SOFTWARE PERFORMANCE ENGINEERING and TESTING
A Look Into Performance Testing: Is Your Business Performing?
"It pertains to accomplishing a given task - measured against known standards which can include cost, accuracy, reliabillity, completeness, and speed."
Now, here's the question: Is your business and your IT applications performing the way your customers, business partners, and investors expect it to?
This is where performance testing comes in. It's the process that determines the speed, effectiveness, and reliability of a computer, an application, a device, or a network. For such testing procedures to be reliable, it usually involves...
- Measuring 'concrete' metrics such as load and response time, MIPS (millions of instructions per second), etc. along with...
- Evaluation of qualitative attributes like scalability, reliability, and interoperability of the applications and resources in question
Do You Need A Reliable Performance Testing Process?To an outsider, performance testing may seem unnecessary. After all, you should be investing more into product development and creation, customer service, conversion optimization, and other activities that DIRECTLY affect your bottomline, right?
To business-owners who know what's up however, performance testing is an indispensable tool - one that conclusively answers difficult questions like...
- How many users can my online application or software suite handle simultaneously?
- Will my business applications meet my pre-determined targets and goals?
- Are my hardware resources robust enough to handle a sudden influx of traffic?
- Is my system able to support rapid customer growth?
- And those are just to name a few
Through performance testing, businesses - SMBs, multinationals, and those that are in between - can dramatically cut down the business risks brought by a newly deployed business-critical application or system while minimizing the chances of failure after releasing it to the public.
So to answer the question above in a nutshell, YES - every business that relies on applications and software products to deliver product and services NEEDS performance testing. Without it, running an IT-reliant business is like walking in a pitch-black alley...and the results can be disastrous!
Without A Thorough Performance Testing Process Your Business Could Be Losing Money AND Customers!Your IT and business applications can have all the features and functionalities your customers could ask for, but are your applications FAST enough? Without a reliable performance testing procedure, it's impossible to answer that question. Even worse however, your business and its applications is very likely to suffer from...
- Long Response Time: In IT and data processing, response time pertains to the amount of time it takes for an application to respond to a user's input or inquiry. This should be kept to a minimum. The basic advice regarding response times has been roughly the same for the last 30 years. In the book "Usability Engineering" (Nielsen, 1993), the verdict is that you only have 10 seconds to keep your user's attention...and if your applications' response times are taking longer than that, you could lose your customers and prospects FOR GOOD!
- Poor Scalability: When your software applications and programs can't keep up with the expected number of users and can't accommodate a wide range of users, you are suffering from poor scalability. In simpler terms, this means your applications can't handle additional workload and users. For investors and stakeholders who expect your business (and their investments) to grow, this is BAD news!
- Bottlenecks: This phenomenon occurs when the capacity of an entire system is limited by a handful of components. Performance bottlenecks can occur when there's excessive contention for system resources such memory, storage, CPU processing power, and more. Databases and heavy transactional applications are especially prone to bottlenecks. When left alone, this results to data flow slowing down to a crawl - gravely affecting the whole system's performance and can even lead to crashes.
You know what they say about misery? It loves company! When slow response times, poor scalability, and bottlenecks plague your business and applications...
- Reduced employee productivity and unsold products and services due to downtime
- Greater capital expenses (for purchasing new hardware and fixing problems)
- Risk of losing customers, business partners, and investors
- Tarnished corporate image
Running A Business Doesn't Have To Be A Shot In The Dark, We're Here To Help!Performance - it's a must-have feature. Your product might be rich in features and free from bugs. But if it falls flat on its face in its attempt to meet the performance expectations of your business partners and customers, your application or solution will be branded as a failure. So where should a business-owner start? The answer: CONTACT US!
Here at SPRE Labs, we offer on-time and high-quality performance testing services to businesses and organizations that desire to grow. Since 2007, we have consulted for and serviced countless businesses in the retail industry; government institutions; and corporations.
To ensure that our clients get the best bang for their buck, we follow a rigorous, 5-step process for performance testing:
- Step 1 Identify The Testing Environment: To get started, we look into your applications ins and outs; the hardware resources you use; the network configurations; and what testing tools are available. This is instrumental in creating more efficient tests.
- Step 2 Prepare Performance Acceptance Criteria List: Remember, performance is measured against pre-set standards. So in this step, our team of testing specialists will pinpoint the performance goals and constraints (includes response time, resource allocation, etc.) for your system and applications.
- Step 3 Plan And Design Performance Test: Once we have identified the environment and created a list of standards to meet, we will pinpoint key usage scenarios; possible variability across users; generate test data; and determine metrics to keep an eye on. All of these will form the foundation for test workloads and workload profiles.
- Step 4 Execute The Test: With the testing environment, list of criteria, and test design all taken care of, it's time to run the test. While the tests are running, we will keep a close eye and validate the scripts, data, and the testing environment.
- Step 5 Analyze, Tune, And Retest: Without a clear view of the bigger picture, the results of a performance test are nothing more than a bunch of figures. In light of that, our team will analyze the test results. Your investors and stakeholders need conclusions that are supported by hard data. Your IT staff, on the other hand, are more concerned with the analysis, comparison, and details that led to the results. The 5th step of our performance testing process takes care of both!
Types Of Tests We Design And Execute
- Soak Testing: to discover how well your system behaves under significant load for extended periods of time (24, 48, 72-hour peroid)
- Load Testing: to identify your application's maximum operating capacity; find bottlenecks; and determine the cause
- Stress Testing: to help determine how stable your system when subjected beyond normal operational capacity...often to a breaking point
- Capacity Tests: to determine how many users your application can cater to before its performance and stability degrades
- Destructive Testing: to verify that your software serves its purpose well even with invalid and/or unexpected inputs - ensuring that your error-management and input validation routines are working as expected
- Expert Service Backed By Best-Of-Breed Tools: Our IT specialists are our greatest advantage. With (Number Of Years) years of combined experienced and backed up the best tools available, our team of experts are more than ready to help you turn your promising applications and software products into competitive business advantages.
- Reliable Performance Testing No Matter What Applications You Use: Not all businesses are created equal. Oftentimes, small-to-medium enterprises run simple applications such as a webstore or a website. Multi-million businesses, on the other hand, rely on complex IT environments - using databases; has frontend and backend applications; and takes advantage of the cloud for backup, disaster recovery, and added mobility.
Whatever the IT environment and applications you use, you can count on SPRE Labs and our experienced IT professionals to come up with a thorough performance testing process - ensuring that you are fully equipped to handle the workload ahead!
- Thorough Review Backed By Industry Best Practices: IT is an industry that's always on the move. Today's best tools and practices will be rendered obsolete within 6 months. But don't worry, SPRE Labs will help you keep up with this fast-moving industry.
If you currently have a performance testing process BUT would like to give it the upgrade it needs, give us a call. Our performance testing specialists regularly update their skills and know-how - and they're more than happy to review your current testing procedures and suggest improvements based on your business goals and demands.