Hexaware shares calculator for test automation costs

IT service provider says the tool for measuring the trade-off between up-front investment and long-term savings is the first of its kind.

Hexaware, the India-based IT service provider, has created an online calculator that estimates the return on investment (RoI) in test automation. The calculator is based on the costs of Hexaware’s Integrated Design2Execution (ID2E) testing framework.

The calculator, which can be found on Hexaware’s website here, allows users to estimate savings that can be achieved by automating their testing by entering their own variables: the degree of existing automation, the type of applications being tested and the number of regression test cases required.

The calculator’s final input field is the project location. Users can choose either India or the rest of the world. This affects RoI, as there is less of a return on investment from automating Indian testers than more expensive European and US-based testers.

The calculator displays a graph that displays estimated savings as well as after how many release cycles the customer can reach the break-even-point (see chart example below, where the red line shows costs with the testing framework and the green line shows costs without automation).

calculator

Vinod Ghorpade, European head of digital assurance at Hexaware, said he believes this is the first calculator of its kind that embraces automation across test design, execution and reporting. Although the calculator is based on the out-of-the box functionality of ID2E, Ghorpade said that it can generally be applied to other design, test, and reporting automation projects.  

Nagendra BS, Hexaware’s head of solutions, said the assumptions that underlie the calculator’s formula are based on previous projects.  “The metrics we use come from our real-world experiences of test-automation,” said Nagendra,  “The calculator has a drop-down menu where the user can specify what kind of application they want to automate testing for: mainframe, database, user interface, and so on. The final result is based on what kind of returns we’ve seen our customers get on those projects.”

In order to avoid redundant test cases, the final figure assumes optimisation of extra, unnecessary test cases.  “Our calculator assumes a 8-10% test case duplication rate,” said Nagendra, “And that is based on our real world experience. This assures that the calculator only takes optimal test cases into account when calculating test execution efficiency.”  

The baseline, pre-ID2E test automation rate, is also taken into account. This figure can range from anywhere between 0% automation to over 60%. “I would say 40% is a standard figure,” said Nagendra. ”In our experience, automation rates are not industry-dependent. It’s more about a firm’s technology stack and how many resources they are putting into quality assurance.”

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