Software Testing Jobs: They are not so easy!
So you have decided to enter into or build a career in the field of software testing? Great! We provide you some answers/links to your basic queries.
What qualities do I need to possess to enter into / survive in the software testing field?
Entering into is easier than surviving in any field. In addition to all the good qualities required of an employee, you will need to be intelligent, detailed, organized, skeptical and tough. The competition is tight and you have to have an edge all the time. The playing field is rough and you have to have enough courage to stay smiling. If this has already scared you, a software testing job is not your forte – your place is somewhere else.
What will my work be like?
This field is surprisingly vast and your specific job responsibilities differ from positions and companies. However, the crux of your job will mainly involve testing software (Surprised?).
You can view the following sample job descriptions:
- Software Tester Sample Job Description
- Senior Software Tester Sample Job Description
- Software Test Manager Sample Job Description
There are many other specialized positions in both Manual Testing, Automated Testing and Test Management.
What much will I earn?
Yes, money does matter and this field does pay well (not very very well but well enough). The following sites provide you with a rough idea. However, remember that money is secondary to self-satisfaction.
Where can I find software testing job openings?
There are so many sites out there that the list here is minimal. You can always do an internet search for an exhaustive list. Remember that one need not always wait for job vacancies to submit an application; you can always submit an expression of interest to a company and hope that you will be kept in a pool for future fulfillment. Jobs, like fortunes, seldom fall on your lap from the sky – you need to be proactive.
I am a fresher, what should I do?
Study the basics of software testing. Read some articles on the basic concepts of software testing in this site or browse through Wikipedia or some good internet resource or book. Do not go to the interview without knowing the differences between quality assurance and quality control. Make some conscious effort to understand the fundamentals of the software testing domain.
I have some IT experience, what should I do?
Great. All that you need to do now is what we have mentioned above for a fresher if you haven’t done so already. Then, in your CV, highlight your technical expertise. Also, a few achievements on quality will be to your advantage. However, do not claim something you do not have a right to. Bluffing will only take you so far as the first interview appointment.
What should I watch out for?
- If the management of the company is not very much concerned about quality or does not know much about it, then you and your team might have a tough time.
- If you and your team will have to rely on developers for everything, then there is something wrong. Instead, the developers should be relying on you for product knowledge, requirements understanding etc.
- If the company does not have some sort of quality assurance in place, your efforts on quality control will be either worthless or extremely painful.
- If you or the company thinks that software testing is for the non-performers, then all of you are doomed.
Who should NOT apply for a software testing job?
- If you have poor communication skills (you will need to do a lot more of writing and arguing than you can imagine)
- If you do not like minute work (you will have to investigate things through a magnifying glass while keeping a bird’s eye view at the same time)
- If you are impatient and wish to see results every minute or so (you will have to do a lot of waiting and cursing in this field)
- If you did not read this article word by word (If this sentence caught your eye while you were skimming, then your satisfaction score in a software testing job will be just 2.5 out of 100)
- If you are, in fact, interested to be a developer but wish to apply as a software tester (thinking that entry will be easier that way)
- If you are chickenhearted (no offense to chickens)
Who best fits in a software testing role?
- If you like fishing.
- If you like dishing.
- If you like thinking.
How to prepare a CV / Resume?
Okay, so you have done your initial research, you are convinced and you have decided to apply. You will most probably be required to submit a CV. Though there is no universally accepted format or way of writing a CV, the following points will help you with the basics:
- Purpose: The purpose of your CV is not to get you the job but an interview. When competition is high, the quality of your CV determines your destiny.
- Perspective: You are not writing a CV for yourself but for the reader. So, write what the intended reader needs and wishes to see in your CV.
- Honesty: Do not claim something you do not possess. You might be offered an interview and then the job as well but you will not survive for long. Moreover, you will live and die guilty.
- Photo: Not recommended, especially if you are not photogenic.
- Personal Details: Name, date of birth, gender, nationality, address, phone, email. No need to mention your fax number, father’s name, mother’s name, marital status, sexual orientation etc.
- Achievements: Make them short statements and relate them to the job you are applying for if you can and if true.
- Employment Details: Begin with your current or most recent job and work backwards.
- Qualifications: List the recent qualifications (educational/professional) first.
- Skills: Highlight your professional/technical/language/other skills.
- Hobbies: No need to mention this, especially if you are into stamp collection.
- Length: About 2 pages is fine. People do not have the time and patience for tomes these days.
- Margins: Neither too deep nor too narrow. About 1 inch is fine.
- Fonts: Do not use too many. Preferably, use a single font. Two at the max.
- Font Type: Do not use fancy/uncommon fonts. Use common fonts such as Arial or Times New Roman.
- Text Size: Do not use too large or too small size. 10pt to 12pt is fine.
- Text Styles: Use Bold, Italic and Underline very sparingly.
- Color: Use a single color, preferably black. Or else, two colors at the max. Do not use shades; they do not print well.
- Language: Do not make any spelling errors, grammatical errors or typos. Make use of the spelling/grammar tools present in word processing applications. Avoid flowery or superfluous language; make it simple and direct.
- Paragraphs: Avoid long paragraphs (and sentences). Use bulleted points if necessary.
- Objectivity: Avoid subjective references like “I am smart, hardworking, confident, etc.” No need to mention something which is expected, by default, of a candidate.
Let your CV shine and you are already a step closer to your software testing job. Good Luck!