Preparing for your next software testing interview requires preparation throughout your career. Here are some tips to help you take the long view.
As software testers, it is our responsibility to apply various techniques and methods to an application as we work on the different stages of a project lifecycle. The more experience and understanding we have, will be when the time comes to apply for other roles in the software testing industry.
Getting Started with the CV
Let’s start with the CV first. It should be immaculate at every level because it is the only marketing tool that will be used to sell your skills as you apply to be called for an interview. It is also a good idea to amend your CV to highlight particular skills and experience according to the job description, as this can help you further in getting a call for an interview.
Understand the Job Requirements
When you find a software tester job post that catches your attention, read it carefully to assess if you would be a good fit and to see if it matches your skills and experience. Make sure you know if it calls for manual testing, automation testing, or both so you can be more focused in your preparation.
During the interview, you are likely to be asked about testing concepts, especially manual testing and the associated methodologies, so a good approach is to brush up on your understanding ahead of time. It is also essential to know – along with having a practical example to call on – which techniques, methods, or concepts are used at which stages of the Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC).
Not all testing concepts will apply to our own work or domain, and only a few of them will be related to our professional experience, but it is recommended to have some knowledge of all practices in software testing to help you to answer interview questions. It’s a professional necessity to keep yourself updated on developments happening in our industry so you can keep yourself ahead of the game. Also, knowledge you gain outside your working life can be useful in helping you answer unexpected questions. What if the interviewer asks a question about ETL testing on which you never worked? Having a basic understanding of the concepts will give you the edge and show that you are capable of working in other domains.
A characteristic trait of a tester is that they think out of the box as they are working with a sense of mission to achieve the objectives. This means that software tester should not follow the traditional methods all the time. They need to try new things, such as automate their test cases, try to simulate the end-user environment, and explore the application with the aim of breaking it. The more insight you gain while testing the applications, the more you can answer the questions in depth.
The complex nature of applications and the rapid advances in tools and technologies demand new skills other than just testing. It is a value-added advantage for a tester if they have hands-on skills in writing SQL queries and know about database concepts. Among other skills, it is good to have an understanding and practice of scripting language to perform automation testing.
Many organizations prefer candidates who have value-added skills to perform end-to-end testing by not only doing UI checks, but to check too for databases to verify the internal workings of the application under test.
Being able to analyze is useful within the interview process. The interviewer will try to learn if a candidate is capable enough to find the root cause of a problem, or to gauge how competent they might be in handling a situation if it arises. Try to prepare well for the analytical part of the interview because interviewers can learn a lot about how a candidate could fit into the team by how they respond to this section of the interview.
It is important to note that your CV should match your personality. Interviewers regularly ask questions based on the content of your CV. Do not claim to have worked in an area where you have not because it will damage the impression you are trying to make, and it can hurt your chances of being selected. Also, do not assume that the interviewer has a QA background, because you can be interviewed by perhaps a developer, team lead, or project manager. If you do not know the answer to a question, be honest in how you respond.