Interview tips when appearing for QA roles

QA Interview Tips When Appearing for QA Roles

Hello Peeps,

I hope you are all doing good. 

Software job trends are frequently changing. The expectations for Software Testers and Quality Assurance (QA) roles are also changing to match that. Most organizations realized the importance of software testing and the testers. In this era, testing is also evolving to a greater extent.

Also, testers are involved in multiple software development phases due to the influence of Agile methodology. If you refer to a job description for a Software Tester, the requirements list is enormous. Five or six years back, Automation was a preferred skill set. Now rarely can we see the requirements for functional testing roles.

In this blog, we will discuss some tips for people appearing for an interview for QA roles. Before applying to any job, validate the job description. Ask a few questions yourself.

If you have the clarity to the above questions, tweak your resume accordingly. It doesn’t mean adding the skills to your resume even if you have yet to work on that tool/technology. Instead, highlight the required skills in your resume based on the current role you are applying for. Try to be honest with your resume.

QA Interview Tips: Things to Do Before the Interview

QA Interview Tips: Things to Do Before

1. Do more profound, proper research about the Company.

Before applying for the job, it’s good to know more about the company. In case you missed it, then do it before the interview. Check if your friends or LinkedIn connections work in the same company. Try to understand the services provided by them. So one of the essential tips is – to understand the importance of QA in the organization before you interview for the QA role.

What is the Organization’s culture? Do they offer remote opportunities? Do they have any onsite or travel opportunities? How are Testers treated in the Organization? What are the career options/how is the Career growth for Testers over there? Answers to these questions will provide you with clarity about the employer you are applying for. You can also check out their website/LinkedIn pages. This can say a lot about their quality culture.

2. Read through the JD again and be clear with the expectations

Providing a clear JD is the expectation from the hiring managers. But it’s your responsibility to read through that and understand the nature of the role, types of testing knowledge required, tools and technologies used, etc. This will help you to prepare well for the technical evaluation part of the interview.  

3. Be on time.

If it’s an in-person interview, try to be there on time. This helps to avoid confusion. Locate the interview room or reach out for help if required.

As a pro tip, when you join the QA interview virtually, make sure to join early in the meeting. You will have ample time to fix technical issues with the video recording software (say, Zoom, Podcastle, etc.). Try to reach out to HR or the person who helped to schedule the interview. Being early helps to avoid qualms.

4. Dress appropriately.

For both virtual and in-person interviews, make sure to dress professionally. Pick a dress that is comfortable for you. Also, there are a few color suggestions, but I will leave that up to you. 

5. Ensure there are no distractions.

Check your voice and video, and ensure a relaxed and peaceful ambiance. Also, ensure that the other smart devices are in DND mode. Check if the messaging applications are also muted.

6. Prepare well.

Based on the JD and the inputs from HR, make a list of technical expectations. Now start preparing for it. A lot of videos are available, so spend your time wisely preparing. For the commonly asked questions, do a practice test. 

7. Programming language expertise

Most jobs currently demand programming language knowledge for software testers. At the same time, you don’t need to master any language. It’s good to have basics in any of the frequently used programming languages. Most low-code/no-code tools are revolutionizing, so focus on gaining the “Automation Testing” knowledge.

Check Out: QA Interview Questions and Answers

QA Interview Tips: Things to Do During the Interview:

QA Interview Tips: Things to Do During the Interview:

1. Introduce yourself

Self-introduction is an unavoidable part of most of the interviews. Use this opportunity and register that you are an interesting personality. Your resume states everything, starting from the work experiences, tools expertise, education details, etc.

Now try to impress the interviewer by quoting some unique experiences, what you love about software testing, why do you want to stay in testing, etc. Also, keep this short, don’t extend for more than three minutes. Sometimes interviewer may lose interest. 

2. Attitude matters

Focus on your body language. Throughout the interview try to keep up the pace. Choice of words and tone matters. Carry a cheerful attitude that brings out your confidence and the interviewer will also feel at ease communicating with you. So smile when needed. Maintain eye-eye contact with the interviewer. 

3. Keep answers precise

For a few questions, the answers need to be elaborate. But for a few, it should be a pretty quick straightforward one. Don’t speak stories when not required and waste the time of the interviewer.  Sometimes even the questions raised from your answer will decide your fate. So be cautious about what you speak. 

4. Quote examples when needed

When you interview for a QA role, one important tip is to add in examples to explain your answers where possible. Not necessarily every answer should be one or two liners. For specific questions, try to explain with real-time examples. Few questions will demand the challenges you faced. Try to share your own experiences. For instance, when the interviewer is asking about the “Severity” and “Priority” of the bugs, explain them with a simple example.

5. Be Attentive

Subtract the distractions, and be all ears. Listen and act meticulously. If you are confused about the question, clarify it before answering instead of answering wrongly. Be receptive to the feedback.

6. Speak up for yourself

The interview should be in more of a conversation mode, so try to highlight what are your specializations, what makes you a special tester, and what types of testing you worked on. Adding up these pointers to the asked questions will give better clarity about your involvement with software testing. Explain your interest areas and community contributions. This helps the interviewer to assess your team player attitude. 

7. Sound like a Leader:

Your voice should show up enthusiasm and confidence at the same time. Right tone matters. Even if you are in a younger or a Senior QA role, one tip when you are showing up for an interview is – Be firm while you talk. This shows your leadership skills.

8. Maintain the tempo:

Keeping the correct pace is important to convey your answers correctly. Be loud and clear. Also, don’t drag and try to waste the time of the interviewers. 

QA Interview Tips: Things to Do After Inteview

QA Interview Tips: Things to Do After Inteview

1. Do a self-reflection

Relax, and think about the entire interview. How do you feel about it? What could have been done better? Write a journal about your experiences. Especially when you are desperate about getting a job and attending a lot of interviews this is a value add.

2. Note down the questions

Every interview is different, try to note down the questions for performing a self-assessment. Analyze how did the answering part go. 

3. Learn to unlearn

After the self-assessment, learn to forget the mistakes and not repeat them. Unlearning is so important to forget the bad. 

4. Next steps?

Based on your self-reflection, you will have an insight into whether this interview will be a success or not. Whatever happens, life is not going to end there. Hang-on. Devise your plan and decide what to do next. This helps you to excel in your future interviews.

QA Interview Brownie points:

1. Stay on top of the latest software testing trends. To achieve this, subscribe to the software testing newsletter and a few Test enthusiasts’ blogs.

2. Speak with a Mentor or Friend before the interview. This helps in introspecting a lot.

4. Highlight if you are a part of any of the ambassadorship programs. This helps you to provide high visibility.

5. Brag about your Open source contributions. If you do not talk about it, no one else will. If you still need to start it, do it now .

6. Play around with the open-source tools before the interview.

7. Most organizations work in an Agile environment, so learning the agile terminologies and using them while answering will justify it.

8. Learn the basics of Cloud-based testing.

9. Whatever role you apply for, brush up on the Testing basics, terminologies, and processes before the interview.

10. Be responsible for what you mentioned in the resume. To refresh your memory about the mentions in the resume.

11. If it is a virtual interview, connect from the laptop. Avoid using mobile. The interviewer might provide some activities to perform which is difficult via mobile.

12. Think outside of the box for the scenario-based questions.

13. Agree with your mistakes. If the interviewer is wrong, try to explain your view politely.

Closing thoughts !!

The interviewer might meet a lot of candidates for the same role. With the help QA interview tips mentioned above, understand your strengths and work on them and be confident. Make your selling points clear. This increases your chance of clearing the interview. If you are learning continuously and open to learning/exploring new software testing trends, you will be an exciting candidate that every employer wants to hire.

Within a short period, you should be able to justify that you are a passionate tester and a strong-headed person. Even though there is a lot of information regarding interview tips, keep in mind that honesty is a fundamental discipline for any software tester.

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” ― Oscar Wilde.

Wishing you the best in your upcoming job search and interviews!!

Check Out: Software Testing Interview Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Prepare for a Quality Assurance Interview?

You can prepare for a QA interview by going through the QA interview questions and answers. Research more about the company and get a gist of the culture they follow.

What are the Top 3 Skills for a QA Analyst?

An industry-level QA analyst will always equip themselves with the current skill requirements and trends.

A few important skills every QA analyst should have are

  • Communication
  • Leadership.
  • Statistical analysis.
  • Problem-solving.
  • Organizational and planning.

What are 5 QA Best Practices?

  • Quick learning, as well as collaboration and social skills
  • Create a detailed plan and specify QA goals and objectives.
  • Maintain a positive team environment 
  • don’t underestimate errors.
  • Undertake external quality checks and keep detailed documentation.

Suggested Reading

30 Tricky QA Interview Questions and Answers

Top 40 Software Testing Interview Questions

QnA with Ajay Balamurugadas

An Interviewer’s Complete Guide to hire the best QA Engineers

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