Becoming a Quality Assurance and Software Testing Beginner.
“You can learn new things at any time in your life if you’re willing to be a beginner. If you actually learn to like being a beginner, the whole world opens up to you”
~~ Barbara Shur
“There are two mistakes one can make along the road to truth… not going all the way and not starting”
Now I’m not exactly a big fan of Buddha quotes but you have to admit that sometimes that nigga was spittin - respectfully of course😶.
Starting a new phase in your life can be terrifying and exciting at the same time. The unending what-ifs, the question as to whether or not it’s the right thing to do, the possible imposters syndrome that makes you question whether that path isn’t just for people with “special talent” and you’re just wasting your time and money, why do we have to go through so much anxiety just because we want to achieve something? I hate it honestly.
However, something that has stuck with me for a while is this phrase, “You miss 99% of the shots you don’t take, so why don’t you just reduce those odds by trying?🤷🏾♀️”. Over time, this helped me every time I was too scared or worried about a decision I was making, and basically, this led me to the beginning of my software testing journey.
For a lot of people that are not really in the tech community, or just know the normal basic everyday tech stuff, allow me to introduce you to the world of QA and software testing.
Think of a tester as an examiner or a reviewer basically, we can call them detectives or inspectors of software, where the criminals are the errors (called bugs) that they have to catch to make the software in an optimum state for the users. They are the people that test every feature of whatever the software might be, could be a website, a web app, a mobile app, basically anything. Currently, I’ve only been focused on being able to test web apps and websites but as a beginner obviously I’m still growing.
I think it’s important to note that you don’t need to be a programmer or to have insane programming skills to become a software tester. One of the really good software testers I follow on Twitter used to be a cleaner, another one that I know personally is still in university studying microbiology. So it’s actually something anyone can just pick up and start learning (and there’s money in it oh, tech money 😉😏)
Funny enough before I knew it was an actual part of tech, I always asked my developer friends to send their apps or links of what they’re building for me to test and assess (I should have charged them now that I think about it😒) and I’d send a detailed document of what I thought the errors were and what would make it better. Until one day, one of my “regular customers” asked if he should put a word in for me to his boss at his office to join the software testing team as an intern in the company. Of course, as per imposter syndrome, I said no immediately (stupid…I know), that I was under-qualified and I don’t really know anything and bla bla bla yeah… basically I gave a lot of excuses and he dropped it. Then a month after that I saw this flyer for an offer to become a software testing ambassador of a company called Testify and they were about to run a paid course to teach people testing!! If I’m being honest I was a bit skeptical about it, plus the money looked like a lot at the time, but again it was an opportunity I didn’t want to pass by.
Fast forward, the course had 2 phases, manual testing phase, and automated testing phase. Personally, for me, I think most people that visit websites a lot; which is like half of the general population, would excel at manual testing . Why? Because it mostly involves mainly critical thinking and documenting the tests you’re running. For example “The website should have a signup button” is a test case. Now I’m not saying software testing is a walk in the park (lol…don’t even think about it) but it really is something I think people should get into and explore. Don’t let anyone, including yourself, discourage you.
I’d appreciate any comments and questions you may have about this. You can also follow me on Twitter (Here) for more QA and software testing content.