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Michael Fadhl
QA Automation Engineer at XPO Logistics
Real User
Highly customizable and the best tool out there to do automated testing
Pros and Cons
  • "Its biggest advantage is that it is very customizable."
  • "We use X path for our selectors, and sometimes, it is difficult to create locators for elements. It is very time-consuming because they're embedded deeply. A lot of that comes from the way that you architect your page. If devs are putting the IDs on their elements, it is great, and it allows you to get those elements super fast, but that's not necessarily the case. So, Selenium should be able to get your elements a lot quicker. Currently, it is time-consuming to get your selectors, locate your locators, and get to the elements."

What is our primary use case?

We basically use Selenium for smoke testing and regression testing. We don't use it much for functional testing because you can easily and manually use a bunch of tests and make them a Zephyr. We use Zephyr as our test case management tool, which is a kind of a plugin for JIRA. So, we create our test cases in Zephyr, and then they are tagged to be automated. After that, we put them into our regression suite. Each team has its own independent regression suite. Currently, my team has a couple hundred, but I know some teams have 500 or 600 in their suite. We also have a suite of smoke tests that we run through Selenium.

All the code is on-prem. We're currently just running the tests through the Jenkins pipeline, but we want to be able to run them in parallel in the cloud and a lot quicker. We are not quite there yet. 

How has it helped my organization?

When we execute our smoke test, we're able to perform them really quickly with Selenium. Currently, in our project, we have 12 smoke tests. If I have to run them sequentially, it is going to take half an hour. If I run them in parallel, each one of them takes less than two and a half minutes. So, I could do smoke tests in under three minutes and get feedback right away about whether everything is up and running. We do production deployments throughout the week, but we try to do our main deployments on Sunday. Sunday is not the best working day, but because it is a weekend, we can get our work done. We want to be able to perform these tests quickly. The same is applicable to our pre-prod environment. We can run our smoke test right away, and it will be able to tell us that all the dependencies for our applications are up and running. As compared to doing it manually, which can take a few hours, it is really quick. 

It saves time for regression testing. It takes about three people to do the regression testing manually for probably two or three hours, whereas you can do it a lot quicker if you can get them in parallel. So, you can get quick feedback about whether your application is up and running right away. You don't want to go down the road where you find a problem after four or five hours. You want to find it out as quickly as possible.

What is most valuable?

Its biggest advantage is that it is very customizable.

It saves time and enables us to execute our smoke test and regression tests really quickly.

What needs improvement?

We have a lot of inheritance going here. I've been doing it for so long, so it is pretty straightforward for me, but you have to know Java to be able to work in our framework. I know some people use Python, but you have to know Java. That's kind of the hardest thing when you're doing interviews. People just don't know Java. This is where probably Worksoft has an advantage because it is codeless. So basically, you are just pointing, clicking, and providing things like Excel spreadsheets for your test data. In that sense, if you are using Worksoft, it is a lot easier to train or onboard somebody.

We use X path for our selectors, and sometimes, it is difficult to create locators for elements. It is very time-consuming because they're embedded deeply. A lot of that comes from the way that you architect your page. If devs are putting the IDs on their elements, it is great, and it allows you to get those elements super fast, but that's not necessarily the case. So, Selenium should be able to get your elements a lot quicker. Currently, it is time-consuming to get your selectors, locate your locators, and get to the elements. You have to find the element on the page, and then you have to go to the page and the console. In the console, you can put the next path in there to locate the element manually in the JavaScript to say that this one will work, and let's use this because we'll put a string of that element. After that, we get the element based on that stream. That's probably the most time-consuming part of that. It is dependent on how well you've designed the front-end UI. We use something called Data Tests attribute through which we can locate elements super fast. If people consistently use those, that's great, but a lot of times when they go in there to fix some bugs, they're not consistent in doing that. They usually just find a way to locate the element and change that in the code. If you change something, then your code or your test is going to fail because the locator has changed the element, and you can't get it anymore. You have to manage a way to get it. So, when you're running your suite of tests and you see some failures, it takes some research to find out why did this paneling go, and then you find out that it happened because of the frontend change. Someone removed this element and changed it, and you have to change your locator, which is very time-consuming. It is kind of like a false belt. It is failing, but it is not. It is only failing because of your locator. It is not failing because the app is not functioning correctly. It is a kind of false failure. Sorting the elements quicker would be a big thing with Selenium.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for eight years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have a dozen teams at our company, and each one of them is independent. We give them a pretty extensive Selenium framework, and then they basically start building based on that architecture and create their test cases and page objects.

In terms of its usage, Selenium is our testing framework. We use Jenkins to perform our test cases. A lot of them are done through a pipeline, and a lot of them are queued on to run automatically. There are triggers in there to run something every day at 9:00 AM. We don't have to manually say that we want to test this aspect of our page. 

The excellence team now has four people, and that's just the team that manages the framework. There are 25 people who can do test automation. They do manual tests and automation. They use the same framework, and if they find some issues, they'll ask us. If they're constantly having to do a certain function and having to write the Selenium code for it, they will ask us to do that. We might create a tool inside the framework to make their life quicker. We can put it inside the common Selenium framework so that it is always available to everybody.

How are customer service and technical support?

Selenium is an open-source solution. If you have a problem, you can pretty much Google something and figure out a solution for it. There are so many people who are using it, and there is a lot of material that is available out there for you to troubleshoot any kind of problems.

You don't usually directly go to the open-source code. I don't visit it at all nowadays. In the beginning, I did do it a lot, but not so much now. We're now in a state where we are just executing test cases and creating new ones. It does everything we need and meets our needs.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

It has been Selenium for me from the get-go. I've been here at XPO for almost five years. Before that, I was more of a contractor, and I did a couple of contracts. When I went to a healthcare company, they really didn't have a great framework. So, I started one, but I doubt that they're still using it. That's because it requires a lot of knowledge to be able to create a framework.

It is something that I've been always using. I've done some research on some other tools to be able to do things, but I always come back to Selenium. 

We're an angular-based house, and all our pages are in angular. There are some other products that run on top of JavaScript besides Selenium. There are quite a few people out there who are using Protractor, which is an end-to-end type of test framework, but it works specifically for angular applications. We have never gone down that path. We just stuck with Selenium.

How was the initial setup?

When I first came here, the framework was in place, but it was more basic. There is a team of three guys here, and we're all pretty smart. We're the excellence team for the framework. We've done a lot to make it a lot simpler for us to create our test cases. Three people probably worked 25% of the time for a few years on it. So, a lot of time was invested into the framework, and it has come a long way. It is much more sophisticated now.

Maintaining the architecture and Selenium framework for testing requires work. It is an ongoing kind of process. We're constantly maintaining it and updating it.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

It is all free.

What other advice do I have?

Each product has its own pros and cons. It is very customizable, but then you have to have a lot of knowledge about Java or an object-oriented programming language that works with it. They keep creating frameworks to make your life easier, and it is a very customizable framework, but you have to have the knowledge to be able to do it. There are other tools out there, such as Worksoft, for which you don't have to know Java.

If you're starting from scratch, it would be good to get a good Java developer and make him or her get everybody up and going. That Java developer can train junior test automation people. You should hold on to that person for as long as you can. Getting a good Java person is probably critical when you're creating your Selenium framework.

It is not the easiest thing because it is hard to get a quality assurance resource that is knowledgeable about Java. So, it is very difficult to get a good framework in place. Usually what happens is that you'll get QA people who start doing QA, and then they start doing test automation. Once their skills get up there in Java where they're decent, they move over to being a software developer. So, they get out of the QA world, and they go over to be a developer. So, you lose that talent. You had to do your framework, and now they're gone. Maintaining good talent is difficult. It is hard enough to maintain the Selenium framework, and when you start losing people, it makes it harder. The next person comes in line, and it is just a revolving door. 

I would rate Selenium HQ an eight out of 10 because it is not perfect, but it is the best tool out there to do automated testing.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Srinivas Boyapati
Manager QA at a tech vendor with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Supports SAP functional testing and recognizes SAP objects in GUI mode
Pros and Cons
  • "A good automation tool that supports SAP functional testing."
  • "Could be more user-friendly on the installation and configuration side."

What is our primary use case?

We are customers of Silk Test and I'm the IT QA manager

What is most valuable?

This is a good automation tool that supports SAP functional testing. It recognizes SAP objects in the GUI mode which is a valuable feature. 

What needs improvement?

The initial setup is somewhat complex if you're deploying on-prem. It means we have to set up a database and application client machines, as well as Silk Meter which manages the licenses. It could be more user-friendly on the installation and configuration side.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using this solution for three years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is scalable because it has a lot of other capabilities as well, which I haven't used. It is perfectly good for other web applications. On the Salesforce side, I do have a requirement but I am yet to explore how much Silk Test supports automating Salesforce. There are five people in my team who use this solution. 

How are customer service and support?

The technical support is very good. There is an online support portal available from Micro-Focus, the parent company. They are good and we get nice SLAs for any of the queries or incidents or any issues we face.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was somewhat complex. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

When compared with other tools the licensing costs are reasonable and similar to solutions such as Micro-Focus and SAP's Solution Manager, as well as Worksoft which is another market leader in SAP automation. 

What other advice do I have?

The solution is user-friendly with respect to automation. A novice user can use this application with some basic training of a week or so. It doesn't take much more than that to learn and implement.

I rate the solution eight out of 10. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Get our free report covering Tricentis, SeleniumHQ, Micro Focus, and other competitors of Worksoft Certify. Updated: January 2022.
563,208 professionals have used our research since 2012.