This Masterclass was kindly sponsored by TestRail. TestRail is a test case management platform that helps engineering teams plan, organize, execute, track their testing more efficiently. More than 10,000 teams at organizations like NASA, Atlassian, Apple, Microsoft, and AutoDesk use TestRail to manage their testing and QA at scale. Our platform is well-loved by testers and developers alike because it is fast, flexible, and easy to use. With TestRail, you can integrate with Jira (or 20+ other tools), track both manual and automated test results, and get real-time visibility into the progress of your testing. 

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This Masterclass will be hosted by the one and only Gwen Diagram and will take place on the 23rd of February 2021 at 3 PM (UK Time). More information about Alex Burlton and the full Masterclass description is available below.

Click 'Register Now' to reserve your free space. 


Alex Burlton

Alex Burlton

Software Engineer


Automated UI tests give you confidence that whole areas of your system are playing nicely together. But they also come at a price, and it's not just that they're slower than other types of test. Worse than that, they can also be unreliable - I'm talking about "that test" which occasionally falls over when nothing is actually wrong.

This flakey behaviour is by no means unique to UI tests, but they are much more susceptible to it. By definition, they are covering many areas of your system at once, meaning there's a bigger set of moving parts in which something can go wrong. Mis-fired requests, elements stealing focus at the wrong moment, variable loading times - it can be a minefield. And when a test does start acting up, diagnosing and fixing it can be even more awkward.

So what do we do? The first important step is to acknowledge that these flakes are inevitable, just as bugs in production are. By embracing failure and investing in observability, we can ensure that they are as easy to diagnose and quick to fix as possible. In this talk, I will demonstrate some strategies for achieving this, as well as outlining why it is crucial to do so for your team's productivity.


  • Flakes in CI pipelines are a productivity killer, and UI tests are particularly susceptible.
  • Whilst you can learn from flakes and develop strategies to minimise them, it is inevitable that you'll continue to introduce new ones.
  • Therefore, strong observability around your UI tests is important to stay on top of the problem.
Alex Burlton
Alex is a Developer, DevOps engineer and line manager from Leeds in the UK, working at Sonocent. He has worked in development for 6 years, and over that time focused on writing easily deployable, testable software. An infrastructure as code fan, he writes repeatable architecture scripts and loves teaching others. Outside of work, he’s a Taskmaster fan, and has even has made it into the official #HomeTasking compilations! He enjoys sailing, the odd pair of high heels and a good ale.