August 2, 2018

Bottle Rocket’s 3rd Annual QA Bootcamp Recap

Another year, another successful Bottle Rocket Quality Assurance Boot Camp!

Every year, the QA team puts on an informative and interactive event for testers outside of the company. Interested participants come from all over DFW to learn about a variety of topics covering the test approach to mobile and connected devices. This gives people outside of the mobile space a chance to get more exposure to the mobile world as well as how Bottle Rocket’s QA team works – and this particular boot camp was our most successful yet.

In 2017, the QA Bootcamp was a half day affair with about 20 participants.

In 2018, a full day was needed to cover all of the topics given and the audience grew to 25.

But that’s not the only thing that changed – this year, the boot camp had its first ever sponsor. It was so great to be supported by Beacon Hill Staffing Group. As a neighbor in our building, they have seen the boot camps of previous years and wanted to be a part of this year’s fun. Thank you so much for your support!

What Happened at our QA Bootcamp?

Our speakers went over the following areas of interest:

  • Bottle Rocket’s general test approach as it pertains to mobile and connected devices
  • A detailed overview of mobile automation
  • Our preferred testing tools
  • Different mobile platforms
  • Advanced testing types such as performance, security, and load testing

The topics covered were similar to last year’s agenda, but the added time allowed the speakers to go more in depth. A full day event gave them an opportunity to kick up their presentations to the next level. Instead of giving an overview of each idea, they were able to go into more technical details, which gave the attendees a clearer picture of what it would be like to work with these tools and processes. One of the attendees said the experience was “very enriching” and that it “enabled [them] to gain insights and understanding of the concepts of mobile”.

But it wasn’t all lectures – there was also an introduction by our Director of Quality Assurance, awesome guest speakers from our User Experience and Engineering departments, a tour of our quirky space-obsessed office, a fantastic Q&A, and the delicious lunch provided by Beacon Hill Staffing Group.

Why Do We Host Bootcamps?

This type of event is not only a benefit to the participants but also to our QA team and department as a whole. As the saying goes, the best way to learn something is to teach. We believe in giving our team members the opportunity to share what they’ve learned whenever possible because this helps the people they share it with as well as strengthening their own proficiency in the subject. The QA Boot Camp is a great way to do this.

One of our new presenters this year, Jyoti Pothukuchi, commented that “sessions like this help us share our expertise and experience with the testing community” as well as “helping us improve based on the feedback”. Another presenter, AJ Mejorado, called out that the audience “had a series of really great questions during the Q&A panel” and that this gives us “an updated perspective on how many individuals in the area are really interested in not only QA but also in increasing their knowledge and skillset”.

In the end, connecting with people who share our passion for quality is what keeps us working hard on this event every year. The increase in attendees this year really boosted the amount of feedback and questions we received, so thank you so much if you were able to come and participate!

If this year’s growth is any indication, you won’t want to miss next year’s boot camp. Look out for the LinkedIn post for more details.

October 18, 2017

Bottle Rocket Hosts Second Annual QA Bootcamp

Each year, Bottle Rocket hosts a Quality Assurance (QA) Bootcamp, a half-day event covering mobile and connected device application testing. The bootcamp is a chance for testers in other industries to get exposure to the mobile application testing space.

Our agenda for the day included various mobile-specific topics:

  • QA Automation
  • Augmented reality, virtual reality, and mixed reality
  • A tour of our office (including the new automation lab and AR/VR lab)
  • Tools
  • Know your platform
  • TV Everywhere

Last year, all speakers were from Bottle Rocket’s QA team, but this year we decided that having input from Rocketeers of other disciplines would add to the experience. So, we invited department leads from engineering and experience design (XD) to give their perspective. Development leads focused on upcoming iOS/Android developments along with the collaboration of the engineering and QA teams working together. Our head of experience design reiterated the value of having QA's input in XD and involvement throughout all phases of the project. The outcome of those discussions allowed participants to get a glimpse of working in a collaborative environment with multiple disciplines and what to look for in future announcements.

Having other departments involved, in a way, also replicates our working model in the office - all disciplines are integrated. Other companies are known for the separation of QA from the rest of the development team, but here at Bottle Rocket, we believe that all disciplines should work together in close proximity to create a quality product. The speakers helped show that our culture can truly increase productivity and especially that there is value in including QA from the beginning of the project, throughout its development, and upon release. Our working model and their obvious respect for our team seemed to leave a positive impact on the attendees.

The idea was to open up a broad discussion that isn’t necessarily QA-centric; for example, AR and VR is something that impacts many fields and is on the rise. Sharing our current work in this area with exciting platforms was a fun way to elicit the engagement of the participants. Mobile automation is always a popular topic – it’s becoming integral to technology as a whole. We hope participants were inspired and ready to explore the mobile automation world within their own companies.

One of the highlights of the bootcamp was the quality of participants attending the event. Their questions allowed us to dive deeper into the material and to gain a better understanding of where interest lies for future bootcamps. Having the right group of participants makes all the difference in the impact of an event like this. The talent in the room and their inquisitive minds allowed for its success.

Part of our own success story includes the way we work (which correlates to our level of productivity), and what better way to give a glimpse of that to our participants than touring our office space? Stops on the tour included the VR lab, the QA device and automation labs, and examples of our lo-fi to hi-fi whiteboard approach throughout the work areas.

We could have spent years planning and perfecting a bootcamp agenda and presentations, but without an interested and eager audience, it wouldn’t have amounted to much in the end. We owe the success of this year’s event to the questions and passion of the attendees. The positive and insightful feedback is what keeps us going and strengthens our desire to share our knowledge with the community. It makes all the work worth it when we receive feedback like:

“Well Organized”
“Great work environment and great team”
“Very informative & helpful”

Seeing what participants were interested in hearing more about has inspired new focuses for the next bootcamp — there will be many more events like this coming from the Bottle Rocket QA team!

Interested in working with our QA team for your brand experience? Let us know at [email protected]

June 24, 2016

Bottle Rocket Hosts First Ever QA Bootcamp

Recently, Bottle Rocket’s QA team held a half-day QA bootcamp on the subject of mobile application testing. The event equipped the eager non-mobile QA community of all skill ranges with the latest trends in mobile-centric testing and assisted with their QA professional development.

Sandeepa Vemireddy, organizer and QA director, explained that this boot camp focused highly on what attendees wanted to hear and learn. The content was planned around different levels of experience so that all groups had something to discover. Newbies and seasoned professionals looking to get into QA along with veterans seeking to know more about automation and server testing gathered to learn about the following (and more):

  • Bottle Rocket’s QA culture
  • The basics of mobile test approach
  • Bottle Rocket’s automation and tool knowledge
  • Server testing and test approach style
  • Evolving and trending technologies

Throughout the day, participants gained in-depth knowledge on upcoming mobile trends and working in agile workflows. They also learned a great deal about working in parallel with other team members during development, as well as how to approach QA with little to no business requirements.

Whiteboard drawing for QA Bootcamp

“It was a great experience for the presenters and the participants,” said Rocketeer Philip Hake. “[People] very much enjoyed the content and presentations…[and] really liked how our disciplines all sat and worked together with open communication. We [hope to take] the presentation on tour to colleges [and other future events].”

We’re excited to host a one-of-a-kind experience for the community. If you’re interested in other Bottle Rocket boot camps or similar STEAM events, feel free to contact our team of Rocketeers.

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