Who is a test engineer and what does he do?
QA tester or test engineer (QA-engineer), especially at https://seclgroup.com/ is a specialist who creates test scenarios, predicts failures, and finds errors in products. Why is this position in the company? The fact is that any IT product needs to be checked at every stage of development: this saves business resources because the sooner defects are found, the easier and cheaper it is to fix them.
To work well and with pleasure, it is important for a tester to be attentive and meticulous, good structural thinking is also useful. It is also useful to understand business processes and know the product thoroughly in order to maintain a balance between the interests of users, the goals of the company’s management, and the capabilities of the development team.
Tasks and responsibilities of a tester
The tester checks that the application works as expected from the documentation. If this is not the case, it fixes the error and submits it to the development department for correction.
Typically, a tester conducts a test in several stages:
- Examines the documentation and clarifies controversial points in it. As a result, he understands what functionality of the product will need to be tested.
- Develops tests. At this stage, the tester prepares a test suite for testing. If changes are made to the product, and they are made regularly, the test model must also be adjusted.
- Product check. At this stage, the tester goes through the developed tests and fixes the result: in those places of functionality where the tests were successful, he confirms that the product works correctly, and where the tests did not pass, he fixes errors.
To identify all possible types of errors, a QA engineer performs different types of testing.
Types of testing
The task of a tester is to check all possible and even impossible scenarios of user behavior when working with a software product. To do this, the software is tested at all stages, starting with the development of the terms of reference. Depending on what, when, and where you need to check, testing can be:
- Static – carried out at the very beginning of work, before the program starts. The specialist checks the project, specifications, and written code.
- Dynamic – Runs after static. The tester runs the program and checks how it works, determines the response time, and finds out how heavily the software loads the memory and processor.
- Functional – Verifies that the product works as intended and that the actual result is as expected. At this stage, the tester tests the security of the system to check its resistance to viruses, hacker attacks, and confidential data leakage. Another specialist finds out how the software product interacts with other components and systems, and how easily it integrates with them without additional modifications.
- Non-functional – Determines how the product performs under different conditions. The tester finds out the performance and usability of the program, checks how it works under different loads, and adapts to different platforms.
Programs can be tested manually or automatically. In the first case, the product is checked by specialists – they are also called “manipulators”. The tester studies the documentation and conducts test cases: manually as if it were done by a regular user, and he checks the operation of the application. If there are errors, fixes them. Then the developers fix the bugs and the QA engineer runs the test cases again according to the same scenario. Manual testing is carried out if you need to quickly evaluate several innovations.
When there are a lot of typical scenarios and test cases, the testing process is automated: programs are written that imitate user actions. This is what test engineers do. The specialist studies the task and decides how to automate specific steps. Then he writes and refines the code, and launches the test into work. Usually, non-functional testing is automated to speed up the process and reduce the number of errors that are possible with manual testing.
Testing Specialist Skills
- Theory of testing. The specialist must understand the classification of testing, know the basic methods and tools, and be able to create test cases.
- Databases and SQL. Most web applications use databases to store information. Knowledge of the SQL query language will help the tester understand the processes of database interaction with the application and evaluate its performance.
- Linux. This operating system runs many of the servers, databases, and web services that a tester has to deal with.
- Bug tracking tools. Bug tracking and remediation are usually done by several people, and bug tracking systems like Jira or Bugzilla help coordinate their efforts and fix defects.
- Programming languages. Knowledge of languages is needed to read and write code for automated testing.
- Attentiveness. Due to a missed mistake, the company can lose money and reputation. A QA specialist must be very attentive and meticulous and constantly ask himself the question: “What will happen if …?”
- Perseverance. Good testers believe that there are no programs without bugs, but not everyone has the patience to find them.
- The ability to formulate your thoughts. If a tester finds a bug, they should clearly describe when it occurs. Then the developers will be able to quickly fix the bug.
- Sociability. A tester always works in a team with developers, analysts, designers, and technical support from the client, so it is important to be able to communicate and find a common language with different people.
- Stress tolerance. It is necessary so as not to panic because of every missed bug because it is impossible to find all the bugs in the product the first time.
QA tasks are strongly related to testing, and many QA specialists are called testers. Perhaps, QA really tests most of the time with his hands, for example, in an application, executes all cases directly as a user (if we are talking about testing the client side), and compiles text documentation. But still, QA functions are wider: here we are talking about quality assurance in general.