36 Software Testing Interview Questions With Sample Answers
By Indeed Editorial Team
Published 29 September 2021
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
Software testers perform various tests to find, report and fix various issues within software. If you're interviewing for a position as a software tester, interviewers may ask you many types of questions to test your skills and qualifications. Understanding the requirements, reviewing common questions and preparing sample answers in advance can help you make a lasting impression on the recruiter and increase your chances of making it to the next round in the recruitment process. In this article, we explain what to expect at a testing interview, list common software testing interview questions and provide sample answers.
What to expect at a software testing interview
If you're interested in pursuing a career in software testing, you can consider preparing for your interview in advance by analysing what the interviewer may want to discuss with you. Typically, an interview consists of general questions, questions about your background and experience and additional in-depth questions that test your specialised knowledge and skills directly related to the role you're applying for. This may include questions based on code fragments, interpreting software code or different types of testing.
Be sure to remember that each company maintains different standards of software testing. This means that knowing more about common practices at the organisation you're interviewing with can benefit you. To research the company thoroughly, you can talk to past and current employees or look for information about the company online.
Related: How To Become a Product Tester
General software testing interview questions
Reviewing common software testing interview questions is a great way to boost your confidence and feel more relaxed during the meeting. Here are some general questions the interviewer may want to ask to get to know you better:
Why have you decided to pursue a career as a software tester?
How did you learn about this opportunity?
What's the most challenging thing about working in this field for you?
Why are you leaving your previous job?
Could you walk us through your CV?
What was your first software test like?
What do you do after work that helps you improve your testing skills?
What's your favourite software to use?
How would you describe your personality?
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Questions about background and experience
Questions about your background and experience help interviewers understand your level of expertise and what type of training you may need if the company decides to hire you. Here are some common questions that you can prepare for:
Do you have any previous experience testing software?
Do you have experience communicating test results with clients?
Which different methods of testing have you used?
How is XPath used in testing?
How has your education prepared you for this role?
Do you prefer working independently or within a team of testers?
How would you rate your knowledge of Selenium in web testing?
Tell us about your biggest accomplishment as a software tester.
Have you ever worked as a manual software tester?
Describe a situation when your project failed and you had to explain it to the client.
These in-depth questions allow interviewers to understand your thought process and predict your behaviour while facing issues and challenges typical for the role:
If you could change one thing about how our company implements testing, what would it be?
What kind of software have you tested in the past?
What's your testing process for newly created software?
How would you approach creating an internal report after testing software for a while?
What are the essential qualities of a good software tester?
What's your favourite automated software testing tool?
What's your experience with usability testing?
How would you explain a test case to someone who doesn't work in this field?
What are the phases of the Software Testing Life Cycle?
Describe the difference between functional and non-functional testing.
Why is end-to-end testing important?
Sample answers to common software testing questions
Here are additional software testing interview questions with explanations and sample answers that you can use as inspiration while preparing for your next interview:
Do you have previous experience in software testing?
This is one of the most common questions that interviewers may ask during your interview. It helps them understand your background and how your career has looked like before you've decided to apply to their company. In your answer, you can briefly explain your journey as a tester to them, list some of your previous duties and responsibilities and describe your past projects and processes.
Example: 'This month marks five years since I first started working as a software tester. Since then, I've done both manual and automatic testing. In my previous role, I focused on performance and functionality, which I consider my specialisation. I've also had the chance to work with stress testing processes a lot.'
What's your strategy for estimating projects?
Interviewers may ask this question to see if you have the required knowledge to perform well in the role you're applying for. While estimating a project, you use your best judgement and apply your organisational, analytical and often also teamwork skills. In your answer, be sure to briefly talk the interviewer through the process. You can also provide reasoning for each step.
Example: 'At first, I make sure to analyse the project and map it out in a visual form to divide it into smaller chunks. That way, I know what individual tasks we need to take care of, and this also allows me to allocate them to team members. Once testers have their tasks assigned, a group challenge is to estimate how much time and effort we need to dedicate to the project to complete it. Lastly, we validate the estimation.'
What can make a project fail?
Interviewers may want to ask questions that help them predict how you'd react in a situation when your project fails. The way you deal with failure can significantly influence the company's overall success. In your answer, be sure to give some examples of past projects and why they failed but consider keeping the rhetoric optimistic by providing an example solution. Assuring a potential employer that you're prepared for any issue and know how to deal with it can position you as an effective and highly qualified candidate.
Example: 'In my previous roles, I've encountered plenty of issues with testing projects. Many times the cause of those failures was limited budget or insufficient time to test software. Rarely has the testing environment been set up improperly, but that has also happened within my team. Luckily, the testing environment can be easily fixed by someone with excellent time-management and problem-solving skills.'
What do you consider your greatest weakness in software testing?
Understanding your flaws and knowing how to work on improving them shows that you're a self-aware candidate who's ambitious about your work and career. Interviewers may ask about weaknesses directly related to the role you're interviewing for because understanding them can help them better predict how much training and time you may need to adapt to the new work environment. In your answer, be sure to mention a weakness that's not essential to successfully completing software tests and show that you're ambitious about professional growth.
Example: 'I think that my greatest weakness is that I sometimes need more time to understand new software testing processes. It may take me a bit longer to implement them because I'm the type of person who likes to do further research at home to be sure I understand everything. Naturally, I've been working on improving this by making my research more strategic and organised because I strongly believe that once I've got this research method figured out, my co-workers and the company could also benefit from it, as it helps to predict more things.'
What information can be included in a test plan?
This is a question that tests your basic knowledge about best practices in software testing. Interviewers may ask this and observe your reaction. Be sure to analyse the question and formulate a concise but specific answer that would show them that you're an experienced and qualified candidate.
Example: 'The information I typically choose to include in the test plan depends on the type of test that the team is performing. However, the main elements of every plan are strategy, objectives and criteria. Based on the individual objectives for the test, I develop a strategy to reach those objectives. I also use the criteria to see how the software performs under different circumstances.'
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