To tie in with International Women’s Day, we wanted to shine a spotlight on some of the women here at Registers who are supporting our business transformation. First up, we talk to Jo about her journey to becoming a test analyst in our IT department, the challenges she’s overcome and the advice she’d give to those starting out (also we LOVE her laptop stickers).
Firstly, tell us who you are and a bit about what you do here at Registers of Scotland?
My name is Jo Mahadevan, I’m a software professional with several years of experience in IT and my expertise is in the area of software testing. I work within IT development at RoS, looking after various aspects of software testing and leading community of practice for our testers.
How did you end up in your current role? Was it different from what you expected to be doing?
I started as an analyst programmer back in 2004, at that time there wasn’t any specific stream for software testing. My leaders observed that when there was a live issue reported by our customers, I was able to reproduce the issue with limited information supplied by the customers. This meant that I had a very strong understanding of the business rules that are supported by underlying code. When fixing an issue, I would write tests to ensure that the fix would not cause a further issue. I used to try and break my code in every way possible! I soon became a developer who was responsible for QA in my team.
A couple of years later, I jumped at the opportunity to become a technical tester, I then realised that testing was something that came natural to me.
My current profession is completely different from what I wanted to be, I have an engineering degree in electronics. Growing up I was very much into gaming, maths, computing and design. I always envisioned a profession in design and I thought I would be a chip designer. However, I got distracted as I got my job soon after I graduated and I liked the independence (should have persevered, but no regrets!).
Were there any challenges you came up against on your journey?
Yes, loads of challenges and every single one has been a learning point. Sometimes I can be a challenge to myself too! Eventually, I realised that everyone needs be their own person to face any trial in life. I also feel that life without any challenge is like merely hitting the snooze button… boring!
What one piece of advice would you give to others that you wish you’d realised earlier?
It’s important to have a goal in life and in order to achieve one needs patience and perseverance. Success cannot be achieved overnight, approach your goals iteratively 😉 Agile development is not just for software!