Attention to details
If you ask ten testers to test something on each test, you will typically see a mixed number of defects found. This will continue to be the case if all testers had exactly the same testing experience and knowledge. This is often due to how focused the evaluator is when looking at something (attention to detail). While at first glance something may look fine, if you look more closely, flaws can be seen. Attention to detail is what makes a great tester stand out from a good tester.
During the daily tasks that a software tester has, there will invariably come a time when the tester will need to converse with others, most often with software developers. When talking to a developer about a bug they found, the tester should always keep in mind that, in essence, they are finding flaws in that developer’s work. Diplomacy skills are a key asset for any software tester as they are critical to building and maintaining a healthy working relationship with the development team. A bad relationship between software testers and developers can negatively impact any software development and pose unnecessary risk to the project.
Software testers working for outsourced QA companies will often find themselves switching between a wide variety of projects, which today can include web, mobile, smart, and wearable products. Being able to improve a product saves precious time during the development life cycle. Sometimes it will be necessary to test software that does not have documentation. Therefore, the software tester must be able to explore the software and quickly extract the information it needs. This key information can be used to create a test plan, a set of test cases, or a quality control estimate.
It is easy to spot software testers who are passionate about the software they are testing. They generally find more flaws and show enthusiasm during meetings not only for the product they are testing, but also for software testing in general. Customers are much more likely to rehire software testers who are excited about your product. On the other hand, non-enthusiastic software testers quickly stand out and it invariably shows in the quality of their QA work.
A great software tester can see the product in its entirety and adopt the mindset of the target audience. This skill is extremely useful for reporting issues that end users might otherwise encounter after product launch. Another aspect of business orientation is the ability to understand why a certain functionality is being introduced and apply this knowledge to your tests. This information can improve the tests that are being performed and provide a richer set of results. An evaluator must also be able to appreciate that deadlines need to be met (and as is often the case) can result in a reduced amount of time for quality control. Being flexible and understanding the business impact of a release deadline is extremely important to the test team’s relationship with the rest of the product stakeholders.
There are no specific criteria for what makes the best software in the world, as each company or project may have a different requirement or goal as to what they want the software tester to achieve. Our QA team’s experience testing a wide variety of software products for clients around the world has given us a great understanding of what kind of testers we needed to make those projects a success.