What’s the Difference Between Functional and Performance Testing Services?

Proper QA & Testing is Always a Priority in Software Development

Testing is one of the most critical parts of any kind of software development project. After planning and coding, testing ensures that all the requirements of the project are met and that each feature functions as it was designed to. 

If your company has hired a vendor to develop software, you’ll want to make sure the testing is done properly. That may mean the vendor has a team of testers or it might mean you need to hire a testing firm like BairesDev specifically for this purpose. The details of your project and the exact services your developer provides will determine the appropriate approach. 

One of the first things you should know about testing is that there are different kinds that examine different aspects of the software. Functional testing ensures that each feature works for users as it was designed to, whereas performance testing measures backend characteristics to make sure the software will perform well over time. 

Here we delve further into what’s involved in these types of testing. 

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What Is the Purpose of Software Testing?

Software testing checks all kinds of applications and programs to identify glitches that could cause problems later, such as usability, data entry, and processing issues as well as anything else that could frustrate users or, worse, compromise their data. 

These kinds of complications can be catastrophic for companies that earn their revenue by selling software. When a business loses its customers’ trust, it also loses their revenue and their loyalty.

Such issues can also be highly problematic for companies that use their custom-developed applications for their employees or internal operations. When a business loses its employees’ trust, it loses their commitment to the company mission. And when it loses critical data, it loses productivity, efficiency, and the ability to respond well to customer needs. 

Any of these failures can be tough to bounce back from. 

What Is Functional Testing?

Functional testing ensures a software application meets functional specifications based on project requirements. It’s conducted by testers who perform each software function, including the following items:

  • Login – observes the login process to see if users are able to get into the application with no problems
  • Primary functions – makes sure the application does what it’s supposed to do
  • User interface – ensures the screens are easy and intuitive to navigate and that each button or link takes the user to an expected location
  • Errors – determines what conditions must occur to produce an error and whether appropriate error messages appear
  • Payment – examines the stability of the payment system, to ensure users are able to make payments seamlessly

Functional testing can be done manually or automatically and incorporates several different types, including:

  • Unit testing – ensures each component (or “unit”) of the application works as expected
  • Smoke testing – determines if each function operates as it should
  • Sanity testing – checks to be sure minor modifications have fixed the issues they were meant to resolve
  • Regression testing – makes certain updates don’t cause additional problems
  • System testing – a high-level test that shows whether the system meets technical, functional, and business requirements
  • User acceptance testing – typically performed last in a series of tests, it ensures the application can handle “real-world” scenarios

What Is Performance Testing?

The aim of performance testing is to eliminate any impediments to smooth performance. Whereas functional testing looks at the features of the application, performance testing checks the software as a system to make sure it can handle the expected amount of traffic, respond quickly to user requests, and operate at appropriate speeds. The system is tested under a variety of conditions to ensure it can handle different scenarios. 

This type of testing is just as important as functional testing because it can have just as big an impact on companies and their customers. For example, a web application that doesn’t load quickly is one customers will quickly abandon. A customer relationship management (CRM) program that crashes when too many people are using it is one that employees will avoid. 

Firms that offer performance testing services provide several specific types of testing:

  • Load testing – checks to see how big a traffic load the system can handle
  • Endurance testing – examines the load over a period of time to ensure ongoing stability
  • Volume testing – determines the efficiency of the application when loaded with a large volume of data
  • Scalability testing – makes sure the software can deal with increasing numbers of users or data
  • Stress testing – determines how well the hardware resources, such as CPU, memory, and disk space, can support the software

What Are Service Options for Software Testing?

Just as you may opt to have your software development done in-house, you may have professionals on your team who can conduct software testing. However, the key to successful software testing is to have it done by a different team than the one that creates the software. Once removed — that is, two different teams working for the same company — is good but twice removed — the two teams working for two separate companies — is ideal. 

That’s why, if you want to hire professionals to perform performance testing services or functional testing services, you should consider outsourcing software testing. An outsourced testing team can offer many benefits:

  • Expertise

    Outsourced testers do nothing but testing, so are highly adept at where your software can be improved.

  • Insight

    As a third party, an outsourced tester will see your project from a purely functional perspective and, therefore, offer the most objective feedback possible.

  • Cost

    When you hire software testers as employees, you must pay for talent searches, onboarding, training, and benefits in addition to salary – even when work slows down. With outsourced performance testing services and functional testing services, you only pay for the actual services rendered and only as often as you need.

  • Convenience

    If you happen to be looking for a specific type of tester, a testing firm can find them for you, eliminating the need to conduct an exhaustive search.

  • Security

    Outsourced testers are always up on the latest methods and technology, including the critically important matter of security.

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