Software Testing job is not the same anymore there is a decline in demand for Testers and more so for manual testers. Even if there is a demand most preferred candidates are those who have Automation with DevOps as a skill and some kind of programming or scripting language exposure they carry.
How Software Testing Jobs have changed:
The importance of testing is not vanished, in Testing we do number of activities to provide assurance to customer that the developed product or application will run exactly as per requirements and to do so tester does integration testing, system testing, Security Testing, end to end testing, regression testing, Production readiness testing, acceptance testing, Build verification testing, load testing, stress testing, peak load performance testing …aaaaH and finally hand it over to customer. Working in IT industry for more than a decade where I myself have transitioned from a developer to a tester and now again see that development and testing are getting merged, more and more focus is given to developer who know automation tool or testers who knows development languages like Java, Python, Perl, C# etc
So what has changed, or what is causing that change in Testing and related work, let’s have a look:
Digital & Data are changing the world:
It is interesting to see that more and more people are getting connected to each other disrupted value chains are forcing companies to introduce newer solutions at a faster rate. Companies have started talking about integration of variety of products to fulfill digital growth but not certainly continuing with single product or services. This requires integration with various platforms ( stable platforms) and thus require testing but not in a big way, you would notice that with automation and stable code you don’t need many testers.
Faster Process, Stable Code and Automation:
Our Software delivery models have gone through significant change, earlier it used to take significant amount of time to release a product into the market due to waterfall model, well given the context we still have waterfall models exist in projects but sooner of later they will shift to more quicker method of delivery. We now have quicker methods to ship a product into the market and these methods mandates that team size should be small, team members should be well aware of domain, technology and product. Actually the main feature of these methods like DevOps and Agile is to do things faster with smaller number of requirements and release the product faster, it is just like our increasing the speed of food processor so that we can do more work in less time and by that example food processor need to be powerful enough to take that extra load and we have those machines in the market now, same applies to IT industry with stable code, compilers, short teams and improved method we can reduce the time to market.
Software industry as a whole has been maturing since its inception thanks to continuous R&D work in both software and hardware front. Someone who has worked on FORTRAN or C languages would easily compare difference between working 10 years ago and now. Infact our majority of programming base has shifted from old methods, classes & objects to all new standards for example VC++ is now C#, SQL to NoSQL, writing big COBOL code to working on MFCOBOL, Visual studio version 1 where compilation and build was major features now offers extendibility to mobile and cloud based applications, earlier developer used to write lot of code to integrate two major systems now tools does the work and code is available everywhere In fact We have whole new generation of code compilers, development environment, sophisticated code libraries, reusable functions & objects and now API’s. We even have automated code analyser tools which can quickly point out areas of flaw in the system and developer can locate & correct them easily. Point is when Developer designs a module the stable code is already available to use, one need not invest time and effort to write new lines of code, Test it and then implement it.
In one of the example in which customer signs in the deal because our organization has promised to provide some cost and efficiency optimization in the due course of 1 to 3 years which mandate that one need to bring in automation and reduce no of manual testers, or in this case manual tester has to learn automation or find another project. Automation is the fact in the life a tester, the sooner he picks up better he would be placed. A tester journey mostly starts with manual work and due course of time if opportunity exist he would pick up automation and may float for some time but normally organizations have very less patience to train their manual testers into automation in that case individual efforts by testers are made and some succeed some still keep on trying.
Customer Sentiments leading to Product/Services innovation:
Consumers are filled with choices, mobile & social media not only increase the reach to customer but also gets the feedback faster, technology startup and products innovation are at their peak, companies now need to introduce products/services faster in no time. Thus look for products or services where development time is lesser thus testing time becomes lesser.
Open Source & Crowd Sourcing:
Software industry as a whole has been maturing since its inception thanks to continuous R&D specially in Open Source area both for software and hardware. Companies need an integrator to use these freely available stable tool and be done with development time and cost. Selenium has evolved into a all new age automation ecosystem where most of the testing is now taking place, its free, its exhaustive and it well integrates with development.
Is Crowd Sourcing affecting software testing jobs?
Since companies are increasing their presence by digital route and to win in this race they want to avoid lengthy QA process and passing the product directly to close user base and after receiving good amount of satisfaction percentage they go for another build. This is going to be the future for QA. We have some organizations which are heavily increasing their budget for crowd sourcing work for example: 99Test.com is an crowd sourcing company, other example are some credit card companies generate credit card for its set of employees who uses the card on daily basis and provide the feedback to development team, they are definitely saving cost on QA efforts.
The fact is that manual jobs in any industry are taken over by automation, lengthy procedures have been replaced by smart applications and most importantly speed is the key in software industry now and faster we acknowledge better we are equipped to take up the challenge.
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