How FDM Leeds launched our careers in Software Testing

Paul Brown
26.02.2019 Published: 26.02.19, Modified: 26.02.2019 16:02:09

Starting out with FDM Leeds as a Software Testing Trainer back in 2015, Gangotri Bhatt has represented FDM at many universities, schools and events including Women in IT, Women in STEM, Digital Festival and Girls in STEM. Speaking to her Software Testing team, Gangotri has pieced together a blog highlighting the perks of being a trainer at FDM and what the future holds for technology.

I thoroughly enjoy my role because I work for a company that believes in diversity and supports women in IT. Software testing is all about supplying information to business stakeholders so they can make an informed decision about the risks associated with a piece of software. Through executing tests and proving that functionality works as expected, we can decrease the level of risk. Testers aim to drive quality into all aspects of the software development lifecycle.


As a testing trainer, I have a deep understanding of a variety of topics so I can support trainees throughout their entire time in the academy. My knowledge covers areas such as Professional Skills, UNIX, ISTQB certified tester foundation level certification, manual testing, core Java, Selenium WebDriver and Cucumber. I really enjoy the ISTQB week as it is the first week in the software testing training and I can cover theory as well as sharing my experiences and examples in this industry. I also enjoy the test automation modules as I have a passion for new technology and tools that can benefit me in my day to day role, as well as improving my knowledge and practice of the topic.

Since becoming the Software Testing Course Owner 11 months ago, I have attended various testing events. FDM hosts various events throughout the year such as open evenings for graduates and testing specific events for potential candidates where they get to compete as teams in a “Bug Bash” to see who can find the most defects within an application. FDM also sponsor the Ministry of Testing events throughout the year, which are open for everyone to attend and we get to meet people with a similar mindset from different companies.

As a trainer, I find it rewarding to see my trainees doing so well on client-site as a consultant. I recently heard some interesting stories from two of my trainees who are from a non-technical background and are now successful software testers:

The journey of Georgina Edkins:

Upon starting at FDM, I was on the Business Analyst stream as a recent Criminology graduate who had done a small amount of data analysis within my degree, but nowhere near enough to think I could have a future career in IT. The first few weeks in the academy focus on ensuring everyone in the training group is up to a similar standard, in terms of professionalism, Excel and SQL – this is where I started to consider challenging myself with a more technical career path. I really enjoyed problem-solving and querying data during the week of SQL training; it was something I took to better than I would have thought.

Having finished these introduction weeks in the academy, there is further discussion surrounding your current stream and any support you may need. There is also an opportunity to re-meet the Account Manager. It was during this time when I asked about moving onto the Software Testing stream. All the questions I had about the relevant training and a future career in software testing were answered in a one-to-one meeting with the head of the software testing stream and I transitioned over.

My new trainer Gangotri helped me to get stuck straight in with training and I was able to get ISTQB certified as well as learning testing processes and some automation testing. The training was filled with projects, so not only did I learn the theory of the role but I also got to put it into practice.

Before I completed the stream I had the chance to interview for a Test Analyst position at Virgin Money Giving in Norwich. I had the interview one day and the next I found out I had secured the position and would be moving there for two years.

Thankfully, I have a great support system around me which made the move a lot easier than I expected. My dad drove my boyfriend and me down to our new flat in Norwich, ready for me to start my new job three days later.

A year and a half down the line and I am currently the only full-time Software Tester in my team. I have great colleagues who have taught me a lot and who I am still in touch with even now they have left. My team is very supportive and great at their jobs which really helps when testing their codes. I am currently learning more advanced test automation, and my boss here allows me to set aside time for extra learning when I need to – so I’m never sat with nothing to do!

Everything about joining FDM was a bit of a shot in the dark for me, being very risk-adverse (great for testing), but it has helped me to outline a path for my future which I was previously unsure about.

The journey of Tara Bahadur Gurung (Ex-Forces) 

I consider myself lucky to have an opportunity to sail on a smooth journey from the end of my Army career into the world of IT. Training and guidance from the staff at FDM are of the highest standards and the support from the ex-military team is second to none. It is my biggest achievement to have left the army and seamlessly secured roles with technically prolific. These companies aspire to thrive each day and greatly invest in new technologies. Concurrently, working for them allows me to progress in my job technically and in various other ways. I am very grateful for the kick-start.

Explore a career in IT and Software Testing, visit our Graduate Careers page.


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