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A Day in the Life - Gemma

QA Engineer (Hungerford, UK)

How long have you worked for Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS)?

I have worked for Kerridge CS for nearly 11 years now. I started in the support department back in 2005 as an accounts support consultant, resolving customer queries.

My background before working here was accountancy. I had worked for an accounts company for 3 years after finishing college. After about 5 years at Kerridge CS I moved to the consultancy team, implementing systems and training customers. In 2012 I moved to the QA department and have been in this team for 4 years now.

Describe a typical day

The best thing for me about all the roles I have had at Kerridge CS is that they never get repetitive, as the work depends on the customers. In QA I might be testing an issue reported by a customer or an enhancement to the software, which could be small or large.

I determine the range of tests to carry out from the specification or the replication document and also based on knowledge of the systems functionality and how the customers will use it.

The testing includes not only finding defects but also ensuring continuity of the systems functionality between different modules, so any new enhancements feel natural to customers using it for the first time.

Occasionally changes are also demonstrated to the customer either via screen share and conference calling or in a face to face meeting, so I also get to demonstrate the functionality which I have tested.

With regards to the large enhancements they also require demonstrating to other staff members, for example the support department, so they know how to use and support the new functionality.

What do you like best about KCS?

The other staff members are amazing here and it quickly starts to feel like you are part of one big family. I feel like I have so much in common with everyone and they are all really easy to work alongside.

As the system is so large there are different people who have a more in-depth knowledge of different areas of the system and as a tester I am required to test quite a range of areas but I always feel quite comfortable to ask anyone for their time. I also have to work closely with the programmers and consultants over the course of a project.

Another great thing about working here is being able to head over to the gym in my lunch break to do a class, or go out for a run with colleagues.

What would be useful for new hires to know about KCS?

The company is serious about training, last year I completed my Foundation ISTQB qualification and it has already been agreed that I will attend a course for the Advanced ISTQB qualification later this year.

In the past the company has also paid for me to complete the Technical level of the AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) qualification.

There is an active social group here as well, this year we have played bingo, been paintballing and bowling. Future planned events for this year include orienteering and ice-skating. It makes it easy to get to meet people from other departments which in turn makes it feel easier to work as part of a team.

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