Over the last decade, the profile of Software Tester has gone through tremendous changes. Testing has become a show-stopper for several application/product implementations and business has reached the importance of Structured Testing of applications before release.

The demand for niche skills like SOA testers, Security testers are on the increase. There is a dearth of skills in test automation areas – scripting skills in the tools languages like VB, Java and other scripting languages like Perl, Shell, Python, etc.

Today we will talk about career paths you can explore as a software tester in 2021:

Academic Background:

The background required to be a software tester is Computer Science. A BTech/B.E., MCA, BCA, BSc. Computers, will get you a job quickly.

If you do not possess any of these degrees, then you must complete a software testing certification.

What Does a Software Tester do?

On any typical workday, you will be busy understanding requirement documents, creating test cases, executing test cases, reporting and re-testing bugs, attending review meetings, and other team-building activities.

Software Tester Career Path

Your Software Testing career growth as a software tester (QA Analyst) in a typical CMMI level 5 company will look like the following but might vary from company to company:

  • QA Analyst (Fresher)
  • Sr. QA Analyst (2-3 years experience)
  • QA Team Coordinator (5-6 years experience)
  • Test Manager (8-11 years experience)
  • Senior Test Manager (14+ experience)

Alternate Career you can pursue as a Software Tester:

Once you have got your hands dirty in manual testing, you can pursue the following specializations

1. Automation Testing

As an Automation Test Engineer, you will be responsible for automating manual test case execution which otherwise could be time-consuming. Tools used IBM Rational Robot, Silk performer, and QTP

2. Performance Testing

As a performance test engineer, you will be responsible for checking application responsiveness. Tools used are WEBLoad, LoadRunner.

3. Business Analyst

A major advantage Testers have over Developers is that they have an end to end business knowledge. An obvious Testing career progression for testers is to become a Business Analyst. As a Business Analyst, you will be responsible for analyzing and assessing your company's business model and workflows. As a BA, you will integrate these models and workflows with technology.

4. Data Scientist

Data scientists extrapolate data and share insights that help companies solve complex problems. Data scientists are proficient in computer science, modeling, stats, analytics, and math. They use their sound business sense to unpack answers to important questions that help a firm make actionable decisions.

You can opt for our Learning Path in Data Science to gain a first-hand knowledge of the subject and also glean industry-level exposure.

As a data scientist, you will implement functions like data exploration, regression models, and hypothesis testing. You will be involved in solving real-world data science problems and mastering python, robust ML models, and more.

This is a thriving and in-demand field that you can take up after doing your BBA. The minimum criteria to step afoot in this field is to have a bachelor's degree.

5. Product Manager

Product management is a particularly good fit for QA professionals. "They review and analyze software repeatedly and, in doing so, develop a deep understanding of the methodologies of making the quality of the software better. QA professionals are often the go-to people for new product and feature development. They've built up the knowledge to take the product to new heights of improvement.

6. DevOps Roles

Software testers have a holistic view of the development process that can make them good release managers or engineers, product stability managers, or automation engineers in companies that pursue a DevOps approach to development.

DevOps requires a holistic approach to application development and delivery that ensures that code gets to users more often, faster, and of a higher quality. Developers often do not have this because they are too far into the weeds.

7. Customer Experience Leader

QA professionals are myopically focused on the user or customers and, therefore, are increasingly valuable as companies elevate the value of the customer experience. Great QA testers understand that their consumer comes first. In technology-driven companies, software testers are the voice of the customer. "You have to consider the human element at all times. You have to embody the customer: What do they care about? And why?

8. Quality Engineering and Strategy

It may not seem like a big jump to go from QA to quality engineering. In quality engineering, the efforts are less on ensuring quality on a particular application release, but rather ensuring a system for quality for all releases.

QA professionals may also choose to pursue positions in QA strategy, which historically have been awarded to non-technical professionals with business analyst backgrounds. We hope this article helps you get clarity on how to become a software tester. If you still have doubts looming in your head, you can book a call with our career counselor today.