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  • #14522

    Is it possible to survive exclusively as a Manual Tester?


    [mod removed /jo]


    I think manuals testing is an important part of testing because a machine can’t do new test cases, can’t explore and do new scenarios by her self, but you can learn frameworks to automate your tests to gain more time…Time to test and think.


    Without taking a stab on the “manual vs. automated testing” discussion, I’d say Mark Twain could have talked about “manual testing” in this quote:

    The report of my illness grew out of his illness; the report of my death was an exaggeration.


    Agree that manual testing is important and cannot be replaced completely. But what about a career in only manual testing? Can a tester having no automation skills survive?


    We could look at that in a few different ways. I’m just going to assume “automation skills” means not being a programmer, so feel free to correct that. Not having automation skills and not going to learn any, in this respect, is a premise for the different options. I’ll also simplify the answer, because like Pierre de Fermat said

    I have discovered a truly marvelous proof of this, which this margin is too narrow to contain.

    I also find it too hard to cover all different nuances in the answer. So the different ways I had in my mind are:

    1. Team not existing or willing to help.
    2. Team willing to help.

    #1 If there is no team or anyone else who can help, the tester needs to find a job where “test automation” is not required. The amount/ratio of them has been decreasing (to the best of my knowledge), but I can’t see them disappearing soon. I don’t really see any reason why these jobs would disappear, either. I do, however, recognize most companies I know tend to pay a better wage for people with programming skills.

    #2 If there is a team willing to help with test automation, the tester can potentially focus on other skills. So it would also be possible to survive in this scenario. Not everyone needs same skills when a team works well together. This has been emphasized, in my experience, by Scrum where the team is responsible for delivering the work. Thus, if there is a tester who doesn’t know programming, someone else will do that instead. (If there is another tester who knows programming, they can again share some of the workload, in case programming is needed for testing.)


    Great qoute Jari!

    I would go with “it depends” but some technical knowlegde of how the system under test works is always a plus. I know testers that focus on tests that represent business transactions that cannot be easily automated. Both due to human know-how needed and due to systems being ooooold (mainframes)

    Also in life science testing and validation manually run (in lack of better word) tests will not disappear for quite some time.

    Consider also the trends of shift-left et.al



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