In the process of application development, we always encounter bugs and other issues that can endanger its effective performance. Most times these issues arise due to human error. Delivering performance is the cohesive responsibility of developers and testers alike. However, this can only be achieved by implementing proper testing approaches.
Software and applications are becoming more complex, and developers have to ensure the systems are secure, scalable while delivering exceptional user-experience. There can be no room for errors or bugs. This is where we require Performance Engineering to be implemented at the design level. Implementing performance engineering signifies a cultural shift in how organizations approach different processes.
What is Performance Engineering and how is it different from Performance Testing?
Before we discuss performance engineering, we need to know that it is not the same as performance testing. Performance testing is considered to be a subset of performance engineering. Performance testing is concerned with the pace, scalability, reliability, stability, and load time of an application. On the other hand, performance engineering is concerned with designing an application with performance metrics in mind and discovering issues early on in the development cycle. It focuses on the non-functional requirements of an application.
A performance engineer unlike a tester who just files the issues/bugs aims at resolving issues by doing a root cause analysis and offering apt solutions to resolve those issues. It focuses on the design of the application right from to start in order to avoid issues and challenges later on in the development lifecycle. It is a continuous process that is part of every phase of development.
Why is Performance Engineering Important?
User experience and application performance are of prime importance in any product. It’s been a long time since we have evolved from the waterfall methodology of testing. Now testing is no longer a spoke in the wheel, it has evolved into a culture within the organization. This has been made possible with the advent of DevOps and Agile methodology. However, products may still fall short of resilience and performance when issues are overlooked until the product starts to fail.
If we cannot avoid potential failure then the methodologies we use can only do very little for us. This is where implementing performance engineering is part of the design that can help in avoiding failures because we have considered the possibilities of failures and addressed them before they arise. With a growing number of applications to be deployed, performance engineers have to test regularly to ensure error-free implementation of additional of every integration.
Popular Techniques to Improve Performance Engineering
Early Understanding of Performance Risks: It is very important to first understand your performance expectations you have from the application. These risks can endanger the success of the application and eventually lead to potential business failure. It is important to first assess and identify the potential risks you might face. Once you have identified that, you also need to assess the level of damage it can cause, and the probability of the risk occurring. You can also rank them in terms of severity and probability, and then resolve them accordingly.
Establishing Performance Objectives: Another factor that plays an important role is defining the performance objectives. You can set quantitative objectives, which will help you to control and assess the performance engineering efforts. However, you need to set realistic objectives, taking into consideration the number of requests a system would receive. Objectives cannot be the same for all applications, so they have to be defined individually. The onus will be on your teams to achieve these objectives.
Assessing the Architecture: Architecture is also an integral factor and determines the quality of the application. So as you implement performance engineering it is also important to assess the architecture. You have to process the architecture based on reliability, reusability, quick modification, and scalability. If architectural sessions have issues then it can be very costly to fix it after the application has been developed. We always have to remember performance cannot be added to the architecture, it has to be designed into it.
Monitoring Relevant KPIs: When KPIs are monitored, it gives an understanding of how an application degrades at a certain workload level. KPIs can show the current capacity by connecting user loads, TPS, the response time of the application, and error rate. You need to identify the relevant KPIs by understanding the architecture. Every bottleneck has to be mapped by identifying the touchpoints through which data is received or transferred. These KPIs will give you the entire understanding of the performance.
Implementing Automation: While implementing automation, ensure that you start early. Also, identify why and what you want to automate. You can yield better coverage by implementing your automation based on various scenarios the application might face. Many engineers also use various tools and test automation frameworks that can help in effectively implementing the automation process.
If you are unable to effectively implement performance engineering, you can also choose partners who can implement performance engineering across the product development cycle. eInfochips with over 25 years of experience, with over 600 web and mobile testing experts, and test automation frameworks can effectively implement performance engineering as part of each phase of the development cycle. To know more, please get in touch with our team of experts.