Banking application tests: in the golden triangle of domain knowledge

In specialized tests, the point is not to “click through” the application, but to ensure the correct flow of the entire process. This is where domain knowledge comes in handy.

George E.P. Box, dubbed “one of the greatest statistical minds of the twentieth century,” said discovering the unexpected was more important than confirming the known.

This statement perfectly sums up the responsibility that software testers in banking take. Sometimes a minor bug that hinders payment processing can cost a business millions of dollars.

To avoid such a disaster, an experienced team of qualified testers is necessary. But how do you know if a tester is qualified? Or rather, how do you know if they are qualified to test a given application or process that involves several separate systems? It turns out that when it comes to testing specialized applications, especially when it comes to BFSI (Banking, Financial Services, and Insurance) applications, there is no going without industry-specific knowledge!

BFSI application testing: the golden triangle of skills

Danny R. Faught of lists three categories of software tester qualifications: testing skills, as well as domain and technical knowledge.

It goes without saying that every tester should have basic testing competencies and the necessary technical knowledge. However, in banking software, the concept of “proper application testing” is much more complex than in other industries. Errors of minor banking system functionalities can have huge consequences, not only financial, but also image-related and legal. This is why in banking domain, the reliability bar for IT solutions is set extremely high.

Contrary to “classic” consumer applications, banking applications require specific knowledge of banking processes: their course and interdependencies between system applications. Without this knowledge, the tester will not be able to prepare a specific case for automatic and manual tests that correctly reflect the course of the way of thinking and actions of the end user of the tested solution, based on the implementation of specific business processes. Consequently, it will not take care of checking the given test cases that determine the proper functioning of the application. Read more about specificity of banking domain testing.

Banking domain testing: who has the know-how, rules

Currently, domain experts are more often employed in performance testing and functional testing. And that is well enough. Why? In fact, banking domain testing requires not only an army of testers, but above all a team of analysts with in-depth domain knowledge.

Without knowledge of a given banking domain, the entire testing process will be weighed with enormous risk. It is mainly about the insufficient coverage of the testing scope, which, unfortunately, will be quickly and painfully verified in the production phase. In-depth knowledge of the banking process and its relationships is necessary to scrupulously analyze the scope of tasks and prepare test scenarios. Only with this approach to application testing will it be possible to detect all critical errors in IT systems, ensuring customer satisfaction with the bank’s services and security to money.

When a bank outsources software testing, it does not necessarily specify in advance what functionality to test and how. It often presents only documentation (functional or technical) that is not yet as standardized as e.g. technical documentation in the construction industry. It is the experienced analysts who have to design the entire process in such a way as to ensure maximum coverage with the least cost. Only then do the testers start working to finally present the results and recommendations. For more on  how to gain knowledge in BFSI testing, go to Softwaretestinghelp.

Functional test outsourcing: knowledge is added value

Testers with domain knowledge have a better understanding of specific business processes in a given industry, so they can more fully ensure the coverage of tested applications or processes. One of the industries where this is best seen is banking. However, what to do when testers with specific BFSI skills are simply not available in-house at the moment?

The outsourcing of functional tests to specialized partners is not yet popular in the banking domain. The main barrier is not the complex systems of a given bank, but the security requirements and legal regulations. The belief that the in-house team will prepare test cases better, and then run tests and report the entire process more accurately also plays a role. However, in the absence of adequate staff, hiring an experienced team of external testers is a more cost-effective and efficient solution than hiring and training new staff in BFSI tests. Today, new banking IT solutions simply cannot wait!

Specialized tests require specialized testing tools. At CCA Europe, we have a proprietary tool at our disposal: PATT, the world’s only native FIS Profile automated testing platform. Our proprietary solution also supports automatic tests of other IT systems and applications. To increase the level of automation, we have integrated PATT with Selenium.

Need support in the analytical or execution phase of your BFSI application testing project? Looking for a partner who is experienced in the banking domain to handle your functional tests? Feel welcome to a 30-minute call with our CEO, Jacek Nowak, no strings attached.