Finding and Developing Good Software Testers: Lessons from a Testing Startup

Th8     Start Time : 11:00     End Time : 11:45

Talk Abstract:

Doing testing well requires having enough people with the right skills and knowledge. But the challenges facing software testers are growing and at the same it seems to be getting harder to get sufficient talent into IT as a whole, never mind into software testing.
I feel I have been trying to meet these challenges throughout my software testing career, but most especially so in the last five years whilst founding and managing a software testing business. I would like to share the experiences and lessons I have learned not only from delivering testing services but also from building a company.

Whilst changing from being a software tester into a businessman, I have gained skills and knowledge in Brand Development, Recruitment, Human Resources, and Leadership Development. I have seen how these can be powerful tools to motivate more of the right people into testing, spot the people who have what it takes to become good software testers, and support and promote their long-term development to keep their skills and knowledge relevant.

From a testing delivery point of view, we have recognized the need to extend a tester’s range beyond hard testing skills and knowledge to include communication and leadership skills and to help them develop their emotional intelligence. Today’s testers are also increasingly required to be T-shaped people, with understanding of software development and the ability to work with technology and tools to help them to do their job both quickly and thoroughly. Therefore, we also need to introduce them to the principles of system architecture, coding, and provide them the skills to be able to work with the various types of tool available.

Finally, the most important thing I have learned in my professional and business career is the importance of having a growth mindset. To grow as a person or a company you need to be able to admit that there are things that you don’t do as well as you could and many things that you still have to learn.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Skills and knowledge learned from founding and managing a start-up would have helped me build better testing teams in the past
  2. The challenges facing testers can be met with the help of professional development that not only deals with developing technological skills but also soft skills
  3. A growth mindset is key to working well

 

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  • Speaker

  • Phil Royston - CEO , tesena s.r.o, Czech Republic

    Having wandered reluctantly into IT about 30 years ago, my first contact with formal testing came unexpectedly in 2002 when I was told that I would be the Test Manager on the project I was working on. Maybe it was fate, but it seems I found my true calling. Or maybe my fate was to become the guy they called when there was a “problem in testing”. Whilst fire-fighting on troubled projects I began to tire and wonder if there wasn’t a better way. So five years ago I co-founded a testing start-up in Prague with a mission to change the testing world by making it work better.

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