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The Role of Automation Testing in Continuous Integration and Delivery

In today's ever-changing world, one of the most complex challenges for software organizations is responding swiftly to customer and market requirements. And the CI/CD technique emerged as the critical solution to such a challenge.

In today's ever-changing world, one of the most complex challenges for software organizations is responding swiftly to customer and market requirements. And the CI/CD technique emerged as the critical solution to such a challenge. 

CI/CD is an approach that allows you to swiftly integrate new code into an application while minimizing errors with the help of automation testing. Automation testing helps to ensure the new code change is thoroughly tested before it is released to production. 

Pioneered by Gary Booch, CI/CD was first introduced as one of the key practices of Extreme Programming.  

Let's break down these two terms to get a clear understanding. 

What are Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery? 

Continuous Integration (CI) ensures that software components communicate with one another. Integration should be done on a regular basis, preferably on an hourly or daily basis. 

Continuous Delivery (CD) comes into the picture where Continuous Integration (CI) ends. Whereas CI is the process of automatically building and testing, CD is the process of deploying all code changes in a build to the testing or staging environment. 

Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) is a methodology that emerged from a cultural shift that bridged the gap between Developers, Testers, and Operations through DevOps. The approach emphasizes developers continuously integrating their work, followed by testers rigorously testing it so that operations teams can release products and upgrades more frequently. 

What is CI/CD Pipeline? 

Several software development teams aim to create a CI/CD pipeline to optimize their process as they attempt to meet the increasing demand for quicker release cycles and higher software quality. In simple terms, teams can upgrade their software on-demand to adapt to user feedback, market developments, and any revisions to the larger business strategy by implementing CI/CD pipeline. 

Although the CI/CD pipeline has no set structure, it is commonly divided into the following stages: 

Commit & Build  

After finishing up their modifications to an application, developers commit their code to a central repository, which then integrates their snippet with the main code base. The software component or new feature is then created from the extracted code and put through unit testing. By automating each step once the code is developed, continuous integration (CI) plays a crucial role in speeding this procedure. 

Automation Testing 

After the new software is created, it needs to be extensively tested to ensure it satisfies all the initial requirements. Many different testing approaches may be employed, from functional tests to performance tests, to ensure an application looks and behaves as expected.  

During this stage, it’s essential to test the entire system in setups similar to the production environment because the success of the software depends on it working in the environments your end users are accessing it. Many different testing approaches may be employed, from functional tests to performance tests, to ensure an application looks and behaves as expected. 


In the final step, the built software is deployed to production.  This procedure must be automated for CD to ensure reliable and consistent delivery to users. 

Role of Automation Testing in CI/CD 

Automation enables the meaningful and effective implementation of CI/CD. Automation testing is the cornerstone of every CI/CD process. The main motto of a basic CI/CD process is "build fast, test fast, and fail fast". 

For the developer to receive feedback as soon as possible, tests must be executed as quickly as possible. This makes it possible to find defects early, which makes fixing them easier and less expensive. As a result, the final product will be more accurate and bug-free when released. Only automation testing will make all of this possible. 

Moreover, teams can manage test environments with only a few clicks thanks to automation testing environment provisioning. With the right automation testing platform, QA teams may avoid setting up, maintaining, or tearing down environments because it will offer the most recent versions of browsers, operating systems, and resolution configurations. 

Cloud-based digital experience testing platforms like LambdaTest enables devs and QAs to perform automation testing at scale across 3000+ real browsers, devices, and OS. LambdaTest makes your automation testing process a breeze by offering a cloud grid to execute tests more reliably and efficiently. It supports a variety of automation testing frameworks like Selenium, Cypress, Appium, and more. 

You can perform Selenium testing over a cloud Selenium Grid of different desktop and mobile browsers and ensure a seamless user experience. 

Furthermore, it integrates the best CI/CD tools like Jenkins, Travis CI, GitHub Actions, and more for your automation with CI/CD needs. 

Benefits of Automation Testing in CI/CD 

  • Faster Release Cycles 

By accelerating the build and deploy cycle, teams would be able to roll out new features into production faster and get your product in the hands of users. 

  • Reduced Risk  

The main objective of a continuous delivery process is to make each release a less-dramatic and painless experience for both the QA teams and customers. Continuously rolling out new features and upgrades lower the possibility of issues making it into the final product and speed up rectifying any defects as soon as possible. 

  • Reduced Costs 

By eliminating many of the fixed costs involved with developing and testing application upgrades, a continuous development paradigm will reduce your expenditures.  

Automated environment provisioning, for instance, will cut down on the expense of managing your test infrastructure. You will only need so many computers to run your tests when you perform parallel tests.  

  • Better Quality Products 

One of the main concerns with deploying the CI/CD pipeline is that quality will be sacrificed in favor of speed, yet this is untrue. Continuous integration enables more vital collaboration between developers, meaning bugs are detected and rectified faster in the early stages of the development process.  

Continuously deploying more minor updates to your software will make most modifications (and bugs) unidentifiable to the end user, resulting in happier customers. 

  • Better Business Advantage 

By switching to a continuous development paradigm, your team will have the freedom to modify your software on the go to accommodate changing user demands and market trends.  

CI/CD Pipeline: Selecting the Best Automation Testing Tools 

A successful CI/CD pipeline depends on selecting the appropriate automation testing tools. A few of the popular automation testing tools are: 

  • Selenium 

Web application testing is frequently done using Selenium, an open-source automated testing tool. It can be integrated with well-known CI/CD systems like Jenkins and Travis CI and supports a variety of programming languages like Java, Python, and C#. 

  • Appium 

Mobile application testing is done with the help of open-source Appium technology. It integrates with well-known CI/CD systems like Jenkins and Travis CI and supports various platforms, including iOS and Android. 

  • Robot Framework 

An open-source automated testing tool called Robot Framework is used for acceptance testing and Acceptance Test-Driven Development (ATDD). Python and Java are only two of the many programming languages it supports. It can also be linked with well-liked CI/CD technologies like Jenkins and Travis CI. 

Real-Life Examples of Successful Automation Testing in CI/CD 

There are numerous instances of successful automation testing in CI/CD in the real world, including: 

  • Netflix 

Millions of users worldwide utilize Netflix's streaming service, which is tested using automation. Netflix can ensure its service is dependable and operates effectively even under tremendous load by adopting automation testing. 

  • Amazon 

Amazon can ensure that its platform is dependable and operates properly even with a vast customer base by implementing automation testing. 

Challenges in Automation Testing for CI/CD and How to Overcome Them 

  • Lack of Skills and Expertise 

Automation testing necessitates specialized expertise and skills, which some development teams might still need to gain. Organizations can engage in training and development initiatives to address this issue, or they can hire outside consultants to help with automation testing. 

  • Integration with Legacy Systems 

Integrating automation testing with older systems, which could use various testing frameworks and tools, may be challenging. Developers have two options for addressing this problem: they can create unique integration solutions or use integration tools and frameworks. 

  • Maintenance and Upkeep 

Continuous maintenance and upkeep are necessary for automation testing, which can be time-consuming and expensive. Developers can solve this difficulty by using automation testing technologies with built-in maintenance and upkeep features or by hiring outside specialists to help with maintenance and upkeep. 

Automation Testing Best Practices in CI/CD 

There are a few best practices that developers should adhere to to make sure that automation testing is successful in CI/CD: 

  • Start Testing Early 

Begin testing as early as possible in the development cycle, which facilitates the early detection of flaws and faults, which can assist in saving time and money later on in the development process. 

  • Automate Tests 

Automating tests as much as possible will lessen the possibility of human error while ensuring that tests are conducted consistently and precisely. 

  • Use Version Control 

Test data and test scripts should be managed via version control. This enables developers to keep track of changes to the test scripts and ensures that tests are executed regularly and accurately. 

Future of Automation Testing in CI/CD 

As businesses strive to accelerate and optimize the speed and efficiency of their software development and delivery processes, automation testing is becoming more and more crucial in CI/CD. We anticipate seeing more complex automation testing methods as technology advances, which will further raise the caliber and dependability of software. 


Software development teams become more adaptable thanks to continuous integration and delivery which also speeds up the delivery of trustworthy and secure digital solutions. Without test automation, this pipeline is not feasible. With CI/CD, automation testing is crucial since it ensures that software is delivered promptly and of high quality.