10 Skills Every Software Tester Should Master

Software testing is a procedure performed by a software tester to execute either a computer program or application with an aim to find and fix the software bugs. Software testing can also be understood as the process that validates and verifies either of the software program, application or product.

Being software testing one of the most crucial things, it is very imperative that every software tester should possess specific technical skills and in some, they need to excel. What are those skills?

These are some of the most valuable 10 skills that every software tester should master

Testers don’t like to break things; they like to dispel the illusion that things work. — Kaner, Bach, Pettichord

software tester skills

1. Awareness of SDLC skills

Most of the project stakeholders possess a false impression that SDLC (software development life cycle) is a project management methodology. In fact, SDLC is a framework that defines tasks to be performed at each stage of software development process.

For software testers and quality analysts, it is advisable to learn product lifecycle management abilities. Such learning will enable them to comprehend the application improvement undertakings and plan testing cycles effectively. In-and-out information of SDLC will also help the quality analyst to suspect complexities in the application which can control in taking the correct measures in advance.

With this, software testers should also grasp a few development methodologies that pertain to SDLC. To name a few, those methodologies are Scrum, Agile, Waterfall, and V-shaped model among others.

2. Attentiveness to STLC skills

STLC is an abbreviation of software testing lifecycle. Software testers have an important role to perform in the Product Testing Life Cycle, which is also called STLC.

STLC is a grouping of exercises carried out by the team of software testers from the starting point of the project to the completion of the project. Programming Testing Life Cycle is a procedure to improve the overall quality of the product. STLC comprises of various steps such as analysis of requirement, in a grouping, test planning, developing test case, setting up an environment, executing tests, and closing test cycle. At each of the STLC stage, procedures are carried out in a planned and systematic manner to get done a decent quality product.

3. Knowledge of various Bug Reporting Tools (Testing Tools & Techniques)

Bug reporting being one of the core responsibilities, it is essential for every software tester to have knowledge and awareness of different testing techniques and application of testing tools. Testing is not responsible for the bugs inserted into software any more than the sun is responsible for creating dust in the air. — Dorothy Graham

Regardless of the domain and type of application, the acquaintance of various testing types likes white box testing, black box testing, security testing, system testing, unit testing, and others make testers versatile. Also, it helps them work on any sort of project. Moreover, a large number of bug reporting tools are available in the market such as bug tracking tools, test management tools, GUI testing tools, automation tools and similar others. Hence, it is also important for quality analysts to get the knack of these tools so that they can serve diverse requirements and complexities of the project.

4. Well-versed with Techniques of Automation

Automation does not do what testers used to do unless one ignores most things a tester really does. Automated testing is useful for extending the reach of the testers’ work, not to replace it.  – James Bach

With the increasing complexities and integrations in the application, relying on manual testing alone cannot get the job done. For testing browser compatibility, performance, headless as well as database and integration layers, testers should learn automation skills since it imparts higher accuracy because of the business logic and technicalities it can serve. In addition, there are several test automation tools that dedicatedly support particular testing type and come with features to get the tasks done quickly and efficiently.

5. Excellent communication skills

Excellent communication skills are the key to succeed in any field, on any platform. A software tester is also not an exception here. Every tester should also possess good communication skills. Here, effective communication skills refer to good writing, speaking, listening, and reading skills. Quality analysts should communicate effectively with stakeholders at all stages, e.g. updating the status of the project to the clients, informing about requirements to the team, passing on issues to the developers, translating specification documents to test cases, and preparing reports for the management. Over and above, good communication helps to demonstrate a high degree of comprehension which further assists in conveying insights and providing feedback to both technical and non-technical people, logically and rationally.

6. Outstanding Logical and Analytical Thinking skills

Definitely, this is one of the essential requisites of a software tester. In most of the practical scenarios, software tester identifies a considerable amount of the bugs with rationales connected with the code. In such scenarios, analytical thinking ensures that you are capable of thinking out of the box. It should result in the creation of various test cases. Logical thinking helps you understand all Dos and Don’ts when you test as an end client and apply a broad range of prospects you can consider. Your analytical skills and logical thinking can create situations that help you rapidly make your product strong.

7. Top-notch Project Management skills

In any job, apart from core technical skills, one also needs to own time management and project management skills. Similarly, only possessing testing skills will not be sufficient for a software tester in the long run.

As a quality analyst, you should have great learning and thorough understanding of the business process and overall project details. Strong problem-solving skills and top-notch project management tactics will assist you when the going is tough. Besides, having in-depth programming talent will provide you with growth in testing at the code level. If you possess excellent knowledge of the code structure, your contribution to the development team will be significant. You will be able to come up with bugs that will be very useful for the overall software or product.

8. Updated with the latest Web & Mobile Technologies

If you are a software tester, apart from above skills, you should also get updated with the latest web and portable innovations. Then only you will be able to comprehend the sort of use, its built and scalability, and apply a suitable course of action for its testing.

Each and every software tester should keep a tab on both the web and mobile technology advancements. The technological advancements lead them to figure out the coding style and technical challenges to deliver effective QA solutions.

9. Sharp Decision-making skills

Perhaps, this is one of the most fundamental soft skills for any software tester. In most of the scenarios, a large portion of the bugs is identified with basis connected in the code. As ironic as it seems, the challenge of a tester is to test as little as possible. Test Less but Test Smarter – Federico Toledo

Analytical thinking and related decision-making skills ensure that you are capable of thinking out of the box. These skills will help break up a complex software system into smaller units to get a superior understanding and create test cases. Analytical skills and related decision-making talent of a software tester should result in the formation of different test cases.

Logical judgment plays a fundamental role when you test as an end-user and relate all sorts of probabilities you can think of. Creating situations which help in making the product strong can be done quicker by the software tester who possesses strong decision-making skills.

10. Self-explanatory and high-quality Reporting skills

Last, but not least! An ideal software tester must also own good reporting skills. High-quality reporting skills aid to provide the precise status of the test project and application under test to stakeholders. The practice of high-quality and self-explanatory reporting leads to overall better project test coordination.

In addition, it gives transparency to the top management regarding test cases executed; bug encountered; release timelines; and others that in due course lead to take the right decisions on time.

Closing thoughts

Being a software tester, the above-mentioned skills are desirable in you. Testing is a continuous process which runs throughout the product development lifecycle and even posts product development too. No doubt, there is always room for improvement in almost all products. However, if you possess the best qualities and top-notch skills of a software tester, you can for sure come up with the best possible product.

Written By