"Some birds aren't meant to be caged, their feathers are just too bright"- Morgan Freeman, Shawshank Redemption. This blog is from one such bird who couldn't be caged by organizations who mandate scripted software testing. Pradeep Soundararajan welcomes you to this blog and wishes you a good time here and even otherwise.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Being a tester V/s Working as a tester

Hi Reader,

I think I spent enough time, to give you something that can really make you think a lot on who you are.

Well, I joined a couple of software testing and testing related communities in orkut with an attempt to discuss on topics of testing and learn something from more wise minds.

All communities I joined are flocked with Indian testers and I am now wondering whether I should thank myself for having a learning there?

I learnt that there are two types of testers in India:

a) One who is a tester.
b) One who works as a tester.

Now, I do not want you to believe me. If you believe me before you read further, I would have to assume you belong to category (b). However...

_ Being a tester v/s Working as a tester_

It is very interesting to share my research on Indian testers in this post. I am not sure how testers are in the western or eastern world since I have never traveled outside, so let me not talk about them without seeing them.

Now, you might have a question to me...
"Who is better, the one who is a tester or the one who is working as a tester?"

I do not want to bias you but judge it yourself based on the following.

Features of people "working as a tester" -
  • One who works as a tester, would have started to learn testing for the purpose of job and is eager to collect material, interview questions and answers.
  • One who works as a tester, is eager to get a certification for augmenting themselves in their career.
  • One who works as a tester, is a toolsmith. They believe if you do not know any tools that are available in the market and the ones mentioned in job openings, you are not a tester.
  • One who works as a tester, seldom thinks of jumping into development, assuming that is a better job.
  • One who works as a tester, stops learning and starts confusing others by replying to queries in many discussions/communities/forums, both online and offline.
  • One who works as a tester, value money more than testing and they feel they are better testers if they are paid more.
  • One who works as a tester, post queries in all forums with improper subject line and without using simple search.
  • One who works as a tester, keeps asking others opinion about the job and the tool they are using.
  • One who works as a tester, wants to be spoon fed and is not willing to spend time and energy in researching or finding the data by themselves.
  • One who works as a tester, is the one who expects others to reply to their basic queries.
  • One who works as a tester, is the one who is irritated with testers who are being testers.
  • One who works as a tester, gets to management job as soon as possible, paving way for more people to work as a tester.
  • One who works as a tester, never tolerates ones who are being testers.
  • One who works as a tester, are more attracted to testing jokes than testing concepts.
  • One who works as a tester, never accepts others view of testing, be it from a person who is also working as a tester.
  • One who works as a tester, never know who coined the terminologies they have been mis using and never want to learn about their work too.
  • One who works as a tester, ... "Oh my God! this list is getting too big".
  • One who works as a tester, is a person who will never accept this post of mine.

"That's a sweet way to end it Pradeep" , I said to myself.

On a contradiction, I am happy that there are people who are being testers in India -
  • These people learn and experiment the concepts so well that, you ask them to write test cases for a software or a tubelight or anything, they will be able to do it without others help. Atleast they will make an effort.
  • These people value money and testing equally. ( I would never say they value testing more than money, I want to be realistic and no hype)
  • These people do enough search/research on their doubt before they post it on to a group. Such a tester is visible by the way he asks doubt - For example he/she asks - Subject - Query on XYZ concept - Body - Hi Testers, I was wondering about this concept after looking at ..... link .... I did some basic analysis but I seem to be not convinced, could anyone who has a belief that you can explain for me to understand can offer an explanation and I thank each of you for that.
  • These people get irritated when they are with people who work as a tester.
  • These people never stop learning, even if they become a Director or have their own start up.
  • These people are not as fortunate as the most of so called testers, who work as a testers.
  • These people remain... these people.

Its Judgment Day !

I still do respect those people who are working as a tester and trying to become a tester !

_ End of _ Being a tester v/s Working as a tester _

"I now have no doubts why the term "monkey, testing" came into the domain"

Thanks and Regards,

Pradeep Soundararajan


Note: Sorry for being so frank and bold.


Anonymous said...

I agree with you pradeep, whatever research you did is really true, but friend, this trend is created not by testers, but the organizations whose process define such, they dont think how much person is talented, how much he gives output, no nop, they will never think, they think only about the work done, and in this scenario, even if a one tester get the whole work load, is not gonna be problem to management or Qa mnager, or a test lead.

It really feels that someone is there who thinks about this all, because when you become a test lead, or test manager, you will realize this aspect and judge a person perfectly and create a great process.

explaining the truth to peoples who themselves know at what level they are, will create a revolution, and becuase of this i am big fan of Pradeep.

Keep posting Pradeep, you are genius.

Anonymous said...

Hi Pradeep,
Do you see anything wrong in the people who work as a tester?
After reading your article I am bit confused as in which category I lie.

Pradeep Soundararajan said...

Do you see anything wrong in the people who work as a tester?

Its a good question *Anonymous*.

Working as a tester is not wrong as long as you are making efforts to becoming a tester and or you appreciate someone who is being a tester.

Anonymous said...

It was very good article pradeep, i see you understand the current trend very well and I admit, I am working as a tester but i will become a tester soon.

i need your help and please help me to become a tester.

Anonymous said...

For those who ask "Is it wrong to work as a tester?".

It is not wrong. It is fine to work in any position you want.
You just have to try to do your best in the job. And, in testing, I too think you have to be a tester to do a great job.
So, if you start working as a tester because this is what you got into and then you like it and start learning and so on, it is ok.
But if you start working as a tester and then you just go to work and wait for payment, I think it is not ok.

And this applies to any work - if you like it, you will be good, but if you just go for the money and don't like it, sometime you will cause/have problems.

Good luck,

Pradeep Soundararajan said...


That was a good diplomatic reply to the above question and thanks for the explanation.

Anonymous said...

as usual this was another eye opener for testers in india. i wish everyone tester reads this.

Anonymous said...

Indeed good post I must say.
Point 3 for people working as a tester says "One who works as a tester, is a tool smith. They believe if you do not know any tools that are available in the market and the ones mentioned in job openings, you are not a tester."
but i feel there is nothing wrong in being a tool smith, in fact I think every tester should strive to be.
Rather than finding out who coined the term "sanity testing" it is good if one find out how he can automate his testing process, makes scripts which are reusable, how to overcome the limitation of testing. And it doesn't harm in learning new tools and technology available in the market.
Sorry, if I am sounding immature.

Pradeep Soundararajan said...


Thanks for having gone through this post but I request you to carefully since I feel there is a difference in your understanding and what others have been understanding from this article.

Being immature is good, since it ensures you make a lot of mistakes and you learn a lot from it. Learning is joy to me and am sure you too are enjoying.

Anonymous said...

Excellent way to differentiate between testers. I am impressed in the way you have writtedn this entire blog. I must admit that you are already putting up a great show.

The most important of any other thing is you have shared your learnings and research with all of us and hence your attitude is what will be liked the most apart from your testing skills.

Unknown said...

very good post indeed.

I guess I work as a tester and clearly need your guidance to be a tester :)

Paul said...

a very clear and straight forward explanation about testing... i was doing a kind of management work and i just moved into testing profession, was bit worried and confused making me feel whether i have choosen a wrong track but now i feel better.

Amit said...


With all due respect, I dont know why you are so much angry with "Indian Testers". I agree there are cases of fake candidates. But still not all are like that