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60

As a tester, I can say that I'd prefer to work on a team with a high score on the Joel test. However, the Joel test doesn't necessarily cover some of the things that testers run into. I actually wrote a version of the Joel Test for testers. I didn't think I had the clout to call it the Alan Test, so I just called it the Test Test. Here's what's in it. The ...


37

You can ask people to test on a whiteboard too - draw up a sample dialog, or system, and ask them to discuss what ideas they'd have for testing. I really like Cem Kaner's approach to this. He goes into some detail about how he conducts test auditions - he tends to give two similar examples, with the first one as a practice run. I've found it very ...


28

Testing aptitude is a tricky thing, because testers do different kinds of things that all have their own kind of aptitude. There's a big difference between being a world-class tester and a key member of a world-class testing organization. For instance, I am considered by many who don't know me (but have heard of me) to be a great tester. And it's true that ...


23

In addition to what everyone else has said, it's absolutely realistic. With respect to what the hiring agencies are telling you, here are some reasons you could find difficulty convincing a developer that they want to be part of the test team: if your automation specialists are paid significantly less than your developers, you'll be asking any developer ...


19

This answer should be seen as a supplement to Bruce's answer. I wanted to add a few more notes that wouldn't fit well in a comment. A lot of the tools you already might use for unit testing will likely be useful - NUnit, mocking frameworks, etc. Books to read: "How we Test Software at Microsoft", "Beautiful Testing", "Lessons Learned in Software ...


19

We have several portions to our interviews: Here's a simple, well-known system anyone should know, we like to use elevators. Here is a very basic spec. Talk about some tests you'd run. We've written the spec so that anyone worth their salt should have a dozen questions about it. We want to see the different types of tests they come up with, not just the ...


14

I think the fundamental difference between the tester and the developer is the difference between synthesis and analysis. The developer synthesizes code. He builds up things, putting pieces together and figuring out fun and unique ways of combining those distinct little bits to do wonderful and amazing things. Testers are all about analysis. Once it has ...


13

In my experience, if you hire an "automator", you're going to get someone who can write code, but has no skill or desire to test. And that's fine if that's what you want. However, if you just want tips on how to hire a tester than can automate, then ask testing questions that have potential to be solved more efficiently with code. An example I use ...


13

There are plenty of testers who have learned to develop and there are also many testers who began their careers as developers. It is absolutely possible to find these kinds of people. There may be other hindrances however, such as availability in your area who have all of the skill-sets that you require, especially when it comes to specialized skill-sets. ...


12

I think it depends on what you want your testers do to. If working in a team environment and collaboration are key aspects of what your test team does, make them solve a testing problem with you. If you want them to write some automation or tools (or at least be able to if they're stuck), you may want to have them write some code (but have them write code to ...


12

A good test manager has a number of key attributes. I tend to think that the best managers are like good, professional sports coaches. They have played "the game", at the highest levels, they know what is required to be successful and achieve the results you are after. Translated, they should be a great tester themselves and be able to test hands on if ...


11

I came upon this idea because I find writing a sorting algorithm is much more exciting than testing it.Since testing it is just giving a set of values and verifying the result.Anybody can do that.But,writing algorithms not many can do. No, don't seek a test architect's position. If this is truly how you feel, you should strive to be in ...


11

"I'd mainly just like to know how all this sounds" This all sounds pretty good to me! A few thoughts: You say that you are a former developer. What are you doing now? Tune up your thoughts on "why I want to make this career change". This will almost certainly be a point you will need to convey well during every interview. Career changes are a break ...


11

Palindromes testing is very representative in terms of QA way of thinking. Moreover, writing tests dramatically increase the quality of task specification. When a QA engineer writes test cases, it well may happen that certain case is not covered in initial specs. This is a good reason for QA to come up with idea to improve those specs. So, when you are ...


11

Could I suggest learning to test before diving into tools to automate tests and tools to manage them ? Read the books you have got, surf this site (and others such as Software Testing Club and SQA forums ) to get an idea of what people in the industry are doing and what problems they are facing.


10

Firstly, currently being ranked #1 on this site shows that you already have a good idea abou the basics and would get most positions based on what you know already. :-) The exact tools that you are going to use would vary job-to-job dependent on technology, so I would actually research and find the tools that you want to use, gain experience in those and ...


10

"I believe one contributing factor is a matter of perspective, that a great tester approaches software in a different way than a developer." I agree! And I think that's one of the primary factors which allows testers to add significant value. Here's something I wrote a while back: In my experience, developers tend to be optimistic folks, while testers ...


10

It depends on what you want your tester to do. I do think it is a skill that is worth paying more money for, but I'd rather have a passionate, skilled tester than one that reads code for most positions. Having at least one tester who can read (and preferably write) code is a very handy thing. At the one end, you have testers who can use automation tools ...


10

Yes, its realistic to find these folks. They form the majority of the teams that I've lead. You may want to adjust the title to be Software Engineer in Test, or just Software Engineer. In my org, the pay scale, and prestige for the software engineers in test are the same as software developers.


9

For the most part, I've gotten by with running simple SELECT queries with various WHERE filters. With my current position, though, I'm finding that adding more complex JOINs are necessary to really get what I need out of the database. I think you are answering your own question here. Basically - "it depends". Sometimes the position requires just a ...


9

I would think that one thing you'll need to work on is changing your mindset. I have never been a coder/developer, but I do realize we think & approach a project in different ways. As Carmi said, be curious & ask questions, but remember it isn't our job to fix the problem. We can provide suggestions and ideas but ultimately the decision on what ...


9

Some folks will admire your initiative and skill. Others may be annoyed, depending on whether the bugs you find relate to their day-to-day concerns. In either case, unless you know what concerns plague the people who will receive your bug list, there's a chance that your testing will not relate closely to what's on their minds. If that happens, your ...


9

Yes, it's certainly realistic to find such folks. I am one, and I've hired many. What is more difficult (and might be what the Agencies are saying), is to convince a current developer to become a tester. That sort of career change is a challenge, as is any career change. But there are many, many testers with automation experience who used to be developers ...


8

Testers too can build up portfolios of projects they may have worked on and prospective employers might carry out testing tests to determine the level of their abilities. When I'm hiring testers, the most important part is a grasp of concepts. A "virtual portfolio" which demonstrates your grasp of concepts would let you show specific instances where you ...


8

I agree with testerab that Cem Kaner, in his PDF, has outlined a good approach to hiring. Paul Carvalho also has a good PDF called Hiring Software Testers in an Information Age that he published in 2007. Besides conducting the interview, you as the interviewer should look for common attributes, be able to skim through resumes, identify the school of ...


8

Although I completely agree with TristaanOgre's answer, I do have another piece to add. Developer's are often (even if they don't realize it), emotional attached to their code. They've spent hours/days/weeks, sometimes years putting it together. They have taken what someone wanted and (normally) crafted those requirements into a working, and often elegant ...


8

The ability to read and understand code is a useful attribute for all testers (in my opinion), and a strict requirement for some tester roles. But whether it is a good requirement for hiring new testers or just a nice-to-have depends solely on the needs of the specific position.


8

I am not expert in search engines, but there are many factors that contribute to how search results are displayed. The query is is essentially the starting point, and how the engine parses the query is important. Also some search engines will 'refactor' the query based on natural langauge algorithms. The order of returned results is often dependent on ...


8

I've been at companies where someone transitioned from another dept into a Testing / QA position and it was done intra-company. They found a position open, called the department manager and impressed him/her enough to get hired - without much experience. Does your current company provide that opportunity for you? It might be an easy way in. Like Phil K says ...


8

If I was being interviewed and was asked this question, first of all i would start off by trying to quench my curiosity. How much time do i have? What type of a toaster is it? How much power limit does it operate on as per the vendor? Does the vendor provide any user manual or claims documentation? How does it work? Is it timer based or manual toaster? ...



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