Functional Testing Industry Wisdom Interview Q&A

Getting Stuck? What to do to move ahead in Testing Career?

Recently I am getting messages with the core problem ‘Getting stuck in my Testing Career’. No Interview calls. Only Automation. Tool-focused interviews. No practical tool experience. Especially from the 5-8+ experience bracket. Yeah! I know, continuous rejection is frustrating. I have been there. But nothing can be done about it. Accept the fact that industry has transitioned faster than your skills. We are awesome Functional testers. Superb Agile professionals. Good Domain knowledge. Effective Team managers. But…

The problem as I see it is,

  • <5 Years: Most of the orgs utilize testers for manual functional testing (of course there are exceptions with 80-20% rule :P).
  • >5 Years: Ooops! Nobody is asking for Manual Testers all-of-a-sudden!

The solution,

  • On-the-way: Be so good that they cannot ignore you. And they should know you are too good. How? Simple, network-communicate-socialize-blog. You need to show what you have got – other than your ‘resume’!
  • Straight-forward: Learn Automation. How? Pick up a tool, join classes, watch videos, read online and practice.
  • Exciting: Pick up a niche skill & start afresh. E.g. Python programming Or Security testing.

Requesting the QA community to put across your problem/ideas/solution/learning in the comments section. You never know it might help someone in need.

Stuck in Software Testing Career

Chitrakannan Balasubramanian | Senior Software Quality Assurance Engineer at Ondot Systems Inc

I completely agree. Just to add my point, while picking the tools to learn, we need to consider the future. The way I see it, with the introduction of Alexa, Google home, Siri etc. and the continuous improvement in ML and AI, soon websites and apps will be void. For example, if I want to buy a shirt, I might not have to search through the inventory of any online retailer. I might just have to say, Siri, I want to buy a shirt. Boom. Siri analyses my shopping patterns, the colors I like, the size that fits and it’ll project an image of me wearing a shirt( oh yes. It selects the shirt considering the brand I like and the reviews it has got). If I like it, I will say buy and it’ll place an order. Ha. Future looks exciting 🙂 the question is how we need to make our skills relevant in a rapidly (I don’t know any other adjective) growing tech market.

I know it is far fetching. But eventually we will be there.

Jaimin Shah | QA Engineer at Lodestone Software Services Pvt. Ltd.

I would like to share my personal experience over here. I’d faced lot many rejections and was frustrated, but I’m an optimist. Kept on learning and upgrading myself. I’m manual tester for more than 2 years and now as per demand of industry and pent chant for learning automation I’d started Selenium. It is pretty easy.

Also one of my friend suggested me Security Testing and prepare for CompTIA security+ certification if I want to go for security consulting. I’m also very good in requirements gathering and client co-ordination. So if you have technical and communication skills go for consulting or in BA. It’s a long term goal but definitely achievable.

Just need to keep abreast with industry standards and never ever worry about rejection. At least we will come to know where we lack behind and can prepare for that.

Anand Iyer | Principal Consultant-Trainer

The truth is that the industry doesn’t know what it really needs, and often at the ‘mercy’ of its interviewers, who are typically orthodox and far from ideal.

Now, if your vision of a career is for a much longer term (which often isn’t the case, quite understandably), don’t settle to learn a tool.  Automaton isn’t about tooling.  I’ve noticed certain comments here that say learning Selenium is easy.  That’s because it’s indeed easy.  But, don’t be under the impression that it’s going to help you be an automation engineer.  Because it won’t take you any farther than work through a few web pages.  If you indeed wish to secure yourself a longer-term and fruitful career, you must invest in learning to solve, learning to comprehend complexities, learning to simplify things.  All else will follow naturally.

DHAYANITHI PALANICHAMY | Technical Lead at Kuya technologies

Eventually, being a learner is always better than becoming an expert in any one domain. Horizontal digging is worth than vertical (at-least in software). 

Pranav Pasricha | Ensuring BUG free delivery since 9 years

And one more thing. I have seen manual guys learning and eager to work on Automation but don’t get support of their mentors. Even managers should also believe in these employees and should give them a chance rather than looking out in the market for such resources. At least one chance should be given. If they don’t meet their goals then they can take a decision as per their thinking.

Meeta Mukund Dayama | QA Tester at Secret Location| Freelance Software testing coach

Fair point well said Pranav. People run errands and end up as Jack of all master of none. I am glad that people see this as a problem too. Only 1/10th of people meet mentors those who are veterans or industrialist who have done seamless automation.

Anand Yadav

In. Net situation is different. There are multiple path and no path is perfect. I like your statement that after 5 years how recruiters selection criteria changes. This is happening with many of my friends of different technologies java, BI and others. Most common complaint is that interviews cleared but offer letter put on hold. Another funny aspect noted is when recruiters asks 8 year experience in a technology which arrived 4 years ago.

Ravi Thakare | Software Tester at ASK-EHS Engineering & Consultants PVT LTD

The only thing which bother me is, what would I do if I was hired for automation but working as manual all time. Afraid that it wouldn’t be too late to get back to automation.

Arpit Pattewar | I code to test | Ex-Qubole | Ex-Pubmatic

Very true! These days even automation tester needs to know lot of tools and scripting languages.

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