Testlio Changes the Game

There’s a small company out of Estonia that is making a big splash in the world of software testing.  Testlio was founded after CEO Kristel Kruustük was on the team that won the 2012.  A September 15th 2017 article by zdnet.com does a profile of the CEO and the company to provide insight on the software testing company’s mission and outlook on testing (http://www.zdnet.com/article/how-testilio-wants-to-rethink-software-testing/).  The CEO Kruustük worked at several companies around the world and noticed flaws that she saw within the software testing community.  Kruustük and her company take a different approach to their hires and their view toward junior level testers.  Testlio has found that companies that had strong diversity in their employees also had a clear improvement in their productivity.  Testlio has implemented this diversity hiring practice at their own company and have found the same increase in productivity.  Another practice that Testlio follows is putting more emphasis on junior level testers and move away from senior testers.  While Testlio has aggressively embraced this outlook on hiring youth it may not be what most people think..  Kruustük goes on to explain that this is not necessarily just the age of the tester or how long the tester has been in the business, but staying away from testers that have been in the same position and are less willing to try different methods or take advice from outside sources.  Kruustük and Testlio does not see testing as just a mundane task that has to be done, but instead as its own separate business.  This mentality has allowed Kruustük to grow Testlio into a business that has two offices, one in San Francisco and the other in Tallinn.  They also have 200 testers that work with roughly 650 million monthly users.  With the number of users and testers that Testlio has it is hard to deny that their unique approach to testing and employment process yields significant results and is part of a sustainable business model.  Testlio is a new company that is embracing junior testers that it’s found are more open to new ideas and thinking outside of the box.  I have a feeling that Testlio is a company that will continue to grow as they open their doors to a younger more diverse workforce.  They will soon become a very common name in the industry and I think will be a pioneer for a new outlook on testing, embracing diversity, and constantly bringing in new talent to their ranks.

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Software Tester Characteristics

This week I read a blog post from TestLodge talking about the characteristics that make up a good software tester.  The post found at https://blog.testlodge.com/characteristics-good-software-tester/ helps identify some of the attributes that a tester should have in order to be proficient in their testing as well as excel in their career.  I chose this post because it provided a different perspective than most.  As a student initially learning these skills I often get too focused on how to do different testing procedures and sometimes forget to look at why I’m doing them and what purpose do they have. Articles and posts like this help me to take a timeout and look beyond the skill set that I’m trying to acquire to help put me in the right state of mind.  The post breaks it down into 13 different characteristics.  Characteristics like testers have to be a strong communicator and be a team player.  This is good to remember, especially early on in our careers, so that we don’t ignore failed tests or improperly communicate what failed in the software to the rest of the development team and let an inferior product be released simply because we were to scared of upsetting someone by telling them part of the code is wrong.  Other characteristics like thinking creatively and paying attention to details.  These attributes will help us examine closer what the goal of the test that we need to write is and think outside the box in order to write the most effective test.  We need to be able to realize that just because we did a test a certain way in class for a project one time, that may not be the best way to write the test every time.  A good tester should also be organized and should meet deadlines.  Time management is crucial in the software development process.  Staying organized with all your tools, notes, and team communications will allow you to complete more tests.  It will also help you keep track of your deadlines and prioritize your tests so that way you are not delivering a product late of missing important tests and creating too many tests for less important features.  I felt like this post is good to revisit from time to time so that I don’t get too focused on just trying to write a perfect test and develop a broader skill set that allows me to recognize the right approach to each situation and to stay organized without rushing into a project and failing from the start.

Six Pitfalls In Testing

A recent blog post I read is entitled “Six Things That Go Wrong With Discussions About Testing”.  It is a post from August 27, 2017 on James Bach’s blog http://www.satisfice.com/blog/ .  In it James Bach talks about six big pitfalls that developers fall into when thinking about and talking about testing.  I chose this blog post because after reading it the information stuck with me.  He takes a step back from testing and writing tests and talks more about how to effectively test.  I thought it was a good topic that a lot of testers and developers overlook.  The first point is that people care too much about the number of test cases and losing focus on writing effective test cases.  This is a sound piece of advise to remember especially in college before getting too far into a career in software development; it’s more important to write a few strong tests than to write a lot of weak tests.  The second is that people treat a test as an object rather than an event.  This one interested me a lot.  It’s a good way to look at tests.  A test isn’t just an object, it is an activity and no test will be the same between two testers.  The third topic he talks about is when testers can’t describe their test strategy.  It’s a good reminder that as testers we need to constantly reevaluate our testing strategies and adjust it as necessary.  When we don’t step back and check ourselves we stop progressing.  The fourth point is that people talk about testing as if it is an automated process.  When we do that as testers it removes the human aspect of creating the tests.  This creates a division between testers and the tests.  We start to stop taking responsibility when a test doesn’t go right and that responsibility is important to have in order to learn from mistakes in testing and get better.  The fifth is when people talk as though there is only one kind of test coverage.  Even if a tester develops their own style and favors one type of test coverage during their career, it is important to remember that there are many kinds and a tester should keep them in the back of his mind so they can be ready to switch to the most effective kind depending on the situation.  The final pitfall is when people talk about testing as if it is static.  This is a fundamental concept that, in my opinion, should apply to almost all aspects in life.  When you think you are done improving then you are.  A good tester needs to always be open to new ideas and ways of doing things.  That mentality helps a tester to improve and avoid becoming stagnant. Which fits perfectly since thats the idea behind this assignment of blog posts.