How to Test Banking Applications With Codeless Selenium

Anna Thorsen

Automation Expert

Most organizations use Selenium to test web-based applications, but in a banking domain, it doesn’t always make sense. 

Banking organizations rely on a complex web of systems across desktops, browsers, mainframe, and mobile. Testing them all with Selenium isn’t possible, since Selenium only works for web testing.

You have:

  • The web server an end-user interacts with via a browser like Chrome or Internet Explorer.
  • The application tier used for validating and processing the webserver input and output.
  • The database tier where information is stored and managed.
  • The transaction processing often carried out by Mainframes for applications dependent on scalability and reliability. E.g. large-scale transaction processing.

So while Selenium can be used to test browser-based processes, teams have to rely on a combination of manual testing, automation frameworks, and automation vendors to regression test their ecosystem end-to-end.

How a major financial institution achieved 8x faster testing

The Dutch insurance branch of a major bank, BNP Paribas, was on a mission to achieve shorter and more frequent product releases (from quarterly to monthly) on their web-based portal.

Testing this system was paramount, as it was a crucial point of contact for the business and had to run perfectly.

But as their product grew, so did their regression testing suite. It quickly grew beyond their means.

The higher workload, without a solution to handle the testing needs, led to more than one close call where the quality of their software and the risk of a core business process faulting was too high. They had to act.

At first, they looked to Selenium to automate their testing but found that it took too much effort to script the tests.

“In terms of coding, we experienced a big skill gap between developers and testers” – Johan Stolk, Senior Test Engineer

The alternative was Leapwork’s Codeless Automation Platform. It was brought in to automatically run regression tests at three stages of their development pipeline, allowing them to keep up with monthly releases and test across more than one environment.

With the introduction of the codeless tool, they were able to reduce their build time to 10 minutes (on average).

They sped up their testing by eight-fold, meaning fewer bugs entered production.

And a test could be executed in 2 minutes, down from hours of manual testing.

Read more about BNP Paribas Agile Development with Automated Testing

Why financial institutions should choose their automated testing solution with caution

An explosion of funding into new FinTech solutions over the past four years is putting increased pressure on traditional banks to modernize their services.

They are expected to…

get applications and features to market faster

flag-circle-icon

reduce the cost and risk of errors

risk mitigation icon

increase their financial return

efficiency

all the while keeping their hiring costs down.

collaboration icon

This weight falls on development teams who are expected to update and release changes to their system faster than before.

  • Their regression suite grows.
  • It becomes impossible to manually regression test with their available resources.
  • Selenium testing takes too much maintenance, and it doesn’t cover non-web-based systems.

Why is this a problem?

If businesses continue using solutions that slow down the release of their services (like code-based test automation tools and manual testing), competitors will continue to eat away at their market share.

The challenges of manual testing, selenium testing, automation frameworks, and mainframe testing in banking

These challenges stop teams from rolling out releases, updates, and system changes at speed.

So what can FI’s do to speed up their testing?

Often, businesses look to automation to relieve the burden that comes with testing, only to find that they are spending more resources and time on maintaining the automation.

This is the case for many businesses relying on code-based frameworks.
It requires a high level of programming knowledge to adopt a functioning solution.

This, of course, keeps business experts from contributing to test automation.

And, it prevents businesses from keeping pace with the competition.

This is where codeless automation comes in.

Benefits of codeless automated testing in banking

No-code automation tools narrow the communication gap between team members. Everyone can create, share and understand automated test cases.

It means businesses can achieve:

Faster release cycles. Leapwork’s visual building blocks make it easier to turn repetitive process steps into reusable components (like login-logout requirements). Change it in one place, and it will update everywhere else. This makes automation easier to manage and maintain. Teams can quickly create complex automation flows across a system, whether it’s on desktop, web, mainframe or mobile, and all in one place.

Lower hiring costs. A visual language, as opposed to coded automation, means that businesses can build automation faster, and test at a higher capacity without adding additional, costly resources. When more people can contribute to automation, a collaboration between QA managers, testers, and developers becomes much easier, and teams can respond quickly to changes in requirements during a release cycle.

A reduction in the cost of errors. Tamper-proof audit logs, built-in compliance features, and video-based reporting and dashboards identify bugs easily and provide the necessary documentation you need to get the error fixed before an update or system change is live.

To learn more about testing at speed in a banking or financial institution, you can read our whitepaper on how no-code test automation drives agile transformation in the Banking, Financial Services, and Insurance (BFSI) sectors.

New call-to-action