Agile software testing in banking: collaboration is trendy!  

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To effectively test banking solutions, you need more than the right people and tools. Sometimes even the right people and the right tools are not enough to effectively test banking solutions. The methodology adopted can make or break the process. Employing testers at every stage and speed up the work and improve the end result.  

This article discusses:  

  • what approach banking application tests require  
  • whatthe consequences of poor banking application testing are  
  • what solutions are used to improve the work of testers  
  • whether Agile methodology can be applied in the banking software development cycle  
  • how domain knowledge helps in testing banking applications  

A core banking application is a very complex IT product. At the same time, it is expected to be extremely reliable. Not only are these applications the gatekeepers to customers’ money, but they also process extremely sensitive data – both financial and personal.  

A well-designed domain application must therefore be secure and efficient. And if it is a web application that supports employees of financial institutions in their daily work, it must also be user-friendly. Therefore, testers, who go through all functionalities bear a lot of responsibility.  

One of the key areas of banking application testing is to identify security loopholes. According to the 2022 Contrast Security report, as many as 60% of banking industry players worldwide have fallen prey to cyberattacks. The consequences of hacker attacks are a threat to customers, but also a serious danger for the reputation of the financial companies themselves, especially due to personal data leaks (including credit card data). Not to mention that any disruptions in access to money can affect thousands of clients, who will then be more inclined to transfer to other banks.  

Identifying potential errors is also crucial for the user experience. One example is Citibank, which suffered millions of dollars’ worth of losses as a result of the faulty design of a back-office application. Three bank employees approved a high-value transaction and none of them detected a costly error. How is this possible? The outdated, hard-to-navigate application interface, full of confusing messages, was to blame. It not only failed to support them in doing their job but also failed to prevent serious financial damage.  

The example of Citibank only confirms what testers working in banking have known for years – the essence of testing in the banking and finance industry is to ensure the correct operation of the entire process. To help themselves, producers of solutions for banking try different ideas – from test automation to the integration of effective testing tools. The waterfall approach has dominated this field for years. However, Agile methodology may prove to be a success. Can it be applied and how can it be done? 

Agile methodology in testing: when “three musketeers” join hands  

One of the principles of Agile methodology is the shared responsibility of all team members for the future product. However, the most common practice in the software development process is to involve the tester only in the final phase. They are made responsible for a specific development stage, and they take up their tasks once the basic decisions regarding the adopted solutions have already been made. They work on a solution created without their participation, which is, n fact, a waste of the team’s potential.  

This can be avoided when the “three musketeers”, i.e., an analyst, a developer, and a tester, work together throughout the entire development process. A tester involved in the process of designing a solution, especially in the analytical phase, can immediately verify emerging ideas. Looking at the solution from the perspective of functional testing practice, the “third musketeer” often brings a dose of healthy skepticism. Based on their experience, they determine which solutions can actually work, and which are applicable just in theory.  

The Agile approach to the testing phase also includes conducting tests throughout the development period, as often as possible (usually after each iteration). This is especially important in the production of software for banking, as it ensures that the solution meets the high requirements – and what’s more, the software gets  implemented faster, bringing measurable benefits to the entire organization.  

Domain knowledge is key to testing any banking application  

New functional testing method are not enough to deliver secure software for banking. Testers must have the appropriate qualifications and domain knowledge about the processes taking place in the IT ecosystem for banking.  

Moreover, testers must know banking processes perfectly, with their course and mutual dependencies between respective banking applications. This will allow them to conduct manual tests and create scenarios for automatic tests. Knowledge of the expectations of the end user, i.e., the bank’s client, is also crucial.  

At CCA, we can boast of many years of experience in banking application testing. We are specialists in both automatic tests and functional tests. We know the specifics of banking IT systems and the processes that take place in the banking sector. We have proven many times that we understand the needs of our clients, who are global banks. 

We use our proprietary PATT tool for our tests, the only existing application that allows for automatic testing of FIS Profile. It allows us to combine the advantages of manual and mass usability testing. We also integrated it with Selenium, the most popular tool for testing web applications.  

At CCA, we understand the complexities of banking applications and the importance of thorough, effective testing. We are committed to delivering top-tier testing services that meet these demands. Our seasoned experts, innovative testing tools, and in-depth understanding of the banking industry and processes make us the ideal partner for your project. 

We are ready to help you ensure your banking application meets the highest standards of security and efficiency. Contact us today to discuss your software development needs or book a free technical consultation.