Phunshuk Wangdu* (name changed) wrote to me this few years back in my Orkut Scrap book.
Hi Friend, Actually I am working in a call centre in technical support Division. Work is related to maintenance. I passed out with electronics from an REC in 2003. But looking the family conditions I have to join whatever got that time. With a bond on 2 years. Now I managed to setup my family and want to come in real field. I come to know from my friends about software testing, which an emerging field and easy to get into. I also have done Software testing course of 2 months from xxx training institute. In my present field there is not so growth, and moreover I have to work as a technician. There are not vacancies for fresher or they prefer 2006/07 pass outs. Dear friend can you advise me? Should I apply as a fresher or with showing 2 years of experience in software testing? In this case, will company investigate my past? I have not made my resume yet. Please advise me how to get a job in Software Testing. I have taken the firm decision to change my field. Looking for a job at Delhi. Thanks again.”…..
And there are so many Phunshuk Wangdus in today’s IT industry, especially in software testing. People think software testing as a launch pad to IT industry, easy, and not requiring hardcore technical, coding, system knowledge etc. It is not. Software testing is not an easy job. It requires skills to find defects in software, ability to think beyond the obvious, think in different ways. Doing a 2 months theoretical course is not enough to become a software tester. Developers write codes, testers find defects. It is similar to student writing paper and professor checking them. Testers are the guardians of the product. They are responsible for software’s quality. It is well said that “testers do not make software, they make it better.”
So here are some advices for Phunshuk Wangdu and etc:
1. Yes it is very easy to use software testing as launch pad to IT industry, but it is equally difficult to keep flying if you do not have the real skill. It is very easy to clear interview, but equally tough to do the real work.
2. If you show 2 years (fake) experience, most of the companies will do a background check. If you are caught, you are black listed.
3. Doing a course in software testing is good. But do not assume that the training provider will get you a job. It all depends on your skill. Do not listen to fake promises by training institutes.
4. Learn skills that are required to be a tester. Talk to the experienced people who are in the same profession. Keep your eyes, ears open. Learn about the new technologies. Read ISTQB books. This will improve your knowledge on the standard testing terminology.
5. Enhance your reasoning ability. Try to think every possible thing in different ways. If you are a fresher, download some beta version software and test it. Read more about Beta Testing. Compare your results with other fellows testing the beta software. If you find some bugs, mention them in your resume.
6. Be honest. Say that you are a fresher in software testing. But mention that you have work experience (Call center technical support in Phunshuk Wangdu’s case). Prepare a valid reason why you want to join IT industry. Don’t say growth opportunity. Show your passion for software testing.
7. You will eventually become a technician if you do not have skills. To achieve growth (in any industry), you have to be proactive, prove your skill and perform better than the team. This is same in IT industry as well as in BPOs.
At the end, anyone who is hard working, smart working, skilled and honest will lift the cup. Prepare yourself. Don’t be knocked down by your past. You have a war in future to be won.
There are no short cuts on how to get a job in Software Testing. My best wishes to all those who want to be a software tester.