One year ago there was no company, no office, no product. Today our one year old start-up has got international setup, we have got our very first product (https://newired.com/), and next month we have to move to new office in Ostrava since we outgrew our beloved Impact Hub Ostrava. We are currently 10 people in Ostrava, 21 in total and growing. Would you like to meet the team? Let me introduce the very first team member who was also the very first one I interviewed with year ago – please welcome, Vojta, our QA & Scrum Master!
Q1: Vojto, can you please say few words about you?
Hi, I have been in the area of Quality Assurance for 10 years now. My motto is “Quality as satisfaction of all stakeholders” when everybody needs to be involved and aligned about this goal. My mission is to spread this attitude to made everybody passion about the quality and actually to enjoy it.
I have been in many different roles like QA, Tester, Lead of QA Department, Business Analyst, Mentor, Trainer, etc.
I have three lovely kids – two boys (8, 6) and one girl (3). I am very active person having a lot of hobbies when the biggest one is photography, specially covering any kind of sports.
Q2: Why did you decide to leave stable corporate environment and join start-up company?
I started in Tieto 10 years ago and I would say it was already big corporation these times. Which was great, because I was newbie and corporations have usually good processes for onboarding, trainings, etc. I am very thankful for all of the knowledge and experience I got there.
After five years in Tieto I moved to Jetminds. It was small company full of freedom and self responsibility. Totally different area and approaches. I loved that. Then Jetminds was growing, it became Vendavo and slowly changing to be a small corporation with all its pros and cons. After another several great years in Vendavo I felt need for change again. I desired collocated team passionate about the product having its quality as the first goal.
Q3: Why Newired?
Then I heard about Newired. Startup starting in CZ with investors from CZ and Italy. Moreover RainFellows were involved in it so it got my attention. I was really not sure if I would like to do such big change.
That is why I decided to start by smaller steps and we agreed about partial mentoring in Newired as contractor. I understood plans, company spirit and vision. Mentoring became more and more intensive and few months ago I decided for the final step and become full time employee in the role of QA Manager and Scrum Master.
“Quality first” is the real goal in Newired and that was the main game changer for me. Usually it is some kind of cliche but after year of close cooperation I see it is really the whole company attitude – from Devs to Investors – and that was always my dream job… No excuses… Just do it!
The second reason was the fact we were able to deliver the first working version in less than year which is not usual in the area of startups. Team in Ostrava is were strong and cooperation with Italy is smooth and everybody ideas are welcomed. The product is our baby.
Q4: What QA means to you?
Quality Assurance is about satisfaction. Satisfaction of customers, investors, but also dev team. In other words I would like to enjoy my work when the biggest motivation is to see that what we deliver actually brings real value to customers and I can be proud about the product and my contribution to it.
Quality Assurance is far more than only testing. The main goal is to prevent defects. However, testing is an important piece of the puzzle. Important is the balance between structured and unstructured testing when effective test automation is the key to success.
Q5: How do we implement it at Newired?
We have a team where everybody wants to contribute and we are all aligned about the mission to deliver high quality solution. This attitude is half of the win. The second half is to find the way how to achieve it. We decided to start from basics
- Small iterations
- Proofs of concepts
- Definition of Ready and Done
- Close cooperation of all roles
- Proper business analysis
We have a benefit of small collocated team when everything is easier and we can solve most of the things around the whiteboard. That is another big benefit.
However, we are aware of the risk of lack of documentation, no rules, etc. That is why we build simple Kanban board to track our activities and requirements are maintained as User Stories, sketches, etc.
Process is light but strict including code reviews, internal demos, testing, etc. The most important is continuous improvements – if the process we all agreed to follow does not work we have to change it. Regular retrospectives are part of the process, but there is no need to wait until the next one. Atmosphere is open so we continuously tune the way we work.
Q6: Any hint to those who think about the same career change but still hesitate?
Think about pros and cons. If you are QA, we are good in “What if analysis”. Utilize such approach when taking any important decision in your live.
- What could happen if I decide to go for a change – Think about different options, how will you feel, what will be consequences, how to lower risks, etc.
- In other hand think also what will happen if you decide to keep the current position, approach, status, etc. Think about few months, year, sometimes even longer vision is needed
- What can go wrong, what can go well…
- Our choices needs to be based on both, feelings and reasoning. I believe such approach will help you to do the right choice
The most important aspect of the job for me is I have to enjoy it. We spend ¼ of our life at work – that is too much time to do something that does not make me happy and satisfied.
Do you want to meet us in person? Drop me a message (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we can have coffee at our office in Ostrava.