How did your career in the IT industry start?
As a child, I got my first Atari 800XE computer and the book “Atari Basic for Kids”. I got fascinated by the programming world. However, we had less access to knowledge then, so the next small steps were only high school and the Pascal language and Fortran. Then, studies at the Rzeszow University of Technology in the field of Computer Science. During my studies, I worked at Orange as a technical customer advisor. As it turned out, the job had nothing to do with programming, but because I was promoted to Team Leader pretty quickly and then to a section manager, I stayed there for 8 long years. After this period, I submitted my CV to SoftSystem and after the recruitment process, I started my dream job in the IT industry.
How did your cooperation with our company begin?
A few of my friends really liked working at SoftSystem, so I decided to take a risk and start my career all over again. Since the break in programming was very long in my case, I submitted my CV for the position of manual tester. I joined quite a small and very particular team. We tested practically every genetic application, as well as our web-based Portal project. While testing the Portal, the then Programmer’s Manager – Michał Madera showed me the Selenium application for automated testing. Things moved very quickly then. I managed to “infect” other team members with my passion for programming, and I felt that I was ready for the next stage. I took part in the internal recruitment for the position of Automated Tests Programmer. After successfully passing the recruitment process, I started working, and over time I managed to be promoted to the AT Programming Team Leader, who I am until today 😊
What does your job consist in and what are your tasks in projects? Tell us a little bit more.
The team is divided into two groups: the first group tests applications performance, and the second group tests their functionality. I am the Team Leader of the testers responsible for the functional part. My job is to code the test scenarios to reflect the user’s work as much as possible. Our tests in the application simulate mouse-clicking, typing text from the keyboard and a whole range of other operations. The most simple scenarios take about three minutes, while the most complicated ones take more than two hours. Automated testing ensures that the process of checking a given scenario is always the same and that nothing is left out.
How is the job of a Manual Tester different from working in your position?
The testing process itself is quite similar, with the difference that the Manual Tester performs all operations in the application, and in our team, the program does it. Moreover, checking the requirements for how the application is supposed to work looks the same. However, this is where the similarities end. When our script reports an error, we first have to analyze whether the problem lies with the application or our code. Analyzing the Automated Test Report and what happened earlier in the test requires some programming knowledge. In turn, the second part of our work, i.e. the coding itself and maintaining ready-made testing scenarios, is the same work as the programmers do.
What tools and technologies do you use in your daily work?
I use Visual Studio and code in C #. However, a program that allows integration with genetic applications, the so-called “Agent”, is Silk4Net. It is a professional tool that enables automated testing of both traditional desktop and web applications. Our project has many ways to run the application and perform the operations encoded in the test. We do not record our scripts, but all commands must be coded in C #. We run the test and then all the magic happens Everything clicks, types, checks the content for the first time by itself, which really makes a big impression on everyone.
The greatest success in your career so far is …
I have very fond memories of each promotion. But the special moment is the information that I received from my current Manager Ania Kociuba, namely that I passed the exam and she invited me to join her team. I got my first contract and was called Programmer Additionally, as I mentioned, while working as a Manual Tester I infected my colleagues with a passion for coding. Today, practically everyone from my first team is a Programmer, which I am very happy about.
You teach the classes at the University of Information Technology and Management in Rzeszów in the field of Software Testing, of which we are the Patron – tell us more about it.
It is a very interesting project. The staff consists of professional lecturers (UITM employees) and people with experience in the IT industry (employees of our company). Such a mixture gives very positive effects because not only do the students get useful theoretical knowledge, but they also immediately know what the Tester’s work looks like. During the first edition, my subject, ‘Automated Testing’, was 16 hours long and was treated rather as a curiosity. However, the subject received very positive opinions. Therefore, in the next editions, the number of classes doubled. For me, it is also a very interesting experience and motivation to constantly improve my qualifications. The effects of our cooperation are visible because the vast majority of graduates decide to try their hand in the IT industry.
We are currently recruiting for the position of Programmer AT for your team – what tips would you give to potential candidates? How should they prepare for the recruitment meeting?
For this position, knowledge of the basics of programming is required, because our scripts are created in C #. Before the exam, it is worth practicing solving basic algorithms, tasks operating on boards and lists. In our work, we perform many operations on variables of the ‘string’ type, so I recommend learning such tasks, too. Our team includes people who are more involved in the testing process, as well as those who spend more time working on our project. Additionally, we are developing our automated testing tool written in Java. Therefore, everyone will find something for themselves and will have the opportunity to develop.
Why would you recommend working at SoftSystem?
As you can see in my example, the SoftSytem company gives the opportunity for development and promotion. There is a great atmosphere and what is also very important, despite the fact that the company is very large, it is not a typical corporate job. The variety of projects, investing in new technologies, and the possibility of visiting our foreign clients are just some of the many benefits of working in our company. In my opinion, this is a great place to start a career in the IT industry. However, also experienced employees will definitely find a place for themselves here.
What are your interests and passions outside of work?
I love football, both playing and watching matches. As a child, my whole room was covered with posters, and whenever there was such a possibility, I collected the players’ autographs. Before the pandemic, at work, I organized Thursday football games, which also allowed us to integrate with various teams. Now we only have Monday’s overview of European events at stadiums and mini-quizzes on sports knowledge