go-live performance testing represented by man holding cell phone to record live music performance

No More Go-Live Performance Testing: Why It Must Happen Beforehand

More and more organizations understand that poorly performing applications are an unacceptable risk to their customers’ satisfaction – and their bottom line.  Further, they are re-learning the old truism “first impressions are lasting ones.” Though some companies use customers as testers to save on software testing costs, this most certainly is not a best practice. Indeed, using go-live performance testing is finally being seen more and more for what it is: an unacceptable, avoidable risk.

Performance testing allows you to simulate how your application responds under real-world conditions. Additionally, it provides an opportunity to evaluate the speed of your critical business processes while you still have time to take corrective action.

A Typical Performance Test Cycle

Though there are many ways to test performance, a typical performance test cycle evaluates the following:

1) First, how well the application can handle the expected load (load testing),

2) Next, how much more the architecture can tolerate before it starts to degrade (scalability testing),

3) And finally, how it responds over at sustained high loads or short duration spikes in use (stress testing).

Please note, there is no practical way to quantify how well an otherwise functional application will be received if it doesn’t work for more than a handful of users at a time. Go-live performance testing does not account for high demand or stressed systems and can cause application failure at the most inopportune times.

How well does an application respond to stressed conditions? And how well does it meet speed requirements? These are the key performance indicators every software development team must ask of its product.  To be clear: a guess is unacceptable. You must accurately measure your performance instead.

As technology becomes more complex, accurately predicting how well critical transactions respond in the real world becomes more difficult. Performance testing, with sub-categories of load, scalability, and stress testing, is the only rigorous way to determine how well an application will function outside the cocoon of its development environment. Go-live performance testing simply won’t cut it.

Need assistance with performance testing? Contact iBeta today.