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“All I ever wanted from HP was a viable test automation tool”


HP and Mercury Interactive before them were very successful at selling a complete package of testing tools, including performance testing and test management, but the jewel in the crown, the juicy bait covering the pointed and costly hook, was QTP – a product that offered the promise of easy functional test automation.

If you speak now to many of the companies who made the investment the reality is somewhat different.

Performance-critical applications are typically web based which has radically simplified the task of load testing and the HP solution was left looking over-specified and very expensive. Besides many companies have taken the logical step to dispense with these tools  and associated costly in-house skills and use an outsourced solution when needed.

The test management tool has had many names from Test Director through Quality Center  and now to ALM/Octane under the Micro Focus banner, and while the functionality has only expanded slowly and its user interface is from the last century, it does covers most test management tasks. It may be a step up from a spreadsheet but it can never deliver the ROI to justify the investment.

The ROI was always based on automated functional testing. So what happened?

QTP takes a coded approach to test automation which means it is slow to build and is incredibly fragile when the application under test changes. Well that’s a problem isn’t it. The very applications which would benefit from an automated approach to testing are those which frequently change. Old-fashioned coded automation can never survive in today’s faster moving world and many, many customers have consigned the tools to the shelf.

It appears HP thought, like IBM before them, that the problem was in the name and re-branded QTP as UFT but it made no difference.

But if you still believe in the benefits of test automation, if only it could be made to work, let’s have a chat. There is a better way


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