by Le Ha
HA NOI — Since its first introduction in Viet Nam during 2005, software testing has become a hot profession, but both the number and quality of testers remain inadequate, according to Le Anh Tuan, project manager of SDT Software.
|Software programmers and testers at work in the Da Nang Software Park. The profession has been gaining popularity in recent years. — VNA/VNS Photo Van Son
Software testing provides stakeholders with information about the quality of products or services. Test techniques include the process of executing a programme or application with the intent of finding software errors or other defects.
Nguyen Thanh, software development manager at Viet Nam Social Media Company, said testers were very important to ensure the quality of software products.
According to Tuan, a tester earns between US$300 and $600 a month or even higher, which is better than the average labour market salary.
Pham Thi Quynh Vy, head of the FSoft Quality Management Board, speaking at a software testing conference in the Thang Long – Aptech Computer Education Centre in late March, said software testing was an interesting job, which provided the chance to join software outsourcing projects in foreign countries such as the US, Japan and Singapore.
She added that the profession has been largely dominated by women.
Having worked as a software tester for four years, Nguyen Thu Trang, head of quality assurance at Setacing Viet Nam, a software outsourcing company, said she liked her job.
"Software testing will develop in the next few years with information technology and software outsourcing becoming future trends," she added.
Viet Nam has continuously been recognised as one of the top destinations for software testing in the past four years, according to a Global Services Media report, published by India's Cybermedia for the global outsourcing of information technology services and BPO (business process outsourcing) industry.
Last year, Viet Nam ranked eighth in the list of A.T. Kearney's 2011 Global Services Location Index (GSLI) for developing software outsourcing. A.T. Kearney is a global management consulting firm, focusing on strategic and operational issues for the world's leading organisations across all major industries and sectors.
According to Denny Nguyen, director of Viet Nam LogiGear, an education unit focused on training software testing engineers, the number of software testers in the country has increased significantly from 6,000 in 2007 to 17,000 in 2011.
"However, the current software testers still struggle to satisfy demand," Nguyen said.
According to Nguyen, the ratio of software testers per software programmers in Viet Nam is only one-fifth, far lower than the global rate of one-third.
Viet Nam would lack about 10,000 testers in the next few years, given the country's dynamic growth in software programming, according to an international conference on automatic software testing held in HCM City last December.
The quality of Vietnamese software testers is another problem.
Testers working at software outsourcing companies for foreign-partners often have higher skills than those at smaller software businesses, given that they were trained professionally and practise at a global standard, Tuan added.
Pham Vo Tong, a developer at Setacing said, "The quality of some local software testers is good enough to compete with those from overseas software centres".
Tuan suggested the Government focus on training software testers at vocational schools or running short-term training courses.
Meanwhile, Trang said it was not necessary to set up separate software training courses at universities.
"Adding software testing modules to information technology courses will help students understand the job, ahead of gaining practice at software companies." — VNS