Hi, Judith! Thank you for chatting with us. Would you be able to tell us a little about your latest projects?
I’m part of a multi project team working across products for several customers. The products are quite varied, from water dispensers for use in labs to a device that analyses urine.
What sort of role do you have here at Bluefruit?
I’ve led the way in the Senior Software Test Engineer role, which is a reasonably new position that is still being defined.
Besides being a tester on the team, I do more than just testing, I am…
- An alternative point of contact for clients
- Involved in the tester recruitment process
- A point of call for support and advice for other testers
- Responsible for tester training and induction of new testers
- A representative for testers in the wider scope of the company
- Part of encouraging and supporting cross teamwork
- Team Lead for Team Helios
What skills do you need to do your job?
You need to have good memory and be really organised. It’s also important that you’re willing to learn (lots), because you don’t just need to learn how to be a tester but need to become an expert in the product you are testing. This also means you must be good at reading and absorbing large amounts of information.
It’s also important to have great communication skills so that you can speak with customers and with the team. Sometimes you must question customer requirements or highlight if there is a possible problem with their requirement. With developers, it may be informing them of a defect you’ve found in their work. In both cases, this needs to be done carefully and thoughtfully, because they care about their ideas and work, and delivering potentially bad or problematic news to them can be hard.
How did you learn how to do what you do?
At Bluefruit! Although there are aspects such as a good memory and so on, which can’t be taught, prior to working at Bluefruit I had spent 12 years working in education.
What do you enjoy about your job?
The constant learning. I think part of what I enjoyed working in education was the continuous learning—learning from colleagues and learning from the children I taught.
In our area of the business, you are learning all the time, about testing and the product. This does mean the job is almost always changing. I’ve gone from testing and learning about model train set controllers to the science behind ultrapure water purification systems used in life-critical situations.
What is your favourite thing about working at Bluefruit?
Identical to what I enjoy: the knowledge I gain through my job. There are so many different things I get to learn about—it’s the same job, but not the same job. One Monday gets to be different from the other.
What do you do on the weekends or in your spare time?
My dogs are my world, I have two Border Collies who I do lots of training with. With Rosie, my red merle we do Agility, and we are hoping to attend our first competition this year. With my blue merle, Lulu we do Rally Obedience, a new and upcoming dog sport from the USA.
What do you think is the most exciting thing happening in the software/tech/engineering space at the moment?
So hard to answer. I feel honoured to have grown up and be in a time where technology is taking off. AI, Medical, Space, just general technology amazes me.
I’ve been watching a T.V. series called Back in Time for School, where students experienced school life from the 1890s through to the end of the 1990s (where I left school in 1999). It highlighted just what an amazing technological age I’ve been lucky enough to be living through.
Anything else you want to share?
Don’t let what other people think of you and your interests define your future. Whilst those people right now may influence your life (or you feel they do), those people won’t be around in 5, 10, 20 plus years.