Just Starting As a Tester? Seven Key Skills to Perfect

There are many difficulties and challenges when beginning any career. However, the limitations and challenges depend on our mindset. To excel at anything, we must learn, research, practice, and never give up. Repeat, repeat, repeat. But what sets apart a good tester and a great tester? As you grow in your career, it is important to remember the following:

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1. Testing = Mission Critical

Eat, sleep, and breathe testing. The quality of a product is determined by the quality of its testing phase and can have disastrous outcomes if rushed or skipped. In critical fields such as air traffic control, the presence of bugs in a software application can cause irreparable losses. Testers must be aware that the quality of product is utmost importance, and be the advocate for the testing process.

2. Be Passionate

The key to success in any work is having true passion. Why is passion so important for testers? It gives you inspiration to find creative ways to overcome challenges in your work. That passion is what helps a sometimes repetitive process stay exciting, day after day.

3. Be a Team Player

Professional testers must be team players. They need to be able to work together with other members to gain the best quality for product, both within their own team and across departments. Teamwork also means sharing experiences and learning from other testers.

4. Communicate

Often, testers are responsible for communicating quality problems directly to an executive team, and must be able to speak in both technical and non-technical terms depending on the audience. As you interact with management, developers, and other project stakeholders, it helps to be clear and concise in your communication. As a company grows, you must also be able to communicate with other team members across the globe. Strong written and verbal skills are necessary to compete in today’s job market.

5. Adapt and Learn

Technology changes at a break-neck pace, making it imperative that testers can adapt to constantly changing requirements. A great tester learns new technologies quickly and applies them to projects to meet customer needs.

6. Understand Multiple Testing Methodologies

In testing, there are many methodologies and techniques including manual testing, automated testing, security testing, and performance testing. Every company and project might use a different methodology, so its critical that a great tester understands how to apply these techniques.

7. Analyze and Critique

Great analytical skills help break up a complicated system into smaller units to create corresponding test cases. A tester should be able to think outside of the box to see a bug differently or from a new perspective. Finally, they have to be highly critical to identify potential problem areas.

Remember, a successful tester never stops growing as our industry is constantly changing. Becoming a great tester takes time, but if you are willing to identify the areas you need to grow, and the skills you need to nurture, you will find yourself among the best.


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