For our latest post, we hear from our friends over at Lloyds Banking Group, this time delving into the journey of Quality Engineer, Charlotte Gaynor. Get into her story below!
From Software Tester to Quality Engineer: Charlotte's Journey
“If you’d spoken to me four years ago, I was a different person. I still have those self-doubts, but they're no longer all consuming.”
Although I’ve technically been working in the IT industry for 15 years as a software tester, there was little in the way of technical skills or coding knowledge required back then. Basically, you followed a test script – actions that a user would take on an application or a site – and make sure that it worked in the way it was expected to.
Once I’d joined Lloyds however, I was given the opportunity to work with a mentor who helped me to learn to code and to learn test automation. That led to me getting a place on the degree apprenticeship course, learning Software Engineering. I’m just going into my third year at university – and I think I'm the oldest student in the class. Right now I primarily use Java. But then I also touch on VB Script and C# as well.
My team works under the Chief Technology Officer and we come under an umbrella of Engineering Services. There is a Quality Engineering Centre of Excellence, which is where I’m based.
We're building out a standardised set of frameworks that other teams can use to implement test automation. I have been involved in the coding, although I’m still learning that side of things. I do get my hands dirty, and I enjoy the opportunity to do that. But I'm also involved with promoting the project internally and setting up training courses, writing them, facilitating them, and running them, so it's quite varied.
Uncovering hidden confidence
I suffered a lot of anxiety and impostor syndrome when I started. I think that was coming to a new company after working in the same place for 20 years. I was thinking “what am I going to do to combat this?” I decided that I needed to upskill: having the opportunity to do the apprenticeship has helped me gain the knowledge to speak in my arena with confidence.
If I'm on a conference call with other quality engineers, software developers, or
people in the delivery team, I feel a lot more knowledgeable now. I've got something to contribute and something to say.
I've been really successful, and I put it down to the support that I've got from Lloyds, as well as the colleagues and the team that I've been in. They’ve really helped me to flourish. So much so, my journey has gone full circle. I’m now helping to run training courses for test automation and working with other colleagues who have been in a similar position to me to upskill and guide them on their journey.
I've taken control, I’ve pushed things forward, and Lloyds has been the support and the enabler behind it. I mean – how brilliant at my age to be able to go and do a degree at a university like Manchester Metropolitan.
And that's it!
If you’d like to join the team at Lloyds Banking Group, then create a profile on the hackajob platform, where they’re currently hiring for a variety of roles or log in to your profile here.
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