Whether you are interviewing for a position as a software engineer or automation testing engineer, there is a good chance that you will be asked automation testing questions during the interview. While there can be a variety of questions the interviewer may cover, there are some task-specific questions you may be asked to determine your fit for the role. You can increase your chances of being selected for the job by preparing your answers to these types of questions beforehand. In this article, you will find common interview questions for automation testing with example answers to help you prepare.
What is automation testing?
Automation testing applies automation processes and tools for testing. Additionally, it is a practice where technicians develop automated testing processes for different systems and tools. In software testing, for example, many companies need people to test their software for different use cases. Instead of having a person go through the program many times using different criteria, a skilled automation specialist can design a software program that can run the different simulations in a fraction of the time, and at a marginal cost.
Sample automation testing interview questions
Like many other specialized interview questions, there are a variety of task-specific automation testing questions. You are more likely to encounter these questions for jobs that use automation testing over other types of software engineering or developing roles. In addition to these questions are example answers you may use to help you prepare for your interview.
- What do you think are some advantages of automation testing?
- What kinds of frameworks have you worked with?
- How many test cases have you automated in a day?
- How familiar are you with Selenium?
- How would you select a test case for automation?
- How do you decide which tools to use for automation testing?
- What types of tests would you not automate?
- Do you have any questions for me?
1. What do you think are some advantages of automation testing?
This is a basic question about automation testing that you might be asked during your interview. Your answer can allow the interviewer to see that your personality and work values match with the requirements of the position, as well as your perception of the advantages involved in automation testing. If you are asked this question, connect your answer to what is important for the business that you are interviewing for. Here is an example:
Example: “I am definitely aware of the advantages of automation testing, and I realize it can determine how automation can impact a company. For instance, results of automation can lead to lowering company costs, freeing up team members to fill other roles and delegating resources to other departments. I am confident in my ability to fully use these advantages for this position.”
2. What kinds of frameworks have you worked with?
If you are presented with this question consider highlighting the different frameworks you have personally worked with, as well as frameworks you are familiar with and would like to learn more about. This can show the interviewer that while you may have only worked with one or two select frameworks, you are familiar with others and are motivated to learn something different. Here is an example:
Example: “I am familiar with keyword-driven and data-driven frameworks, but I have more experience using linear scripting and hybrid frameworks.”
3. How many test cases have you automated in a day?
If presented with this question, your answer can be somewhat subjective. For instance, you might spend your entire workday automating a single test that has a much larger impact than 100 smaller tests. If you generally only do small batches of tests in a day, include a description of what your tasks were and how many you would complete in a day. In both cases, be sure your answer highlights the quality and results of your projects to show the interviewer your skills and understanding of the tasks. The following answer is an example to help you answer this question:
Example: “The number usually depended on the complexity of the test cases. With a limited complexity, I could reasonably automate five to six test cases per day. For more complex scenarios, I was able to automate only one or two test cases per day. I would also break down the most complex test cases into elements like take input, calculation and verifying output to organize the project. Some of these test cases took me two days to complete. So it really depends on the complexity of the test case.”
4. How familiar are you with Selenium?
The interviewer may ask you this question to gauge your skill level when working within the free Selenium framework. Oftentimes, businesses can cut resource costs with free tools, and Selenium can offer a free method of automation testing through its framework. However, if you have limited experience with Selenium, explain what you know of similar frameworks to the interviewer. Also, if you are familiar with working within the Selenium framework, share your experience with the interviewer. Below are two sample answers for either case:
Example: “Selenium supports functional and regression testing, as well as a few different scripting languages like Java and PHP. I am familiar with both testing types as well as the scripting languages supported by Selenium, however, I have only had the opportunity to work within Selenium for six test cases. I hope to have the opportunity to work with it again, as I enjoyed learning the framework.”
Example: “I have no working experience with the Selenium framework, however, I am experienced with the scripting languages Selenium supports. I am confident that with my current skill level, I can learn and operate automation testing within the Selenium framework.”
5. How would you select a test case for automation?
The interviewer may ask this question to get a sense of your skills in determining the execution frequency for a test case, if a test case is critical for business functions and features, how you would analyze the results of an automated test and how you manage the time it takes to run the test to achieve automation. Consider the following sample answer:
Example: "I would first determine whether the test case is critical to the business or if it just serves an end-to-end scenario. Then, I would plan the execution frequency according to automation needs and begin the test run, while monitoring for defects. As the automation test concludes, I would analyze the results within a time frame that does not exceed the time it would take for manual execution.”
Related: Software Engineer Resume Examples
6. How do you decide which tools to use for automation testing?
The interviewer wants to know your decision process and how you apply the tools you use to the automation testing process. Use this opportunity to highlight your skills as well as your efficiency when completing similar projects. Consider the following sample answer:
Example: “I would start by looking at the requirements to identify which testing scenarios I want to automate. Then I would research the tools that support the project requirements. For these, I determine whether the budget can support necessary resources, either by supplying the necessary tools or hiring skilled personnel as needed. Finally, I would compare the tools needed to ensure they meet key criteria and choose tools that not only fit the criteria but stay within the company budget as well.”
7. What types of tests would you not automate?
If presented with this question, connect your abilities to determine both when to and when not to automate testing. This factor is crucial to determine before beginning automation because it can tell you whether a test type is worth spending the resources on. Likewise, your potential employer may use this question as a way to be certain that you will know how to appropriately allocate tools and resources to perform your job. Consider the following example answer:
Example: “I would not automate test cases that are seldom executed or that are more quickly executed manually. I also would avoid automation testing on cases that extend to exploratory and usability testing, as these test types could present misuse of time and resources.”
8. Do you have any questions for me?
This is a general interview question that can be applied to any position but use this opportunity to ask about the specifications of the position. For example, you might choose to ask about what frameworks the team prefers, what kinds of tests you will be automating and whether you are expected to take on other responsibilities. Here are some examples:
“What kinds of frameworks does the team prefer to use for automation testing?”
“What resources and tools do you provide for automation testing?”
“How many test cases will I be expected to automate during a given day?”
Tips for before the interview
In addition to preparing your answers to these automation testing interview questions, consider the following additional tips to help you get ready for your interview.
Keep researching the position that you are interviewing for
The more you know about the requirements of the role, the more you can be prepared to answer any additional job-specific questions about the position. For instance, review any skills you may need for the industry, such as programming and coding as well as the tools you are used to using for automation testing.
Continue preparing for other common interview questions
For example, you may still be asked to talk about your background, your work history and experience with working in or studying for a similar role.
Consider bringing a portfolio of work or assignments
Sample work can highlight your experience in past automation testing and programming roles. This can further provide a way for your interviewer to see your skills.