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10 Things Every New Software Tester Should Learn – Part 1

10 Things Every New Software Tester Should Learn - Part 1

In today’s digital world, software quality is key to the success of every organization 🔑 Customers keep coming back for quality products and services that work seamlessly without issues. Testers are the unsung heroes of software development who enable organizations to deliver high-quality software at a rapid pace.

Therefore, it’s no wonder that software testers are in great demand, and that demand will only increase in the future! According to global market insights, the software testing market size exceeded USD 40 billion in 2020 and is estimated to grow at over 7% CAGR from 2021 to 2027. 

If you are just starting out in testing or have been doing it for a while, you should read this article till the end. This two-part series discusses ten things you should learn as a new software tester to navigate a successful career in software testing. Let’s get started!

1. Fundamentals of Software Testing

New Software Tester- A new software tester should know the testing fundamentals

Solid foundations serve as essential building blocks for a tester’s success. Some freshers undergo testing training before pursuing a career. However, the majority of people get into testing by accident and do not receive any kind of testing training.

Hence it’s crucial to identify and address the knowledge gap in your fundamentals. Testing fundamentals cover the knowledge about basic testing concepts, terminologies, levels of testing, testing approaches, testing techniques, test case design, psychology of testing, test management, defect tracking, etc.

Numerous online resources are available for testers, but some are inaccurate and misleading. There are several software testing misconceptions. If you are already trained in testing, there is still a good chance that you may need to unlearn and relearn a few things that you have been taught.  

2. Bug Advocacy 

New Software Tester- Bug advocacy

A bug report is the most visible part of a tester’s work 🐞 It shapes how your readers perceive you. Bug reports are not just technical reports. They are persuasive writing. Hence, writing an excellent bug report is essential for new and veteran software testers.

A good bug report should have all the technical information required for the developer to fix the bug. Furthermore, it should capture the information stakeholders to decide which bugs to prioritize. 

A tester’s job does not end after creating a bug report; it also involves advocating to fix the correct bugs at the right time.  Bug advocacy is about making people want to fix your bug by anticipating and dealing with objections.

However, testers need to realize that it is not up to them to decide whether or not a bug is fixed. The business makes the decision by considering various factors. Bug advocacy is bringing forth the facts about bugs, presenting them clearly, and then leaving the decision to the business.

3. Software Development Methodologies – Agile

Agile methodologies

To develop software, organizations utilize a wide variety of development methodologies. Agile software development has been around for more than two decades and now has become the de facto approach for software development. In recent years, there has been a meteoric rise in Agile adoption.

There are several collaborative Agile frameworks, such as XP (Extreme Programming), Scrum, Kanban, etc. Scrum is, without a doubt, the most popular agile methodology used by teams worldwide. 

Scrum is an iterative, incremental agile model where testers work in cross-functional and self-organizing teams to deliver high-quality software. In contrast to traditional development methodologies, teams work in shorter time slots, known as sprints ⌚

Testing is embedded into the development process and aims to discover bugs as early as possible. In Scrum, the team receives feedback from end-users, allowing for the continuous improvement of the software product. 

As a new software tester, you should understand the principles of Agile and how to work in a collaborative environment. Preparing to work in an agile workspace will boost your confidence as a new tester.

4. Proficiency In A Programming Language

Learning programming

It is not necessary to know a programming language to begin working as a tester. However, learning coding concepts will make you far more effective. Testers, in my opinion, should be familiar with at least one programming language. This expertise will lay a strong foundation for a test automation career.

Unfortunately, most of the new testers start chasing automation tools at the start of their career. Software testing is commonly misunderstood as non-technical; programming is only required to automate tests.

There are countless benefits of learning programming 🔍 Learning to code gives you superpowers. It helps you with your day-to-today tasks such as test data generation, automating repetitive processes and tasks, and non-functional testing such as security, load, and performance testing, among other things. 

The most popular programming languages among testers are Java, Javascript, and Python. There are a plethora of resources available for beginners, so choose the one that feels appropriate to you. Look for everyday testing tasks and ways to put your newfound skills to work once you’ve started learning a programming language.

5. Test Documentation


Test the documentation

When working as a tester, you’re expected to generate a set of artifacts throughout the development process. These test artifacts provide information and insight into the testing process to stakeholders. Documentation reduces uncertainty about software testing activities, increases transparency, and enables a systematic approach to testing 📜

Regardless of your career path, documentation is vital to your career success. The documents you create reflect your quality of work and professionalism. Newbie testers should learn to develop common test artifacts such as the test strategy, test plan, test cases, test summary, reports, etc.

The testing documentation style can slightly differ depending on every organization’s maturity. The critical aspects of each artifact, however, remain the same.

You can learn more about IEEE-829 and its templates for testing artifacts on the internet. Once you’ve grasped the concept of documentation, you can use mind maps or one-page test plans to create leaner documentation.


A career in software testing offers fantastic opportunities and growth prospects. It’s up to you to make the best of it. There are plenty of things you will learn during your testing career, but nothing teaches you better than your own experience.

However, focusing on the things mentioned in this article early in your career as a new software tester expedites your success. What are you waiting for? Start learning by going through the resources listed in this article.

Go to part 2


About the author

Prashant Hegde

Prashant Hegde is a passionate testing leader. He is experienced in building and leading high-performing teams. Prashant heads the QA team at MoEngage, a leading insights-led customer engagement platform. Prashant enjoys sharing his experiences by contributing to software testing communities worldwide. Prashant is an avid blogger and a frequent speaker at industry conferences.

LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/prazhegde/

Website – https://www.prashanthegde.biz

Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdWXf_z7S9l4yjMAki_ERfw

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