Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Tips for CV's and Job Applications

The following is slightly idealistic view on applying for software testing jobs. Reader is recommended to reflect his own values and think what kind of compromises he is ready to make.

What to considering avoiding on your CV/cover letter
1)      Lying
2)      Using (for ex. ISTQB) certificates as a proof of testing skills
3)      Explaining experience without details (“6 years in web testing” doesn’t tell really anything)
4)      Explaining experience with too many/waste details
5)      Exaggerating your experience (don’t put “MySQL” in your skills if you didn’t work directly with it)
6)      Typing mistakes
7)      “Empty holes” in the timeline
8)      Abbreviations and jargon
9)      Confidential information (for example customer name)

What to consider including
1)      Explaining your skills and how you have improved on them
2)      Explaining what you bring to the company
3)      Explaining your way of testing
4)      Giving arguments to your approach to testing
5)      Showing a capability to critical thinking
6)      Showing contextual talent
7)      Humor (this is quite a bit so-and-so case)
8)      Extra curriculum activities such as blogging, writing, public speaking, visiting conferences
9)      A sample test report as an attachment

What jobs to consider passing up
1)      If they have “certification” written in them without a negate
2)      If the job includes creating/aiming at one-dimensional metrics (bug counts, test case amounts, …)
3)      If the application has a lot of buzzwords or nonsense in it
4)      If the job/company doesn’t meet your values
5)      If you are not even close to what they are asking for

How would you continue/edit the lists? Let me know about your thoughts!

Next post most likely about Internet banking experiences from a tester’s point of view. Stay tuned.

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