Testers are very enthusiastic at the beginning of their career. But when learning curve is saturated they start feeling bored. They quickly get tired of writing same bug reports and executing same test cases again and again. They simply don’t feel challenged. Almost all testers have this feeling in their career at some point. Especially experienced testers don’t find any challenge and creativity in their work.
Does that mean testing is a boring job?
The answer is a resounding NO! Testing is not a boring job. Actually it can stress you to your limitations. As quoted by Michael Bolton
“Testing is continuous learning process by exploring, discovering and investigating the information you have”.
If you are passionate about software testing you will be less likely to find this as a boring job.
At some point testing can be monotonous work. But you should accept certain level of repetition. You can think of automating those repetitive tasks. Make sure to do your homework carefully before deciding to go for automation. It’s not the end solution for your boredom. You need to find different ways to bring some variety in your daily routine job.
If you ask to any experienced developer around you he will tell you how boring development job is. You can’t stop doing things as those are repetitive. Our whole life is just a sequence of repetitive tasks. Would you stop doing that? Certainly not. We continuously find and adapt to new things that entertain us. You need to find innovative ways to do same things again. You need to find and analyze why you are bored. Once you know the root cause you can work on finding solution.
Assume that you are experiencing this boredom. It might be a temporary boredom, but you need to overcome it and make sure it will not hit you anymore. How to do that? Below are the things I do when this feeling comes in my mind. I’m sure these will work for you as well.
16 Things to do when you’re bored of testing:
1) We’re bored because there is no challenge in routine work. There are many ways to challenge yourself. One way I know work best is to challenge yourself to find 5 (or whatever count you feel challenging) critical defects in a day.
2) Stay away from negative people. They definitely have negative effect on people around them. Surround yourself with positive people. Do things that interest and motivates you.
3) Get inspired with powerful long term career goals. Where do you want to see yourself in next 5 years? Always think what you can do today to move closer to that goal and act accordingly.
4) Upgrade your skills. Specialize yourself with any testing skill, or you may even want to specialize yourself with other soft skills like communication, time management, team building and problem-solving skills.
5) Write something about the skills you learned on your job. Write article/how-to guide on subject of your expertise and share it with your co-workers or all testing teams across your company. Don’t hesitate to show off your knowledge.
6) Always reward yourself when you accomplish your goals (e.g. when you complete test cases for a project, complete automating test cases for a module within specified time frame etc.) No matter how small your goal is, celebrate and enjoy it.
7) Collaborate with QA teams from other projects. Observe their routine and grasp good things from it.
8) If you are a senior person in the team, help others to learn testing concepts and understand your project deeply.
9) Have informal discussion with developers. Discuss what they are doing, what they have developed, what scenarios they have considered, is there anything you can contribute to help them understand the product better. Warning – Some developers don’t like to discuss things with testers (there might be something like “evil testers” in their mind). Deal politely and respect others in such cases.
10) De-clutter your desk area regularly. Clean up old requirement document prints. This applies to files and folders on your computer as well. Keeping everything (time and resources) organized is a habit of successful people.
11) Don’t get stuck in a routine. Keep experimenting. It might be related to writing or executing test cases, managing testing teams or test reporting. Find new ways to do your job better. Bring in new process if you think something is not working as expected.
12) If you are bored with executing manual tests, ask your boss to assign a different task to you, may be testing task like security testing, performance testing or even automating tests using a new tool could make you more interested in your work.
13) Read more books, articles, attend testing meetup and conferences. Explore and read articles from STH archive! We have lots of good articles on various topics. J
If nothing listed above helps you, I’ve more options for you:
(Warning – these are the solutions for extreme boredom. Doing any of these should be avoided without root cause analysis of your current boredom situation)
14) Is that your project you are bored with? Ask your manager to switch you to a different project.
15) Is that your company with which you are bored? Switch to different company.
16) If you still find testing as a boring job, please switch to a different career. Maybe you are not doing what you want to do!
Software testing is exciting, challenging and fun job. To experience it, you just need to think in that perspective!