Jo Mahadevan at desk with laptop

How I became a software tester

This International Women’s Day, we wanted to celebrate by speaking to women who work at Registers of Scotland who are in roles you wouldn’t necessarily associate with a land registry – from solicitors, to GIS analysts, to customer service professionals our organisation has a wealth of talent, and we want to tell you about it…

‘My name is Jo and I’m a software professional’

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 the test practice.

RoS is all about its people. My favourite thing about working here is being part of a community. I’ve had the opportunity to work and interact with people who have worked in RoS for years with decades of experience. They are so humble, very supportive and have embraced change with so much optimism. It is a pleasure to listen to their experiences and stories about how they felt on their first day at work and how much the organisation has evolved since then.

‘Software testing was something that came natural to me’

Growing up I was very much into gaming, maths, computing and design. I always envisioned a profession in design and I wanted to be a chip designer. I graduated with an engineering degree in electronics. However I decided to take up a software engineering job as I really liked the independence the job gave me and there was so much to learn too.

Back in 2004 I started as an analyst programmer and at that time there wasn’t any specific stream for software testing. I was in the customer support team and my job was to fix and support live issues. I was always able to reproduce live issues with minimal information supplied by our customers. I used to test my code, test the application, try various scenarios to validate and verify my fix before deploying the change. My leaders noticed that I was a test infected developer and made me responsible for testing, reviewing code and bug fixes for other developers in my team. A couple of years later, I jumped at the opportunity to become a technical tester, I realised that testing was something that came natural to me.

Photo of Jo as she types on laptop

‘There’s still a lot for me to achieve, learn and deliver’

I would say my biggest career achievement (to date) is being enthusiastic about doing the right thing at my job, seeking inspiration from people I work with and learning something new every day. I think every other milestone/hurdle I have crossed career-wise has got me where I am right now, but there’s still a lot for me to achieve, learn and deliver.

I support the drive for gender equality by trying my best to set an example and promote a change in the attitudes, values and beliefs that has caused us to differentiate people based on their gender, colour, culture etc, both at work and at any social setting.

I think as a parent, it is also about teaching boys that it is okay to feel vulnerable and show their emotions, and teaching girls that there is no need to act weak when they feel strong — there’s nothing unfeminine about being competitive and striving to be a leader.

Find out more!

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