This month’s Resolverite Spotlight is Dale Alano! Resolver’s Talent Specialist, Victoria Pearson sat down with Dale, a Quality Engineer based in our Edmonton office to learn more about his role and what his day-to-day is like at Resolver.
Victoria: Tell us about your Resolver journey!
Dale: I took computer systems technology at NAIT, and after I completed that program, I applied for the Customer Support Analyst position at PPM 2000 (now Resolver). That’s how it all started!
Victoria: How soon after you became a Support Analyst did you start to progress here?
Dale: During the course of my first year here, there was a Quality Engineering/Support rotation program which is how I got a sense of what it was like in QE. Shortly after the rotation program ended, there was an open position for the QE team which I was eligible to apply to and ultimately got hired for because of my experience with the company.
Victoria: Now that you’re in a management position here, you have a number of people that report into you. Tell me a bit about that transition – how did what you were doing here at Resolver help to direct you down that path?
Dale: It’s actually interesting. Because going back to it – I started in Support, and in that position, I learned a lot about how our customers use our applications. A lot of it was more customer facing, which in my transition to QE allowed me to combine my exposure with how customers used our applications and my technical background (what I learned in school) in my testing efforts. Moving from there, I worked my way into the Quality Engineering Lead position. In this role, a lot of my focus is helping the team This position is not about myself and my personal tasks, but more about supporting my team to be effective, and enabling them so that they can progress.
Victoria: What is your day-to-day like?
Dale: It’s quite busy! I’m usually working on multiple projects spread across our various products. Aside from my tasks and coaching my team, I also help the support team in some cases investigating bugs. Part of my responsibilities is also automation.
Victoria: I’m interested to know more about what you’re doing with automation.
Dale: To answer this question simply, the majority of the work that we do in automation involves the selection of test cases that we believe would most benefit our team. Then we develop an automated test case for it. Automation is really a constant effort of performing investigations of our automation runs and the maintenance of our existing frameworks, performance, and load testing.
Victoria: What do you love the most about your role?
Dale: There’s a lot of variation in what I do. Multi-tasking is not something everyone loves, but I really enjoy it. I love shifting gears from one thing to another because I find that it really challenges me. Every day is something new!
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Victoria: What do you think you’re most challenged by in your role?
Dale: Currently it’s learning about managing people to help them grow in their roles. I’m new to the lead position, so I’m working with my manager and our team to ensure that everyone feels supported and empowered.
Victoria: What is something that you’ve learned so far in your new role that you didn’t know before you started to manage a team?
Dale: There’s always a bigger picture [laughs]. Working as a Quality Engineer you’re so focused on the tasks that are currently on your plate. Moving towards the lead position, you have to all of a sudden look beyond those little tasks. It’s not always going to be about what you’re doing anymore, it’s about what you want to achieve as a team and how you get there together.
Victoria: If you were to give someone who was interested in a career in Quality Engineering at Resolver – what would you tell them?
Dale: I would say that you need a mixture of technical skill in preparation for the job itself. Also, you’ll have to learn a lot about our applications and how they’re used by our customers in order to be a really good software tester. A very keen eye and a knack for problem-solving will help as well. Attention to detail with a testing role is extremely important.
Victoria: Talk to me about your work-life balance. What do you personally do to unwind or reset after a tough day?
Dale: It’s a balance of spending time at the gym to relieve some stress, but also spending time with family, and of course a bit of Netflix binge-watching and video games!
Victoria: What’s next for you in your role?
Dale: There is still a lot of room to learn and grow within my current position! I want to continue to expand my skill set in managing and growing a team. At the same time, I still love being hands-on with the things that I’m doing so I don’t want to totally lose that exposure.
Victoria: What did you want to be when you were growing up?
Dale: I actually wanted to be a game developer.
Victoria: That’s not super far off from the path you took!
Dale: It’s pretty close! But as I grew up I realized that developing games requires a different set of creative skills that hasn’t really been my best interest and completely ruins the gaming experience for me compared to the fun of just playing them.
Victoria: So, I’m assuming you’re still a gamer – what games do you play?
Dale: DOTA (Defense of the Ancients). It’s a multiplayer online battle arena game. And other old-school role-playing games.