Freelance Testers – a smarter, cost effective way for startups

ITnews had an article recently on startups. It examines what to look for in a startup, and also how to minimise the risks. Here’s an excerpt:

A startup’s immaturity will be reflected in the quality and capabilities of its product. As you would when considering an established vendor, a CIO must conduct technical due diligence….You can minimize these risks in several ways. First, do extensive pilot testing, and start with a small deployment’

A good freelance software tester can provide real benefit to startups by verifying and/or validating software at a reasonable price. This builds confidence in a product and is useful for promotional purposes. Its also useful to demonstrate third party verification of technical claims when seeking additional funding.
This is how a freelance software tester can reduce cost yet still provide a quality service.

Freelance software testers are ‘on-demand’

The nature of software testing demands flexibility as the testing effort often fluctuates throughout a software development life cycle.

At the beginning of an SDLC, test planning, scheduling and scoping of tests takes place. It can be a very busy time for testers, scoping out whats to be tested, prioritising tests, planning and creating test cases, organising the test environment, the list can go on..

However, there’s often a lull after the initial frantic test planning. This is where all test cases are written, the test environments is ready, and testing is ready to start. The trouble is, often the software to be tested is not.

Even when the software testing starts, it can be a start, stop, start affair as major problems are found and require fixing. These are not necessarily related to code, but can be in installation, configuration etc. A tester isn’t always needed but should be on call for when testing does begin.

It goes without saying that a software tester is available during the test execution phase, and perhaps due to time demands, needs to test beyond normal work hours.

A freelance software tester works only when its needed, this is a big saving in cost. This way you can still afford a quality software tester at a lesser price.

Freelance software testers listen to the customer

A good freelance tester, will be a good listener. By understanding the demands on a business, a freelance software tester is able to adapt the testing to meet the needs. This can be a great cost saving, as needs are met first and foremost. See my post on http://www.blog.testingtimes.com.au/?p=25 for the types of questions a freelance software tester should ask.

Freelance software testers are flexible in approach

A good freelance software tester understands the three key demands placed on any software project, namely, cost, time and quality. They have the liberty to be flexible in approach to testing in order to balance quality against its natural enemies; time and cost. If time is an issue, a freelance tester is able to prioritise the testing to ensure key functionality is tested. Budgets can be effectively managed by using ‘on-demand’ testing and fast-tracking planning where possible.

Freelance software testers need to you succeed

Like any other freelancer, reputation is paramount. A freelance software tester’s reputation is built on getting excellent customer referrals. They don’t rely on big marketing budgets or a platoon of sales people for their next job. They need their client to succeed and be profitable. That way, not only does word spread, but they get repeat business. It’s in our interest to ensure that you have the best quality product to sell.

Of course many of the attributes I have described in this article can be found in software testers everywhere. However, a freelancer has the added advantage of passing these cost savings on directly to the client, without the commitment of long term contracts.

The full ITnews article can be found at http://www.itnews.com.au/News/59326,opinion-startup-fundamentals.aspx

Anne-Marie Charrett runs a software testing company that specialises in testing software for high-tech companies and startups.

49 Comments

  1. Good Day,

    I am a professional Software Tester and QA Analyst and have started freelancing for many projects around the globe.

    Please let me know if you offer freelancing services for projects in line. If so, do contact me through e-mailfor further details.

    Looking forward to hearing from you.

    Regards
    Amulya

  2. I agree that freelance software testers could be a good match for startups… but are “startups” good for a freelance software testing business? I suspect you can’t base your entire business around this market… the startups may not yet recognise the need for QA, may not have the money, could be risky, and might not have a steady flow of work.

    Perhaps the best bet is to approach the investors that fund the startups and act on their behalf. Or perhaps approach the startups that have well and truly “started” and now have recognised the need for QA and are ready to take the next step…

  3. i am basheer here Working as a Team leader in Software Testing in a reputed Organization in Chennai, india . I would like to Do the freelance in Software Testing . i have A Strong Knowledge in My Field and Ability To do the Projects Effectively i need Some Advice from the Free lance Experts How i start what are the Input creterias pls Help me its my Email safinbasheer@gmail.com

  4. H e l l o ,

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    Looking forward to hearing from you.

    Regards,
    rucha

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  10. H e l l o ,

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  11. Hi,

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  12. Hi,

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  14. I’m a QA and I have 3 years of experience in the testing. I am interested in freelance software testing.
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  15. Hi,

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  16. Hi friends,

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  17. I have done M.Sc.(CS). Also I am having 4+ year of experience in Software Testing (Web based, Client Server and Standalone applications). I am expertise in Online Shopping, Travels Booking, Data Pool Management, Retails, e-Governance, Stores & Purchase, Human Resource Management. I am interested in freelance software testing.
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  18. Masters of Computer Application having 4+yrs of wide experience in Software Testing and Test Automation. Have worked on multiple Web Test Automation project using commercial as well as open source tools.

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  19. Hi,

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  22. Hi,
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  23. Hi,

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  24. I have 1+ year experience in software testing and searching for freelance projects in testing .Please send me info regarding freelance websites for software testing.
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  25. Hi,

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  26. hi
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  27. I am a professional tester. I have complied my graduation in Computer Science.

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  29. You explain complex topics in a simpler way. I am impressed by your approch. This is going to motivate us for long run down the line.
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  31. H e l l o ,

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  32. I work from home quite frequently, i am 10 years experience in the software testing field working for a very big & multinational company & leading a team of 40 QEs.

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  33. H e l l o ,

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    Thanks,
    With Regards,
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  34. Hi,

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  35. @Ketan Soni
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  37. Hello I am Software Tester with 4 Yrs of professional experience
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  38. Hi,
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    Thanks
    Nahreen
    nkrakhi@yahoo.com

  39. I am B.Tech Graduate . I want to start my Career in Software Testing.
    I am aware of all concept of Testing.. plz Tell me which is the Company where i will get the intial level of entry .
    Salary is not a Constraint for me.

  40. I am B.Tech Graduate . I want to start my Career in Software Testing.
    I am aware of all concept of Testing.. plz Tell me which is the Company where i will get the intial level of entry .
    Salary is not a Constraint for me.
    I am also a Certified tester from ISQTB
    My Mail id is Dhananjaybhtt@Gmail.com

  41. Hi,

    I have vast experience of testing various insurance projects and e-commerce sites.(around 8 yrs) and now want to do some free lancing work of software testing as well.

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    Thanks
    Kuldeep

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