How to prepare for an QA interview

Published on May 27, 2021 | by Ani Vardanyan

QA (quality assurance) being an inseparable part of software development moves forward expeditiously. And, therefore, the position of QA engineer is one of the most demanded roles in nowadays’ Job Market. We see hundreds of job announcements daily for QA engineers and it seems too easy to get a job. But is it so? 

Being a good specialist and having profound knowledge of QA is not enough to get this role as there is a kind of “ritual” you have to overcome on the way of getting to your dream job. It is about job interviews. An important and indispensable point in any step of your career.

The main purpose of a job interview is to show your personal and professional qualities to convince and then prove to your interviewer that you are capable of taking all the responsibilities and risks related to an appropriate position.

 

Here you can find some general advice that can help you to shine in your job interview.

 

- Before going to an interview for any role it is necessary to do profound research of the company and position you are applying for.

Observe any kind of information about the company’s history, the scope of engagement, production, concurrence, and so on...

- Be self-confident, but note that overconfidence may have a negative impact on your image from the view of the HR or Manager (who takes your interview). So try to avoid an overconfident tone while presenting yourself or answering the questions.

- Talk clearly and comprehensively, don't try to make an impression by using complex and little-known words. It is important that your interviewer gets everything you are talking about, otherwise, It is most likely that your speech will be interrupted by him/her and you will risk failing your interview and lose the chance to be hired.

- Talk without rushing, neither too fast nor too slowly not to lose your audience.

- Never talk negatively about your previous job/team/management. It is one of the most common mistakes during a job interview that will ruin your reputation in the eyes of your interviewer instantly.

- Do not be egocentric, even talking about your experience, skills or education try not to keep you in the center all the time, it will not be seen positively from the side of your interviewer.

- Do not forget to use your body/gestures. In such a situation using body language is highly desirable.

As it is your first meeting with your recruiter your speech may not be enough to make a good impression on him/her and here body language comes to aid you. Just use the right gestures and manners. So the chance that your interviewer will be convinced is increased automatically.

- Prepare questions to ask your recruiter at the end of your interview.

 

Most frequently asked question in an interview for QA engineer

 

1. SDLC/STLC

SDLC (Software development life cycle) consists of the following steps: requirement analysis; product designing; product building; product testing; product deployment in the market and maintenance.

STLC (Software testing life cycle) consists of the following steps: requirement analysis; test planning; test case development; testing environment setup; test execution; test cycle closure.

 

2. BLC

Saying BLC (Bug life cycle) we understand the line of statuses every bug can go through during its “life”. The main bug statuses are: new; assigned; open; fixed; tested; verified; closed; reopened; duplicated.

 

3. Testing levels

Every software under test must pass the following levels of testing to be fully acceptable for release: unit testing; integration testing; system testing; acceptance testing.

 

4. Positive and negative testing

Positive testing is done by providing valid data as an input and then checking whether the software behaves as expected.

During negative testing, invalid or improper data is provided as an input and it is expected to get appropriate errors regarding invalid data entered.

 

5. What manual testing tools are you familiar with?

This is when you should present all the manual testing tools you have worked with.

 

6. What automation testing tools are you familiar with?

This is when you should present all the automation testing tools you have worked with during your previous projects (if any).

 

7. Some types of functional testing.

Functional testing refers to activities that verify a specific action or function of a software. Functional testing types: unit testing; regression testing; integration testing; smoke testing; recovery testing; sanity testing; interface testing; system testing; user-acceptance testing.

8. Some types of non-functional testing.

Non-functional testing refers to those aspects of the software that are not related to a specific function or user’s action. Non-functional testing types: security testing; usability testing; reliability testing; performance testing.

 

9. Difference between Scrum and Kanban.

Scrum and Kanban have many similarities, but they are different in their principles.

Working with Scrum means having the whole testing process divided into little intervals called “sprints”. There are clearly defined test stories to be done by the end of each sprint. Sprint duration needs to be defined in advance (before starting the testing process) by the team and it is always the same for every sprint.

In the case of working with Kanban, there are no sprints or such intervals for the testing process. All the tasks that need to be completed by testers are located in a storage called “backlog”. Testers are free to prioritize and choose tasks to do.

 

10. Validation, verification

Verification is a static process that starts from the first stage of SDLC and goes to the phase of “testing”. It is mostly about checking documentation and product design, observing specifications and requirements to understand whether the process is going in the right way, as expected. Here we don't have code execution, code is checked but no action or execution is done.

Validation is a more dynamic process done in the phase of “testing’ by the QA team to be sure that the product meets the needs of the customer.

 

11. “Black box”, “White box” testing

Black box testing, also called “blind” testing is done to test the behavior of software from an end-user perspective. When using “black box” testing methods, you don’t have any access to software code.

Unlike “black box” testing, “white box” testing implies mostly technical testing to check the internal functioning of the system. In this case, the tester has access to the main code to better understand the logic and specifications of the modules.

 

Having excellent technical knowledge is good but not enough. To be a fully competitive candidate you need to own some personal qualities every recruiter pays much attention to. So, to find out your characteristics requiters move to some general questions that help to reveal your “inner self”.

General questions asked during a job interview

- Why are you applying for this position?/ What attracts you the most in this role?

- How did you learn about this position?

- Where do you see yourself in five years?

- What contribution do you imagine bringing to our company in the first three months of your work?

- Which are your strengths and weaknesses?

- Which are your salary expectations for this role?

- Why should we hire you out of all other candidates?

- How do you imagine your dream job?

- Describe the best working environment for you.

- Which is your biggest dream?

- Describe yourself in 3 words.

- What/who motivates you in your life?

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