Testing times at Ghost HQ

An industry shift towards quality assurance and testing is highlighted by a vacancy at Symantec NZ. The Auckland-based firm is looking for a manager of software quality assurance.

Title: Software quality assurance manager, Symantec NZ, Akld

Function: Design, development, implementation and review of test plans using range of technologies

Description: Leading a team of 10 analysts here and in US. Testing and releasing software and some after-sales customer care

Dosh: $80,000 to $120,000

An industry shift towards quality assurance and testing is highlighted by a vacancy at Symantec NZ. The Auckland-based firm is looking for a manager of software quality assurance.

HR manager Joy Paxton says the vacancy follows expansion and a promotion within its testing department. “When Symantec started in New Zealand three years ago, there was no testing team. Developers were relied upon to test products and debug. In three years, we have developed some sophisticated test systems, processes and models. We are going to have a ratio of one quality engineer/analyst to each developer,” she says.

Symantec NZ, formerly Binary Research, employs 36 staff and is the US software firm’s only development centre outside the US. It makes internet security products and Auckland is the R&D centre for its Ghost cloning software.

Paxton says testing is a key role and experienced software testers are hard to find. The firm is prepared to search globally to fill this vacancy and will help with immigration issues and relocation costs if necessary. The job involves leading a team of 10 analysts and engineers. Most are in Auckland, but a few are in Oregon in the US, so some overseas travel is required. The post has responsibility for releasing software and using a wide range of technologies, with a key role of designing, developing, implementing and reviewing test plans. There is no budget to manage.

Paxton says the right person needs to have led a software team before and possibly have a programming background.

“They would be familiar with software automation tools and software industry QA processes, methodologies etc, and come from a leading edge environment where there is a real emphasis on speed and quality.” Computer science qualifications are expected.

Communication skills are essential for talking across departments and after-sales work. “The key is managing the teams. To do that with credibility, you need the industry experience and be familiar with the processes of the software life cycle,” says Paxton.

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