How I changed my jobs from working as financier to QA Engineer at Wix

Alena Kapatsyn – QA Engineer and junior Product Manager, Wix.com

How was your University time?

I studied in Ukraine and dreamed to be a financier.

I got Master degree and diploma with honor and really good and useful “full charged” package of advice from my teachers.

  • To work with sources (to improve a skill of fast searching information)
  • To analyze things before making decisions
  • To use logic but don’t forget about the phrase “shit happens” and be ready
  • To set goals/KPI’s for any process (planning)
  • To count money 🙂 This always matter

As a financier, I got a position in the big company after getting my diploma. 1 year later I decided to change my direction.What was wrong with me? Why? It just wasn’t so interesting in real life as was in theory in the University. I was disappointed. My next step in my life was to find my place under the Sun.

Why did you Seekout a career in QA engineering?

If you will ask me – why I chose QA direction after the finance area – I can give you an answer. It was interesting for me to make any product better for people. I really wanted to do something that can “feel” after.No matter service or product or application.Anything. I wanted to be proud of something that can be shown to my friends and family. I was ready to  tell “the story” of this application or site or product.

What was your first job or nuggets from jobs you had that helped you to get to where you are today?

From my degree and the first job position I got a lot.

I had knowledge how to research, analyze and gather data on the present status (monthly/yearly).

I was analyzing economical and techie information and running statistical polls.

I could find dependencies between things and processes and could think as global as local. I modulated scenarios and “forecasts”. I had strong analytical skills for numbers.

I did a course in one company for getting basic knowledge about QA and covered around 20 different sources by myself.

How did you prepare for an interview?

  • I did research about the company – its direction and status. Tried to find as much information as I could.
  • I tried to guess what type of questions can I get. There are tons of articles about the interviews and how you should behave there.
  • I created a little speech about myself and learned it (5-6 sentences about yourself) .I can help to get yourself together in nervous moments.
  • I checked via google maps the address of the office to plan my time for arriving in time.
  • I prepared my clothes in the evening.
  • I arrived in time.
  • I put all contacts and instructions how to find the office for the interview in my Notes to the phone in case if I forget names.
  • I prepared one joke in case if I would not have something to say 🙂 In such situation, you can’t fail If you don’t give up – and can show that you have the sense of humor.

What can you recommend on CV?

Use only 1 page for the whole CV.

Put only relevant information about the relevant job. For example. If you want to get QA position – don’t tell about your experience as a seller in book shop.

Don’t use the photo in the CV.

Advice for someone looking for job?

Try to find the companies where you will “feel” the product. Not only be a part of the staff.

As for me, it’s very important to live with a product or leave it.

Prepare an answer for the employer Why do you want to work here. It’s also good to understand it for yourself.

Why do you think you were selected among other candidates?

  • I really wanted to get the job in my company and it was possible to see in my eyes 🙂
  • I smiled a lot but answered all technical questions.
  • I was confident during the whole interview process.
  • I had English speech – Why I am a good candidate and what company will win with my as a new member.
  • I was ready to spend all my free time to get a new knowledge,skills for the position.
  • Bottom line – I was only one person without experience in QA area before that was hired ! People trusted me!
  • Lessons from jobs that you couldn’t get.
  • You can get any lesson – it’s always up to you.
  • A lot of things depend on the level of your “openness” to the new people and new knowledge.

Things are changing very fast in every field, how do you keep yourself update. Please list blogs, podcasts, or any techniques that you follow etc

It’s hard to define some of them.

Every task requires different needs to verify, to be aware of, to learn.

In general:

I like Medium – there is a chance to search a topic that you need.

https://medium.com/@alenakapatsyn

Intercom – https://blog.intercom.com/?confirmation=success

https://community.uservoice.com/blog/top-10-product-management-blogs/

My favorite book – REWORK (J.Fried and D.Heinemeier Hansson)

Some tips personally from me:

  1. Don’t be cold as cucumber!

People love candidates with passion and this is what I usually prefer to find during the interviews. It’s possible to hire a person with a gap in some area but with energie and fire inside.

  1. Find your mentor.Try to learn from him/her.
  2. Stick to people/sources that will inspire you.

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