On the international Tester’s Day, we take the opportunity to talk to our amazing colleagues Denitsa Kulezich, Senior Automation Engineer and Nataliya Hristova, Mobile QA Engineer, both part of the News UK team at Questers. We talked to them about their professional experience and their work at News UK. We also discussed how they see the future of the QA profession and how could more ladies be attracted to the tech sector. Here’s our insightful talk:
Tell us how you got here? What was your previous educational and professional experience?
Denitsa: I wasn’t actively looking for a new opportunity when I got contacted by a former colleague of mine, who was now working at News UK’s team. He sweet-talked me on how good this workplace was and how supportive and nice people there were. So, I got, if I may say, hooked up. Then a recruiter from Questers contacted me and I was completely sold.
I have more than 12 years of experience as QA. I worked in product companies and outsourcing ones, so I had the luck to have experience in completely different projects, technologies and even ways of working. I took different positions in these companies, but I never left the QA field, which up to this day remains my biggest passion.
As for my education, I studied Applied Mathematics and Informatics at the Technical University of Sofia. I also had a semester in France attending courses at the Grenoble Institute of Technology.
Nataliya: I am here because I like what the News UK team is doing and thanks to a referral from one of my current colleagues.
I graduated the High School of Mathematics in Plovdiv. Studied Business administration in the University of National and World Economy afterwards and then joined the Quality Assurance and Test Automation Engineer Track at Telerik Academy. I started my first job as a QA in Telerik (now Progress Software), where I studied and worked for 6 years.
What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Nataliya: There are different challenges and I can’t say which one is the biggest one - it could be the pressure around releases, it could be the communication between teammates or changes in the team. After all, I believe that every challenge is an opportunity to grow as a professional and also as a person, so I am really thankful for every challenge I encounter.
What excites you about your work?
Nataliya: All the opportunities to learn new things, to grow, to solve problems, to be part of a great team and strive together for delivering high-quality products.
What do you consider your biggest achievement?
Denitsa: I would say that the opportunity to spread out on several forums what I have learnt throughout my professional career is amongst my biggest achievements. Another one is changing how the work of the QA is perceived and showing how important this field is.
Nataliya: The appreciation from the team and the customers.
Tell us more about News UK team and what it’s like to work in it.
Denitsa: I really enjoy working with my colleagues. They are very supportive and patient. The atmosphere is 100% collaborative. I had no trouble finding my place in the team and my colleagues absolutely made me feel part of the team since day one.
Nataliya: I love that in News UK colleagues are very friendly and always ready to help. I really like that if you think something could be improved (technically or in terms of processes) you can always give suggestions, share your opinion and ideas, have discussions and lead the changes.
How do you see the future of the QA role?
Denitsa: What I observe over the last few years is a convergence of 3 different roles: development, QA and operations, so today’s QAs are more likely to do coding and ops tasks along with validating the software. But I don’t see the extinguish of the QA role. On the contrary – I can see how software quality becomes much more important with the more extensive usage of all kinds of devices in our daily life and with the growing demand for stable, reliable services.
Nataliya: Getting more and more important because of the huge amount of products that customers could choose from, but one of the key things that differentiates them is their quality. For example, in the mobile apps world when a user installs a low-quality application the chance to uninstall it after interacting with it for only a few minutes is very high. Does this sound familiar to you? Sure, it's a disaster to lose customers but if some of them leave bad comments, you can lose them even before they try your product.
How do you think more women could be attracted to the tech sector?
Denitsa: Comparing to what IT industry was before in terms of women/men ratio I think that now we are in a much better place. But to keep the good trend we need to inspire women and give them confidence that the IT field is not a “men only” place. So, manifesting the good examples of proven female professionals is a good approach. I also think that showing the high-schoolers how interesting technology can be and that being a Dev, QA or DevOps is not only for men or nerdy girls, can also help spark the light.
Nataliya: By getting inspired, by seeing more success stories and getting informed how they could start their career in this sector because I believe sometimes the hardest part is to find the answer to the question “Where should I start from?”