Dec 23rd, 2022

Why Does DevOps Recommend Shift-Left Testing Principles?


Agilemania, a small group of passionate Lean-Agile-DevOps consultants and trainers, is the most tru... Read more

Companies cannot afford their products to fail in the present era of fierce competition and unpredictable market conditions. However, because of applications' complexity and development, businesses frequently run a high risk of failure. Shift-left testing is being promoted or used by many DevOps teams due to the need to lower risk and increase the likelihood of success – streamlining the DevOps lifecycle. Let's examine why DevOps recommends shift-left testing principles.

What is Shift-Left Testing?

“Test early and test often” is the catchphrase for shift-left testing. The theory is that when businesses employ the conventional waterfall workflow of planning, designing, programming, and testing, significant faults are not discovered until near the conclusion of the production phase. However, if businesses began testing earlier and more frequently throughout the software development life cycle (SDLC), such issues would be simpler to find, less expensive, and less troublesome when fixed.

Shift-left methodologies improve a company's chances of creating a more successful, high-quality product by utilizing the DevOps techniques of continuous testing and continuous development.

Why does DevOps Recommend Shift-Left Testing Principles?

Let’s look at some reasons why DevOps recommends shift-left testing principles:

1. Lower Costs

The earlier flaws are discovered, the less expensive they are to fix. Again, the price varies depending on the bug. Normal defects typically cost roughly 30 times more to remedy in production, whereas security bugs might cost up to 60 times more to resolve later on. Any bug discovery earlier in the lifecycle process, especially any security flaws discovered, aids a corporation in reducing risk and avoiding high unforeseen costs.

2. Launch on Anticipated Release Dates

The necessity to postpone a product's release date is one of the numerous expensive effects of late problem discovery. Due to this, businesses are forced to choose between delaying the launch of a product or releasing flawed software. Companies can avoid this undesirable situation by adopting shift left testing.

3. Better Quality Software

Operations can establish testing and deployment procedures when they "shift left" to collaborate with development. Shift-left testing enables a business to create a better final product. The ability of the shift left principle to foresee issues is another factor that affects product quality. The viewpoint employed with the present, conventional workflow is insufficient for this.

A company's ability to create a better product from the bottom up is supported when it focuses on prevention rather than trying to identify issues after they have already occurred.

4. Increased Competitive Advantage

Launching a high-quality product on schedule is crucial for the survival of many businesses, not just for success. Shift-left testing practices are encouraged by DevOps since they contribute to a product's overall success.

Companies can fulfill deadlines and substantially cut costs when shift-left testing prevents issues, enhances product quality, and increases productivity throughout product development. A corporation invests in its present and future success when it devotes time and resources to utilizing shift-left testing in its software development process.

What are the benefits of shift left testing?

Shift-left testing, to put it simply, is a methodology that pushes programmers to test their code as early as possible. By catching errors and faults early on, the likelihood that they may cause issues downstream is decreased.

1. Reduce Costs for Development and Testing

As was already mentioned, the cost and consequences of repairing bugs grow as time passes. Shift-left testing is done following each build to identify and fix faults immediately. A shift-left testing technique can lower the overall development, testing, and resolution costs because defects are found early.

2. Create Cleaner, Higher-Quality Code

Because they are difficult to fix, faults that are detected later in the process can go unfixed. Bugs can be fixed if discovered early, resulting in a final product with higher-quality performance and code than requirements and expectations.

3. Coordinate Bug Resolution

Since testing starts with the initial build, shift-left encourages better collaboration between developers and testers. Shift-left testing is the most effective method for aligning testing and development when speed and good quality are required.

4. Ensure Customer Satisfaction

The code delivered at the conclusion of the development cycle and put into production is cleaner, higher quality, and more stable when using a shift-left strategy. Users don't have to wait for new versions because they can go into production with little to no obvious faults. That's not all, though. Shift left testing has other advantages, such as:

  • It speeds up feedback loops, allowing developers to receive instant feedback on their code and make modifications or adjustments immediately.
  • Early problem detection is beneficial to prevent problems from becoming major ones.
  • As errors are discovered and rectified more quickly, the resulting code is of higher quality.
Overall, shift-left testing is a potent technique that may help you enhance both your DevOps productivity and the quality of your code.

Shift-Left and Test Automation in DevOps

Test Automation is one of the core benefits that a company can derive while implementing a shift-left strategy. Automated testing can help you speed up the testing process and reduce the number of errors that make it into production.

It's no longer an issue of why but rather how to implement test automation in an agile environment.

When combined with test automation solutions, Shift Left strategies can substantially elevate your DevOps practices, leading to more efficient and reliable software development.

Incorporating test automation into your SDLC can be done in a number of ways, including using commercial products that require programming, self-developed test automation frameworks, and code-free test automation technologies. Testing automation requires a well-chosen framework because it is not worthwhile if it costs more to run than it saves. The time commitment can outweigh the benefits of employing the wrong automation framework.

Challenges Faced While Implementing Test Automation

Let us look at the everyday challenges of implementing test automation.

1. Total Build Time

Many businesses consider creating their own test automation frameworks, but doing so is time- and money-consuming and rarely successful.

2. Steep-Learning Curve

Employers who utilize open-source, code-based solutions like Selenium rely on staff with technical skills to maintain their test automation framework. This is a problem as non-technical business users are the ones most familiar with their workflows, and technical teams frequently have more high-value tasks to complete than testing.

3. High Maintenance Cost

Static scripts are what most test automation systems employ. They don't instantly change to new screens, buttons, user flows, or user inputs that result from UI modifications. Static script-based tools require significantly more work to maintain because their scripts break more frequently than dynamic script-based tools.

4. Solution

The rapid ramp-up, low learning curve, and low maintenance requirements of a no-code test automation platform address the aforementioned problems. This helps your business to accelerate the implementation of changes in an environment of strong competition.

If you are having a difficult time facing the DevOps interview, we recommend you reading our guide to top 30 DevOps interview questions with answers.


Shift left testing is a great technique for raising the caliber of your software products. You can find more flaws before they enter production by shifting the testing focus to earlier in the development cycle. In the long run, this can save you both time and money. Shift left testing should be incorporated into your DevOps workflow right away if it isn't already.

Read about DevOps tools to implement a better understanding of the subject. We discussed some important reasons to understand why DevOps recommends shift-left testing principles. By putting this technique into practice, you can raise the caliber of your software and provide your clients with superior goods.

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