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Created on 30.05.2022

IT jobs: What does an independent tester actually do?

Beat Rüegsegger, Independent e2e Testing Lead for Core Banking with PostFinance, provides an insight into what an independent tester does, and explains what skills the role requires.

Beat Rüegsegger, what do independent testers do?

The eight-strong team in the Independent e2e Testing department for Core Banking is responsible for creating and maintaining test cases. Independent testers prepare and implement test cases. Put simply, we check a piece of software meets specific requirements and look for faults. Most tests are performed manually. Ideally, test cases are automated. To achieve this, a tool records all the steps we follow during the test, and carries them out independently during a subsequent run.

What exactly does independent testing entail?

We receive an assignment, for instance to test e-finance login. The specifications stipulate that users must be taken to the homepage once they have entered their username and password. If a fault does occur – for instance, the user is taken to a different page or to a different language version of the page – we report this to the developer via a fault ticket. They then rectify the fault, and send us the request again for retesting. If everything runs according to specifications, the test has been completed successfully, and the application is ready to be put into operation.

What’s your role, and what do you particularly enjoy doing?

I’m the technical lead in the team. My main role is to plan tests within my team, coordinate assignments with our stakeholders (e.g. developers and the technical department), to allocate resources, draw up reports and review requirements. What I really like about my job is how it combines technical expertise and a broad knowledge of banking.

What are the challenges of independent testing?

There’s the increasing complexity and ever-faster pace of development: to respond to changes on the market quicker, there are four rather than two releases a year now. We’re in a hybrid phase right now as PostFinance is in the process of changing its methodology. In the past, the application was the starting point, whereas in future, processes will be. In addition to our day-to-day business, we are also switching from central testing to a decentralized, agile form of testing, which requires greater coordination.

What’s your professional and educational background?

I did a banking traineeship. After ten years working for UBS, I then switched to Swisscom to work in testing. 16 years ago, I wanted to return to the financial sector, so I applied to PostFinance – and I’ve never looked back. For anyone looking to get into testing, they’ll need, in addition to professional experience, a degree in (business) information technology and a strong interest in banking, or a degree in business administration with technical expertise. Specific training courses in testing would be ideal additional qualifications as well – e. g. ISTQB training. Knowledge of test automation is another plus.

What specific skills and abilities do you need for this role?

You need to be flexible. After all, no matter how hard we plan, things can always change. You have to be tenacious, because the developers sometimes see things differently to the way we do. You also need a healthy dose of curiosity as we’re constantly dealing with new things.

Why did you apply to PostFinance?

When I saw the position as a tester for PostFinance at the time, I was enthusiastic: an exciting role in my dream combination, testing and finance, and in Bern to boot. I also knew a few people who worked for PostFinance and were really happy with their employer.

What do you like your job at PostFinance?

PostFinance offers its staff a lot of flexibility. In our department, we have a lot of freedom within the framework we work in. For instance, we do one fixed day a week in the office, and the rest of the week we can choose whether to work from home or on site.

Why would you recommend applying for an IT job at PostFinance?

In addition to the freedom I mentioned, PostFinance also supports training programmes and allows you to temporarily change roles. You can also develop and advance in your career. PostFinance fosters a culture where it’s OK to make mistakes, and where you can afford to be brave. Anyone who wants to break new ground and make a difference would definitely enjoy working in our team.


Beat Rüegsegger

Beat Rüegsegger is Independent e2e Testing Lead for Core Banking at PostFinance.

In which case, the next stop in your IT career is PostFinance

PostFinance is moving forward: we are spearheading digitization and are not only continuously investing in new technologies and innovations, but in skills as well. In short: we look forward to welcoming IT pioneers such as you, who will be a driving force in helping us to shape the future. Interested in a taking up an exciting challenge in a dynamic environment?

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