Ever wondered what a quality assurance engineer really does? Lokesh Radhakrishnan shares his experience of being a QA Manager at Indeed Hyderabad.
Growing up, Lokesh Radhakrishnan always had a passion to understand how things worked.
“During my childhood, I would break open toys to see the mechanics of them and would try to put them back unsuccessfully,” he says.
As he grew older, his curiosity extended from toys to electronics and computers, so becoming a Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer seemed like a natural progression for him.
“But another reason could be that I was afraid of coding when I was at school, so the next thing that you could do in IT is testing’!” he jokes.
A graduate of the University of Madras, he still has memories of building “fun” projects while in college, using HTML, Java and C++. This extended into his early career as a test engineer where he built automated test suites using Java and Python.
Lokesh then joined Indeed in 2015, and is currently based in Hyderabad, India. As a QA Manager now, he says one of the biggest joys at work is when he’s been able to support his peers’ growth.
He reckons one of the biggest misconceptions of being a QA engineer is that they are the only ones who are responsible for the quality of the product.
“To me, everyone is involved in product development, which includes quality assurance and testing teams who are responsible for product quality.”
He recalls when he first started at Indeed, a lot of managers weren’t trained to be growth partners.
“We would rarely meet with individuals we manage and discuss their growth opportunities,” he shares.
Growth has been a huge part of his own career at Indeed. Lokesh joined the organization first as a QA Manager, then spent four years working his way up to a senior QA Manager role.
“I learned a lot of the people management basics in Indeed,” he says. “There was a stark difference in how Indeed sees people management compared to other organizations.
“Indeed cares for people so much that it allows people managers to come in, take the time to learn things and then start managing people.”
For Lokesh, Indeed’s philosophy of doing things, which he describes as people-focused, was one of the most important lessons he learnt.
He adds anyone looking to break into the industry should first try to understand the skills that would help them grow. After having picked up those skills, he suggests applying them and seeing if it works well, iterating on them and continuing to improve.
“Keep up with the changes that are happening in the industry and pick up skills that are important to succeed,” he advises. “Identify a mentor who can guide you through tough times by giving career or general advice.”
He adds the start of anyone’s career is a good time to learn the basics of your role.
“Focus on learning the skills and learning them well,” he says. “This will help build the knowledge that could help you be successful for years to come. Focus on the process of gaining knowledge from your peers and mentors than trying to achieve results.
“Staying patient and building a strong foundation at this point is important.”
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