Have you ever wandered how the most interesting people in testing world started their way? Or- what was the biggest challenges they had to face?
So make yourself a cup of coffee and read a short interview with these people!
These are the 5 questions we asked:
5 Testing questions with Derk-Jan de Grood
The first tester that answered our questions is no other than Derk-Jan de Grood-
Derk-Jan is a senior test manager and agile leader at Valori. He loves to share his accumulated knowledge and experience to help improve testing world. He wrote several successful books, has is own blog and regularly writes articles. In 2014 he won the EuroSTAR testing excellence award..
These are his answers to our questions:
- How did you start your way in the testing world?
I graduated in physics, and had little to do with IT when I entered the job market. Like many colleagues I became a Tester by coincidence. But, I think many of the things I wanted to do, back then fit the role of a tester. So although I shifted form Material Sciences towards IT systems. I still do what I wanted to do most, working in multidisciplinary teams towards a solution that is rewarding. Nowadays I’d call that value creation of course, but If you want to know more about how I envisioned my career, you can read my column: A vacuum cleaner for $100.
2. How were you prepared for your first job?
For my first assignment I had only very basic training but since I was the only tester on the block I got a lot of time and opportunities to figure out how to test the system we were developing. I think nowadays we have much better training, like ISTQB, CAT etc. So the profession has certainly grown. But I have to sat, Although I learned a lot since then and moved more toward setting up test strategies, I think I did some pretty good test design back then.
3. In your opinion, what are the biggest challenges & opportunities for testers today?
I think testing gets more widespread, the systems get more complex and testing needs to become more technical in order to speed up. The widening can found in extra test sorts that are really important, like security and performance, in the systems we are testing. E.g Mobile, Cloud, embedded, etc. But do not forget about IoT and Artificial Intelligence that will introduce a many new testing challenges. Testers will have to choose their specialism in order to stand out. Furthermore, we need to test more effective, so test automation, service virtualization, data management and development skills become more and more a standard requisite. Although this seems to drive testers into development, we hook up with business more than ever. Participation in refinement and stretching testing towards business testing will open new doors for the profession. The bad news is, it can be a little bit overwhelming and we are forced to make choices and specialize ourselves in the one thing or the other. The good news is, there is a lot of interesting work to be done.
4. What is the one piece of advice you would give to any tester starting his way today?
In alignment with my previous answer, I would advise starting testers to look around, gain versatile experiences with doing various test jobs. Try to learn what adds value and what thrills you. Try to specialize and be good in that area without losing the connection with the developments in the other facets of our profession. I often talk with testers about the π-shape tester (See link). The π-shape is an extension of the T-shaped professional. The horizontal represents the generic skills and knowledge, the first leg represents your testing knowledge and the 2nd leg your specialism, e.g test automation or IoT
5. How do you believe the software testing world will look like in 5-10 years? What will be different and what will be the same?
That’s a real tough question developments are fast and disruptive. I guess we will use new means for inputs and outputs, and the type of devices we test will change a lot. Therefore, the way we test them technically will change dramatically. Some of that is already there, like voice control and IA. Some say that making and combining the basic system component will become very easy, so we can expect a shift from component testing towards business testing. Others talks about self-repairing systems. One thing for sure, as systems become more integrated in our daily lives, more self-supporting and when these systems make more decisions for us, ethical aspects become more relevant. In the end we will need to trust our systems. Checks and tests are part of that, one way or the other.
Stay tuned for our next 5 testing questions with… Mike Sparks