QA Automation Skill Matrices (reviewing your career or hiring a resource)

Posted by Albert Gareev on May 28, 2009 | Categories: Hiring Process

Original date: 5 Feb 2009, 11:30am

In my past job experience I used to be asked by hiring managers about helping them to identify a right skillset for the QA Automation specialty. The following is my notes on that.

1. Junior/Intermediate Level.
Automation and/or QA training will be required – so there should be a mature automation professional in the team to do coaching on the job.

Skill Priority Description
IntermediateProgramming/Scripting Critical (based on Test Automation Tool) QTP: VB Script;WinRunner: C;Selenium: C/C++, JavaScript
Both technical and non-technicalProblem Solving Mandatory Demonstrated ability
Intermediate QA/Testing Strongly Desired Test Case design and execution / Strong sense of quality
Good communication skills both verbal and written Mandatory Demonstrated ability
Quick Learner Mandatory Demonstrated ability
Analytical Approach Mandatory Demonstrated ability
Attention to detail Mandatory Demonstrated ability
Self-driven Strongly Desired Demonstrated ability

Comments and descriptions.

Intermediate Programming/Scripting
It’s not only because automation tools have programming language.
Automation thinking is an algorythm type thinking.

Problem Solving (technical and non-technical)
There will be a lot of questions to figure out, and a lot of technical problems to solve or work-around.

Intermediate QA/Testing
Manual testing experience is valuable. Understanding of testing needs is critical.
At the end, automation is a QA support.

Communication skills both verbal and written
Unlike the other programming jobs here a lot of communication is required.

Quick Learner
Courses and trainings give only the formal knowledge of testing tools.
To build successful automation, a specialist is required to pick-up business knowledge and test requirements quickly, while staying in the stream with modern automation practices.

Analytical Approach
Abilities to see the system in the chaos, summarize and make conclusions, build the right model, as well as thinking outside the box.

Attention to detail
Including details of own work.

Automation development project usually is not supported as good as the Application development project itself.
Identifying your goals, communicating with the team, following up on the issues, and creating documentation, lead to accomplishment.

2. Strong Intermediate Level.
Capable to work within the established architecture using existing framework, or create separate scripts utilizing data-driven approach.

Skill Priority Description
Intermediate/SeniorProgramming/Scripting Critical Mandatory: VB Script;Optional: C/C++, JavaScript.Real projects experience
Test Script Creation experience beyond Record/Playback Critical At least 1-2 years of experience
Test Scripts programming (full cycle) Strongly Desired 2-3 years of experience on 2 (or more) different projects
Intermediate/Senior QA/Testing Critical At least 2-3 years of experience on 2 (or more) different projects.Capable to train others
Senior QA/Testing Strongly Desired 4-5 years of experience on 3 (or more) different projects
Both technical and non-technicalProblem Solving Critical Demonstrated ability.Real projects experience
Cross-platform Technologies Strongly Desired Mandatory: XML/XPath;Optional: HTML/XSL, SQL
Self-starter / Quality-driven Strongly Desired Demonstrated ability
Technical English and Documentation Mandatory Demonstrated ability
Strong communication skills both verbal and written Mandatory Demonstrated ability
Quick Learner Critical Demonstrated ability
Analytical Approach Critical Demonstrated ability
Attention to detail Mandatory Demonstrated ability

Comments and descriptions.

Intermediate/Senior Programming/Scripting
Not only full knowledge of a programming language (at least one).
Experience of development for the real project, with a team of BAs, QAs, and other developers.
Knowledge and practical use of structural and object-oriented programming is a must.

Test Script Creation experience beyond Record/Playback / Test Scripts programming (full cycle)
Proven experience creating  scripts that have been successfully used throughout the project.

Should have an understanding of Test Automation Requirements: Usability, Maintainability, Scalability, Robustness, and be able to identify current level of needs.

Should be aware of Technical Setup, Test Coverage, Verification, and Integration problems, and be able to address them effectively.

Experience maintaining existing scripts, updating / improving test logic, adjusting scripts to the changes in the Application.

Intermediate/Senior QA/Testing
Hands-on experience working within QA cycle. That includes practical knowledge of testing approaches, defect investigation/reporting/tracking, and full understanding of QA terminology.

Cross-platform Technologies
Knowledge of SQL queries, ability to use XML and HTML, understanding of protocols and client/server communications is a common requirement for the modern IT specialist, and automation isn’t an exception.

Self-starter / Quality-driven
A mature automation specialist is a project himself. From automation requirements to unit testing of the scripts, from documentation to defect tracking.

Technical English and Documentation
A lot of documents to read and to create; draw diagrams; create tables and charts.

Communication Skills
Quick Learner
Analytical Approach
Attention to detail

Mandatory and critical.

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported
This work by Albert Gareev is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported.