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  1. 1. IT Certification Skills Clarity Today – Confidence Tomorrow a jay. joglekar @acutest.co. uk switchboard: 020 7917 2838 mobile: 0774 3365514 www.acutest.co. uk
  2. 2. Introduction <ul><li>Acutest is a specialist test consultancy concentrating solely on testing IT, processes and technology-centred change </li></ul><ul><li>Our goal is to substantially increase the value our customers derive from testing by reducing the </li></ul><ul><ul><li>elapsed time spent testing; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>cost of testing; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>risks of going live. </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. IT Certification Skills & developing testing Recognising & developing testing professionals to meet the needs of today’s IT world of today’s IT world
  4. 4. Agenda <ul><li>Testers and how they become testers? </li></ul><ul><li>What qualities set great testers apart? </li></ul><ul><li>How can these skills be gained? </li></ul><ul><li>What qualifications does the market place offer? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Who becomes a tester? <ul><li>Traditionally most testers have ‘fallen into their current role’, may even have been pushed! </li></ul><ul><li>Unplanned </li></ul><ul><li>Characterised by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No clearly defined career path </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Traditionally testing qualification not part of IT syllabus </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Software testing is still immature? <ul><li>But: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>There are examples of very good practice out there </li></ul></ul><ul><li>However: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consistency in skills and knowledge is unusual </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. What makes a great tester? <ul><li>It’s a balancing act: </li></ul><ul><li>planning </li></ul><ul><li>designing tests </li></ul><ul><li>technical skills </li></ul><ul><li>risk analysis </li></ul><ul><li>team building </li></ul><ul><li>motivation </li></ul><ul><li>team dynamics </li></ul><ul><li>Communication </li></ul><ul><li>Soft skills </li></ul>
  8. 8. What makes a great tester? <ul><li>Core testing skills </li></ul><ul><li>Business skills </li></ul><ul><li>IT knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Reporting writing </li></ul><ul><li>Technical skills – tools and programming </li></ul><ul><li>Above all! </li></ul><ul><li>People skills </li></ul>
  9. 9. In-addition – Qualities that help! <ul><li>Curiosity </li></ul><ul><li>A need to break things </li></ul><ul><li>Attention to detail </li></ul><ul><li>Thoroughness </li></ul>
  10. 10. Skills in testing - 2 routes <ul><li>Experience </li></ul><ul><li>system knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>business knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>technical knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Training </li></ul><ul><li>test planning, design and execution </li></ul><ul><li>test tools </li></ul><ul><li>test management </li></ul><ul><li>requirement analysis </li></ul>So - can anyone test?
  11. 11. Developer skills <ul><li>knowledge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>use of development skills gives insight into how possible errors are made and possible faults that can be introduced </li></ul></ul><ul><li>experience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>code, environment architecture (OS, networks etc), tools, system architecture </li></ul></ul><ul><li>tests </li></ul><ul><ul><li>code, structure, detail, interfaces </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Tester skills <ul><li>knowledge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>useful testing skills such as requirements analysis, test case design, execution and the use of test tools. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>experience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>system, environment, tools and business </li></ul></ul><ul><li>tests </li></ul><ul><ul><li>interfaces, functional and non-functional system, inter-system, negative and positive </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. User skills <ul><li>knowledge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>users will be familiar with the application from the user's perspective, this provides insight into how the system will be used and where failures would have the greatest impact </li></ul></ul><ul><li>experience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>system and business </li></ul></ul><ul><li>tests </li></ul><ul><ul><li>business scenarios, functional and usability </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Good people skills <ul><li>Interpersonal skills are vital for the effective tester </li></ul><ul><li>trustworthy </li></ul><ul><li>objectivity </li></ul><ul><li>openness </li></ul><ul><li>appreciation </li></ul><ul><li>blameless </li></ul><ul><li>influencing and negotiation </li></ul><ul><li>giving and receiving criticism </li></ul>
  15. 15. Approaches Tester Development Tester Development Tester Development Tester Development Tester skills How do we tackle this?
  16. 16. Approaches Tester Development Tester Development Tester Development Public courses <ul><li>Pros: </li></ul><ul><li>Minimum planning </li></ul><ul><li>Off the shelf </li></ul><ul><li>Easy to arrange </li></ul><ul><li>Fix an perceived problem </li></ul><ul><li>Cons: </li></ul><ul><li>Not specific </li></ul><ul><li>Hard to measure </li></ul><ul><li>Quick fix </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of consistency </li></ul><ul><li>Needs not addressed </li></ul>
  17. 17. Approaches Tester Development Tester Development Professional/ vocational <ul><li>Pros: </li></ul><ul><li>Credibility/universality </li></ul><ul><li>Career advancement </li></ul><ul><li>Career path/focus </li></ul><ul><li>Recognition of skills </li></ul><ul><li>Cons: </li></ul><ul><li>Not practical </li></ul><ul><li>Exam based </li></ul><ul><li>Commitment </li></ul><ul><li>Cost </li></ul><ul><li>Not tackling key skill areas </li></ul>
  18. 18. Approaches Tester Development Coaching Development <ul><li>Pros: </li></ul><ul><li>Tailored </li></ul><ul><li>Organisation/individual specific </li></ul><ul><li>Measurable </li></ul><ul><li>Needs based </li></ul><ul><li>Cons: </li></ul><ul><li>Requires investment </li></ul><ul><li>Long term commitment </li></ul><ul><li>Beyond single project aims </li></ul>
  19. 19. Approaches Public courses Coaching Development Professional/ vocational Most effective Effective in certain areas
  20. 20. Testing certification <ul><li>Numerous tools based and supplier certified courses - mainly in the automation space </li></ul><ul><li>Test & test management certification - few independent qualifications </li></ul><ul><li>ISEB Software testing certificate - only example of national qualification in UK </li></ul>
  21. 21. ISEB - Software Testing Foundation & Certificate <ul><li>To gain recognition for testing as an essential & professional software engineering specialisation by industry </li></ul><ul><li>To enable professionally qualified testers to be recognised by employers, customers & peers and raise the profile of testers </li></ul><ul><li>To promote consistent & good testing practice within all software engineering disciplines </li></ul>
  22. 22. Background <ul><li>SIGIST circa 1990 – looking for convergence on test methods and terminology </li></ul><ul><li>ISEB (SIGIST part of the BCS) recognise </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Software testing as a Foundation level qualification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More recently Practitioner qualification added </li></ul></ul><ul><li>ISTQB formed 2004 – International body for testing </li></ul>
  23. 23. Progress so far.. Almost 17000 candidates have passed Foundation course
  24. 24. Future <ul><li>ISTQB </li></ul><ul><ul><li>International qualification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Foundation certificate available already </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Forum for testing </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Summary <ul><li>Testing has now come of age, </li></ul><ul><li>Why? : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>because of the recognition of the risk and impact of software failing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>because business is becoming aware that you need high quality testing skills to manage this risk </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Testing skills certification: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>ISEB/ISTQB have made a brave start </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multiple skills are required </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Need a multi-pronged attack </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Long term - coaching and support work! </li></ul></ul>
  26. 26. Clarity Today – Confidence Tomorrow

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