You have to plan your Continuous Delivery pipeline with quality in mind from the outset. The only way to effectively do that is to design tests before development really begins, to continually collect metrics, and to build a test automation architecture integrated into your Continuous Delivery pipeline. The test automation architecture defines the setup of test tools and tests throughout the pipeline and should support flexibility and adaptability to help you meet your business objectives.
This test automation architecture should facilitate easy selection of just the right tests to be performed to match the flow of your software through your pipeline as it gets closer to release. From unit tests and code level security, through functional and component testing, to integration and performance testing. The further the software progresses along the pipeline, the greater the number of dependencies on other systems, data, and infrastructure components – and, the more difficult it is to harmonize these variables. Making sane selections of tests to run at each moment in the pipeline becomes more and more important in order to focus on the area of interest.