SDET, fully known as Software Design Engineer in Test, runs tests and obtains quick feedback for developers. This article will look at some of the questions you should expect in an SDET interview. We hope that these will help you prepare well for your interview.
1. What are You Interested in this Software Development Engineering in Test Role?
I love everything to do with computer software. Having been exposed to coding at a young age, I find related tasks easy and manageable. I would love to meet new challenges and write different testing automation while setting up the same for different platforms. Working here will also allow me to explore my creativity and improve every day.
2. What are Some of the Roles of an SDET?
A software design engineer in test works as part of the test team instead of the product development team. They not only write but also test codes. Their main role is to review design creations for different production software. These individuals write frameworks and tools for product testing. They normally have advanced programming skills that are indispensable in manual testing fields. SDETs mainly focus on robustness, overall performance, and testability of product software.
3. What are the Qualities that an SDET Needs to be Successful?
There are several qualities that an SDET needs to be successful. They include excellent time management skills since timelines and deadlines have to be adhered to in product testing and development; strong communication skills given that SDETs work with different teams and organizations and therefore need to relay information and network; passion for designing since it is the SDET’s main role, and lots of technical experience and expertise. A software design engineer in the test must also be hardworking and disciplined to meet the set deadlines and offered timelines and knowledgeable on software products.
4. Mention Some of the Challenges you faced in Your Former Roles. How Did You Overcome Them?
The main challenge that I faced in my former role was tight deadlines. I had less than a week to test even some of the most complicated software, given that our client base was highly demanding. This was a different work environment from my former workplace, and therefore I experienced a hard time at first. I had to adapt, work overtime, and collaborate with others to survive. However, I finally learned how to prioritize work and plan ahead for testing and development purposes.
5. Mention Your Daily Routine
As an SDET, I normally spend my day in and around software development teams to contribute to and design products. I am normally occupied trying to understand different project documents, testing bugs, reporting, creating, and executing different tests. I handle communications with different stakeholders and work with deployment teams to resolve issues most of the time. I also link up with the design teams and give them my input; suggest and come up with different teams activities, and network with others.
6. Briefly Mention Your Experience
This is my tenth year in software development but my fifth as an SDET. I have worked in different firms and teams, helping develop and test different software. My experience over the years has taught me how to develop high-performance codes and design excellent testing frameworks. I have spent all these years building, deploying, running, and managing applications. Thanks to my team working experience, I know how to influence program management, development, and design teams on different implementations and user issues. The technical and non-technical skills I have gathered in this field will help me do a better job once I get this chance.
7. Mention Some of the Strategies and Mindset Needed for this Role
A strategy that every SDET should have is equally investing in both their development and testing abilities. This is because this role requires a blend of both worlds. These professionals play an important role in software development and testing processes. Therefore, having both abilities means that they are suited for these roles. As for the right mindset, an SDET should stay positive, which helps maintain the great attitude necessary for this role. An SDET can inspire other team members to work hard and give their best by staying positive.
8. What is the Main Challenge that You Foresee in this Job?
I have dealt with several challenges in my career and can confidently say that they cut across regardless of the workplace. I do not, therefore, expect any specific challenge in this workplace. As for flexibility, I believe that I am highly flexible and will always be available if called upon. Anyway, I will be better positioned to identify any new challenges once I get this job since I will get the chance to experience the workplace.
9. How Do You Stay Motivated in This Field?
I love coding and everything related to software development and testing. I, therefore, enjoy being an SDET, which explains why I am good at it. I love identifying bugs and writing testing frameworks and do not struggle with motivation in this job. I also know that things get pretty challenging and stressful at times in the workplace. I turn to my support system made up of friends during such times. I also understand the role I play on my team and know that I can’t let them down. I will not struggle with motivation once I get this job. I believe that it is also worth mentioning that I meditate a lot- an activity that improves my focus and motivation once I come to the workplace.
10. Mention a Time that You Failed in this Role. What Did You Learn?
I have had a good time as an SDET. I haven’t had several instances of failure, given my passion for this job, thoroughness, and expertise. However, I once failed to identify a bug that became a major concern for end-users. I reviewed it and discovered that my test framework was faulty, which explained why the bug escaped me. I was multitasking at the time and wasn’t thorough enough when coming up with it. I nowadays prefer organizing myself, prioritizing tasks, and sticking to one role at a time.
11. Why Do You Feel You are The Most Suitable Candidate Out of All the Applicants?
I can’t talk on behalf of the other applicants, but I believe that my experience in this field puts me ahead of the competition. This is my seventh year as an SDET and tenth as a general software engineer. I have gained many skills and expertise, which has seen me reach where I am. I can build test frameworks faster than most SDETs. I am also thorough in my work, an attribute that helps me identify even the most elusive bugs. Moreover, I am passionate and dedicated- qualities make me give my all to this career.
12. What is Your Greatest Achievement?
I have managed to achieve several things in my career. However, working for Twitter at one point in my career tops them all. I was selected out of 1000 SDETs from some of the reputable firms in the world. I managed to fulfill my dream of working for this online platform at the early age of 26. It also taught me many important things and aspects of software development, which opened many doors. I believe that I wouldn’t be where I am if not for my short stint at Twitter.
13. Explain the Difference Between Priority and Severity
These two keywords are critical in the IT industry, especially for production support activities and existing systems. Priority normally defines how important an issue is, whereas severity refers to the impact or destruction ability of the issue. To shed more light on it, these issues are concerns raised by end-users to the customer care team or helpdesk or created directly by end-users on specific software.
14. Can You Tell Us Any Difference Between SDET and a Manual Tester?
Even though there are several differences between these two individuals, there is only one primary distinction. A software development engineer in test normally takes part in test automation, among many other responsibilities. However, a manual tester is not involved in test automation or related activities. This explains why SDETs cannot be considered as manual testers.
15. What Do You Understand by Ad-hoc Testing?
Ad-hoc testing is a type of testing done on an ad-hoc basis. It does not consider any reference or proper inputs to a given test case and is normally done without planning or documentation. It normally executes different flows of an application or functionality, thus establishing defects and breaking the application. This type of testing informally identifies bugs in an application. Its main advantage is that any team member can do it. Even though finding bugs between test cases can be difficult, Ad-hoc testing can help SDET identify bugs that couldn’t possibly be found through normal testing.
16. What are Some of the Main Tasks that Consume Your Day as a Software Development Engineer in Test?
There are three main tasks that take up a huge part of my day. In fact, they also apply to a manual tester. These are: Understanding the project requirements, preparing and executing given test cases according to the client needs and functionalities, and reporting any identified bugs. However, it doesn’t end there. After a bug has been identified, the developer must redeliver and ensure that it is done away with.
17. How Do You Normally Decide When a Product is Ready to Move Into the Live Environment?
This is a decision that rests with the management. The developer and tester are not normally involved. The management will test the product to ensure that it is bugless by validating bug reports from the tester, looking at any resolution, and confirming whether retesting was done or not. They must also run automated test cases to ensure that new functionalities do not break current ones. Before a product goes live, management also validates test coverage reports to ensure that the test cases cover all the developing components. Once everything is in order, the product will go live.
18. Can You Tell Us about Alpha and Beta Testing?
Alpha testing is often done before releasing the product to the live environment. It identifies bugs before the product is released to real users and qualifies as user acceptance testing. On the other hand, beta testing is often conducted by the real users of the application. It takes place in the real environment as opposed to the former. It is, therefore, accurate to say that alpha testing takes part at the developer’s site, whereas beta testing is conducted at the client’s location.
19. What Do You Understand by Risk-Based Testing?
In risk-based testing, the functionalities of a product are tested based on the deliverables’ priority. It, therefore, examines the vital features of a product and the impact it will have on the business. It also determines the probability of failure of these features. This type of testing first tests the high priority functionalities, followed by the medium and then the low priority functionalities. Risk-based testing is normally conducted when there is less time to test product functionalities.
20. How Do You Normally Overcome the Challenge of Documentation in Testing?
I understand that one of the biggest obstacles SDETs face is unavailable documentation for different kinds of test cases. However, the client still expects the product to be delivered on time. I normally refer to the client’s mail, which I am sure has all the requisite information. I also go through different screenshots of the application detailing the changes that need to be made. I normally record my phone discussions with clients, which inform me of the changes that need to be executed in different functionalities.
21. Kindly Explain What a Test Plan is?
A test plan is a document that has the resources, objectives, and processes for a given software or hardware test. It normally encompasses a detailed understanding of the final workflow. It also contains the schedule of proposed testing activities. For a test plan to be complete, the tester must identify different test items such as the testing tasks, risks involved in the testing process, and the features to be tested. This is normally confused with the test script when the two are different.
22. What Do You Understand by a Test Script?
A test script is an accumulation of instructions needed to be performed on a given system to determine if it functions as it is supposed to. It, therefore, guides the testing process and can alternatively be defined as a short program that tests a given portion of a software product’s functionality. It is also worth mentioning that a test script can also be referred to as an automated test script, given that the testing is done automatically. The test script is normally written in coding language, making it different from the test plan.
23. Kindly Explain What Code Inspection Is?
Also known as code review, code inspection is a quality assurance process in which an inspector or a number of experts review and read parts of a source code to identify defects. It is normally done by trained individuals who peer-review work products following a well-laid down process. A person who conducts code inspection is an inspector, and as a general rule, the code inspector cannot approve a product if it has a defect. It is a necessary procedure that must be adhered to.
24. What Do You Understand by Configuration Management?
Configuration management refers to the processes involved in the coordination, control, and tracking of documentation, code, problems, change requests, the person making changes, designs, patches, and tools in a given system. This process aims to establish and ensure the consistent performance of a product. It also ensures that the functionality and physical attributes of the product are consistent with its requirements, operational information, and design. In simple terms, configuration management tracks individual configuration items in a given system. It normally comes in handy in maintaining servers, computer systems, and software in an ever-excellent state.
25. What is Your Greatest Strength as SDET?
I believe that my greatest strength is my passion for software development and testing. I love what I do. I am always willing to exert and give my all if called upon. It influenced my decision to pursue this field and has helped me overcome the challenges I have faced so far. It also pushes me to yearn for more, an attribute that has seen me willing to learn continuously and get better each passing day. I am also a good team player, given my experience in team settings. I know how to work well with others. I am positive that it will come in handy in this job.
These are some of the questions you should expect on SDET interviews. Make sure that you convince the interviewer that you have extensive technical knowledge and expertise to land the job.