Survival techniques for testers, beyond the T-shape tester

Tuesday 3 November Jan Jaap Cannegieter and I gave a tutorial workshop at the EuroSTAR conference. In this wisdom of the crowd session we searched for and defined our future. Main question throughout the workshop was:

How do we survive as a tester and what skills and knowledge de we need to develop.

We used the T-shaped tester (Rob Lambert, Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory) that combines need for general knowledge with advanced test skills to be successful. But we thought it was time to expand the model. Therefore we introduced the π-shaped professional. Theπ-shaped tester extends his global knowledge (development, project management, agile etc.) and test expertise with yet another specialism to stay in demand, e.g. security, test automation, requirements.

In the workshop we did a brainstorm what other specialism will be in future demand. Jan Jaap and I were astonished by the fast amount of suggestions provided by the group. See the both flip overs they covered below:

Specialisms for testers 1 Specialisms for testers 2

In the second part of the workshop we did dot-voting (see the previous pictures) to invest how popular the various specialisms were. The most popular were taking as a starting point for a further investigation. Below you’ll find the skills for each leg of the π as determined by the participants.

Note: I think it is interesting is to see what the teams filled in for the other two legs as well. The generic skills and testing skills they come up with variate with each of the specialisms.


IMG_1967 IMG_1968 IMG_1969

Test Automation

IMG_1958 IMG_1959 IMG_1960

Business Analyst

IMG_1961 IMG_1962 IMG_1963


IMG_1964 IMG_1965 IMG_1966




IMG_1972 IMG_1971

Non Functional testing (Security, Performance, UX)

IMG_1957 IMG_1956

About derkjandegrood

Derk-Jan de Grood, works for Squerist as senior test consultant and agile advisor. As Trainer, Consultant and Agile Coach, he is involved with improvements and agile implementations. Derk-Jan is the author of several successful books including TestGoal, Grip on IT and the Dutch Testers association’s jubilee book on future trends in testing. In 2016 he published “Agile in the Real World”, a book on SCRUM. Derk-Jan won several awards including the prestigious European Testing Excellence Award in 2014
This entry was posted in Conferences, EuroSTAR, Getting more out of..., Slides, Testing, Training and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Survival techniques for testers, beyond the T-shape tester

  1. Pingback: Survival techniques for testers, beyond the T-shape tester (part 2) | Derk-Jan de Grood

  2. Pingback: EuroSTAR webinar: T-shape and π-shaped testers | Derk-Jan de Grood

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