • In comparison with manual testing it takes longer time to market;
  • Initially it has moderately high learning curve.

The requirements for qualification of specialists, covering the system with autotests, reduce significantly. The skills needed to work with MS Excel will be enough. That’s why for many testing departments this solution can become a panacea.


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2 comments

  1. June 17, 2013 @ 12:21 pm TestingWhiz

    Hey nice post.Thanks for sharing.The keyword driven testing can reduce the cost and time of test design, automation and execution.It also allows non-technical testers and business analysts to write automated tests.

  2. April 13, 2016 @ 9:39 pm Maxvall

    Keyword driven approach may become a worst hell you may imagine if it will be badly designed (you do not see the whole test when debug/fix it and keywords may be implemented by different team members with not so good skills as you wanted them to be). All depends on test subject and it’s complexity. Good keyword-driven framework require very hard work and very strong expertise in automation domain (UI/services/backend etc) to build it right. Always analyze context of testing and think about future extensibility and reusability of keywords/framework etc.
    About costs – all depends on quality of your framework – how good (reliable, flexible, understandable) your code is.
    I’m using now keyword-driven approach (Java, Selenium, TestNG, excel).


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