A further response to the debate on here https://www.linkedin.com/groups/690977/690977-6145951933501882370?trk=hp-feed-group-discussion. I couldn’t fit it in a comment so put it here instead.
Hi Alan. Thanks – I’m not sure we are disagreeing, I think we’re debating from different perspectives, that’s all.
Your suggestion that other members of our software teams might need to re-skill or up-skill isn’t so far-fetched. This kind of re-assignment and re-skilling happens all the time. If a company needs you to reskill because they’ve in/out/right-sourced, or merged with another company, acquired a company or been acquired – then so be it. You can argue from principle or preference, but your employer is likely to say comply or get another job. That’s employment for you. Sometimes it sucks. (That’s one reason I haven’t had a permanent job since 1984).
My different perspective? Well i’m abolutely not arguing from the high altar of thought-leadership, demagoguery or dictatorship. Others can do that and you know where they can stick their edicts.
Almost all the folk I meet in the testing services business are saying Digital is dominating the market right now. Most organisations are still learning how to do this and seek assistance from wherever they can get it. Services business may be winging it but eventually the dust will settle, they and their clients will know what they are doing. The job market will re-align to satisfy this demand for skills. It was the same story with client/server, internet, Agile, mobile and every new approach – whatever. It’s always the same with hype – some of it becomes our reality.
(I’m actually on a train writing this – I’m on my way to meet a ‘Head of Digital’ who has a testing problem, or perhaps ‘a problem with our testers’. If I can, I’ll share my findings…)
Not every company adopts the latest craze, but many will. Agile (with a small a), continuous delivery, DevOps, containerisation, micro-services, shift-left, -right or whatever are flavour of the month (althoough agile IMHO has peaked). A part of this transition or transformation is a need for more technical testers – that’s all. The pressure to learn code is not coming from self-styled experts. It is coming from the job market which is changing rapidly. It is mandatory, only if you want to work in these or related environments.
The main argument for understanding code is not to write code. Code-comprehension, as i would call it, is helpful if your job is to collaborate more closely with developers using their language, that’s all.