How to fast-track your career as a software QA engineer

Seven Peaks Software QA Team

Considering a new career path in software testing and quality assurance (QA)? Let’s hear directly from the experienced QA team of Seven Peaks Software ‘what is a software qa?’, ‘what does a software qa do?’ and ‘how to be a software quality assurance engineer?’

What is software quality assurance testing?

Software QA (Software Quality Assurance) is a process to avoid mistakes and consequently prevent any potential problems in all software engineering processes, activities, methods in a project. To put it simply, a Software QA’s job is to test how well software or an application works, how well it performs, how easy it is to use, and how safe it is.

Why is software testing necessary?

People naturally make mistakes. That’s a good enough answer for the question ‘Why is software testing necessary?’ Here are a few advantages you can find for testing software before deliver it to your customer:

  • Properly tested software ensures high-performance software operation
  • Developing a high-quality product for the final consumer is the goal.
  • The process can decrease critical of issue on production like defects or bugs
  • So it makes the software more reliable and easy to use
  • High-quality software product will save time and money
QA meetup 25/05/22

Software tester vs Software QA

You might have heard about these two words ‘software tester’ and ‘software QA’. Are these two titles interchangeable?

As time goes on, the meanings of two distinct names can become blurred, making it difficult to tell them apart. In this case, it’s the same. They are often used interchangeably, but the responsibilities they entail are vastly different.

  Tester Software QA
The way to work Manual/Automation Manual/Automation
  • Execute following test case
  • Report bug that found in software
  • Execute following test case
  • Improve and develop for the quality
  • Objective Find out bug and increase critical bug
  • Deliver high quality of product following Software QA process
  • Prevent bug that will be happen in software
  • Focus on end user’s satisfy with quality and user experience
  • Result Release software with bug less Release software with high quality

    From the table above, you will see that there are huge differences between these two roles, especially in their responsibilities, objectives, and the result they deliver.

    The software tester is responsible for detecting bugs before users do. Their investigations are then used to generate reports on the software’s performance. In QA, on the other hand, they are more concerned with controlling the product’s life cycle. They have to confirm that the software meets the quality standards or customer agreements specified by the company or organization.

    Quick go-through fundamentals of software testing activities

    1. Test plan

    Test plan is a detailed document that describes:

    • The objective of testing
    • The scope of testing
    • The detailed schedule of the activities you want to perform
    • The resources needed such as human and technical.

    Importance of test plan

    • It helps people outside the test team such as business managers, developers, and customers to get to the point of a project testing.
    • Test Plan guides our thinking.
    • Important aspects like test estimation, test scope are documented in the Test Plan.

    2. Test cases

    A Test Case is a set of actions executed to verify a particular feature or functionality of your software application. A test case consists of:

    • Test Case #
    • Test Case Description
    • Test Data
    • Test Steps
    • Expected Results
    • Actual Results
    • Test Result

    The focus of a test engineer is to compare expected & actual results.

    Sample of good test cases

    Test Case # Descriptions Test Data Expected Results Actual Results Test Result
    1 Check response when valid email & Password is entered

    Password: 1234590!

    Login should be successful Login is successful Pass
    2 Check response when valid email & Password is entered

    Password: 1234590!

    Login should be successful Login is not successful Fail
    3 Check customer login with valid data

    Password: 12390ki14

    User should log in into application

    As expected Pass
    4 Check customer login with invalid data

    Password: 123908!4a

    User should not log in into application

    As expected Pass

    Example of bad test cases

    1. Bring up search-and-replace
    2. Enter a lowercase word from the document in the search term field.
    3. Enter a mixed-case word
    Expected Results
    1. Verify that the lowercase word has been replaced with the mixed-case term in lower case

    3. Test scenarios

    A Test Scenario is a statement describing the functionality of the application to be tested. A single test scenario can cover one or more test cases.

    Test Scenario Vs Test Case

    Test scenarios are rather vague and cover a wide range of possibilities, while Testing is all about being very specific.

    Let’s look at an example:

    For a Test Scenario, check Login Functionality. There are many possible test cases, including:

    • Test Case 1: Check results on entering valid User Id & Password
    • Test Case 2: Check results on entering Invalid User ID & Password
    • Test Case 3: Check response when a User ID is Empty & Login Button is pressed, and many more cases.

    4. Bug report

    A bug report contains specific information about what is wrong and what needs to be fixed in software or on a website.

    Effective bug report should contain the following:

    1. Title/Bug ID
    2. Steps to reproduce a Bug
    3. Expected Result
    4. Actual Result
    5. Visual Proof (screenshots, videos, text) of Bug
    6. Priority/Severity

    5. Manual testing and automation testing

    Manual testing

    As the name suggests, manual testing needs a human tester to verify or disprove so it involves human observation to find out any glitches. The purpose of manual testing is to catch bugs and feature issues.

    Automation testing

    In automated testing, there are pre-scripted tests which run automatically. The tests are run to compare the actual results with the expected results. Automated tests run with the help of tools, scripts, and software. It is suitable when the test cases need to run repeatedly for a long duration of time.

    Check out our definitive guide on how to choose between manual testing and automation testing

    Quick go-through fundamentals of software testing activities

    To be a successful software QA, you should develop the following traits:

    • Strong attention in details
    • Observation and questions
    • Think out of the box
    • Diligent and practice
    • Good listener

    Want to fast-track your career as a software QA engineer with us?

    Check out our range of open positions!

    See Software QA Jobs!

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