A lot of young Indian engineers working in the US companies actually work on software testing earning on par with software writers.

There are many facets to software that we use on our computer. But before it is out in the market and installed in your computer, testing it for glitches and making corrections in software is one of the main operations that is carried out by companies that write them.

The profile of a software tester has evolved in the last few years. With competition on service and quality becoming the top priority of companies, software testing is turning out to be a good career option for many. Lot of young Indian engineers working in the US companies actually work on software testing earning on par with software writers. In what was once considered a monotonous job, testing now plays a crucial role in the success of a software company and its products. But testing requires lot of skills, says V. Satyanarayana, Head (HR) ADP Private Limited. As a tester one is expected to analyse an application, identify glitches and at times suggest techniques to correct such glitches apart from having have an eye for detaining. It is very challenging and complex job, he explains. Software companies are investing nearly 30 per cent of their revenues on testing and employing fulltime testing teams. A tester should look at things in both ways - constructive and destructive. He needs to have the ability to break the system and destruct the glitch and for this one needs to have domain knowledge. With increased web-based application system, particularly net banking, investment banking, health care, manufacturing etc, there is huge a demand for quality testers, he adds.

Several types

There are several types of testing and some popular are automation tools and performance tools. Security testing is now shaping into most important aspect in developing a software application. “A career in testing is equally lucrative as a career in development. Generally, one begins as a tester then becomes a senior test engineer and eventually a test lead or a QA lead. Like a software developer, a tester can also lead teams and head units or companies,” informs Mr. Satyanarayana.

Testing is all about thinking like a customer. Gone are the days when an application used to be tested once it is completely developed but the now the role of testing specialist comes into play right from designing the application to the end product, points out Suman Reddy, Managing Director of Peg Systems India.

Testing teams have to guide developers in designing, coding and make them work in tune with the expectations of customers.

Testing teams should literally write codes, frame works and automate test cases.

It's an all-round job unlike that of a developer, where one is confined to coding a programme, he explains. Companies are now establishing testing centre for excellence and hiring employees and even training them to upgrade their skills.

Students should first change their mindset and look at testing as a career but not as a supplement option to software developing.

Thought process should begin in the third and fourth year of engineering. Students should undergo certified training programmes and make themselves industry-ready workforce, adds Mr. Reddy.