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6 Skills You Need to Become a Software Tester

According to software tester Rohit Sharma, innovation, representation, documentation, communication, negotiation, and estimation are vital to being a good tester.

· Agile Zone

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If you're coming into the software testing field and planning to build up a career as a software testing professional, then you've come to the right place. In my opinion, a Testing Professional should possess (or practice) certain qualities. Day by day, these qualities become sharper through more practice, experience, and learning from various situations. I will go through the importance each of these terms one by one.

1. Innovation

Testing is a job that involves a lot of breaking and entering! You have to break the rules. To break the rules, you have to think on several paths. For example, regarding a bug, you have thought of Path A, Path B,  and Path C. However, Path D may be the most important one! As a testing professional, you have to be innovative so that you don’t miss any important scenario.

2. Representation

You have to have the capability to represent your findings properly. For example, while testing an online shopping system, you found that after successful checkout, the inventory is not reducing and you report the issue as “Checkout is not working.” Trust me: this is misleading information. People don’t have time to find out the real meaning of your reported bug.

3. Documentation

This related to representation in many ways. Good documentation skills will help you in proper sentence organization to choose the right term in right place, so it’s very important to practice this quality. This skill will enhance day by day as much as you practice. There is a term called bug advocacy; this is what a tester must practice. The impressive skill of documentation is a must for better bug advocacy.

4. Communication

This is very important for a testing guy. You must have the power to sell your reported bugs. You have to have a confident attitude during communicating with others and must have crystal clear idea about what you are pointing. Whenever a person cannot understand your reported scenario, you have explained the scenario in such a manner so that she or he can understand it within a very short time.

5. Negotiation

Sometimes, you have to negotiate about your reported scenario. This is probably not a vital issue at this moment, but may have impacts in long run. Don’t argue with developers. Rather, come to a decision. The approach may affect how they interpret your opinion and make a decision. That’s how a team works, actually! You have been able to negotiate depending on the context, the nature of bugs, the impact, and so on.

6. Estimation

Sometimes, this skill becomes very important. The skill of proper estimation will help to go further in the career. Whenever any task is assigned, your superior will ask you about your plan to execute the task and the estimated time required. If the difference between your estimation and the actual is huge, then you’ll be asked for an explanation. If this continues to happen again and again, then management will lose confidence on you. It is very important to work on this skill each and every chance that you get to estimate.

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Topics:
software testers ,career ,agile

Published at DZone with permission of Rohit Sharma. See the original article here.

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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