Looking for your next testing role? With decades of CV-browsing experience, a specialist IT recruiter shows how to turbo-charge your software tester CV.
Are you on the look out for your next software testing job? Whether you’re new to the profession or armed with years of experience, crafting the ultimate CV to help you land that next role is rarely an easy feat.
From your education and certifications to your experience and employment, there is a lot of essential information that IT recruiters and employers will be looking for from your CV. Ensuring that all of these essentials are positioned up-front and centre could make all the difference to your career prospects.
Having co-run a specialist IT recruitment agency for nearly 30 years, I’ve seen it all (and then some) when it comes to CVs – the good, the bad and the ugly. Hopefully these pointers will help you when it comes to perfecting your software testing CV. Look at it as a sort of ‘recruiter’s perspective’ as it were.
Let’s get stuck in…
1) Certification – ISTQB, ISEB, etc.
Your certifications are amongst the most important details to share on your software tester CV (Most commonly known are the ISTQB certifications). They are an easy reference to show that you work within best practice guidelines, deliver quality consistently and have attained a certain level of experience and expertise. There are a wide range of qualifications out there, depending on your skill level, specialist area and certification body, so make sure your certificates reflect what you’re capable of professionally and position them to appear prominently on your CV.
2) Systems tested – e.g. banking, insurance, etc.
Not all systems function in the same way, which means that if you’re applying for a role in a specific industry, highlighting your specialist subject is very important. From media and finance, to healthcare, telecommunications and transport, make sure you clearly state your key area of expertise (if it is relevant) and highlight any connected experience to help get your foot in the door. If you don’t tell them, you can’t expect them to guess.
3) Software tested – e.g. Java, PHP, Oracle
Don’t forget to include the different programming languages that you can debug on your CV. You may not be able to programme fluently in these languages, but if you can competently test them and pinpoint any bugs, then these capabilities need to be listed to show off your competence and suitability.
4) Levels of testing – e.g. unit, integration, systems, smoke, etc.
It’s also important to highlight the levels of testing that you are capable of conducting and have experience of running. Whether that’s smoke testing (also known as build verification testing), rigorous unit testing or wider systems testing, make sure you clearly state your abilities to show potential employers that you’re the right person for their role.
5) Type of testing – automated, manual
Can you run automated software tests? What about manual software tests? How about both? In most cases employers will be searching for a candidate who can handle both testing types, so be sure to list both capabilities and provide evidence that supports both skills.
6) Software used to perform tests – e.g. Selenium, SQL, etc.
Which software testing tools can you work with to ensure quality, fix problems and identify issues? Your CV should clearly list all the pieces of software that you have had experience with, from Selenium to SQL – the wider your experience and the more tools you’re comfortable with, the more opportunities will be open to you.
7) Experience with certain software tools – e.g. TestLodge
It might also be worth mentioning which software testing tools you use or have used in the (recent) past. So if you use test case management software and you have experience using TestLodge or a similar alternative, then it’s worth noting it. It might be the case that the employer – and your future manager/colleagues – also use that tool, which could be yet another added incentive to hire you over somebody else.
Make sure that you read job descriptions carefully and ascertain which software types your prospective employer most frequently uses in order to place the programs most relevant to them at the top of your list, right under their nose!