We The People | Marcia Tiemi Matsumoto

Happy Friday, everyone! It's been another eventful week for us here at Fidel HQ. We've released our new Dashboard this week, and Katherine wrote all about it! She talked all about our reasons for creating a new dashboard, the process we used, and some of the new features we've added. Feel free to sign up at dashboard.fidel.uk if you haven't already, and you'll get to see the awesome new onboarding we've baked into it!

I thought it was fitting this week to chat with someone who's been spending a lot of quality time with our new Dashboard. I've sat down with one of our Quality Engineers (see what I did there? quality time - quality engineer), Marcia. I've asked Marcia a set of seven questions, trying to get to know her a little better. So join me on this quest!

A: Tell me a bit about yourself.

My name is Marcia Tiemi Matsumoto, and I’m a QA engineer here at Fidel. As my name might indicate, I’m of Japanese descent, born and raised in Brazil, and I currently live in Lisbon. The tricky part is… IT was never my first career choice. I have a degree in Journalism and worked as a journalist, writing about technology. But then, I had the unique opportunity to code in an extracurricular class in university and dropped all to join IT. My main fear has always been my lack of practice with maths, but that wasn’t that much of a challenge. Being the only woman to get a CS degree in my year was scarier.

A: Why did you join Fidel?

Marcia: Well, the pandemic happened. I got to Lisbon mid-November 2019, and by March, the company I worked for laid me off. I was already looking for new opportunities, but mainly, looking for a company in which I could participate more in its culture, and decision making. Technology-wise, I was also looking for something besides what I have always worked with. So when I saw a QA Engineer position, I sent my CV without really thinking about it. It pushed me to study Cypress for tests - which I had never used before. And also, talking to so many people from Fidel - Usha, David, Beatriz, Andre - helped me reach my final decision to join.

A: What’s the tech stack you currently use?

Marcia: We use a lot of JavaScript and TypeScript. For both UI and API testing, we use Cypress as a testing tool. While using Cypress, we also have some private methods created for internal use, and those use both JavaScript and TypeScript. Some service tests use Jest, but we rarely have to update those. Also, we test all features manually and use DynamoDB for checking results and data. Postman is also essential for our API testing. For the QA team, I feel that we are very open to changes and can suggest new tools if needed. At this point, we are also considering updating our tests to use Cucumber.

Recently, we’ve started implementing visual regression testing for every PR created by the front-end team. For that, we’re using Browserstack and Percy integrated with Cypress. This new test suite will help with minor UI changes that are constantly happening for the release of our brand new Dashboard.

A: What is your favourite thing about working at Fidel?

Marcia: I started at Fidel during the pandemic, and I haven’t had the chance to meet the team in person. But there is a lot of chit chat during the day and tons of GIFs in every channel. There is always someone checking in on us to see if we are okay, both physically and mentally, which should be an example for every company. I love the fact that I can make suggestions in every meeting and research them to see if it is worth a try. Everyone is helping each other and also teaching each other whenever necessary.

A: What are some of the most interesting technical challenges you’re solving?

Marcia: It is the first time that I had the opportunity to work in something from the very beginning. In other companies, I was responsible for maintaining and adding new tests for automation that already existed. But at Fidel, I get the opportunity to work on something new very often. Recently, I implemented reporting, and notifications for our test runs. It was great fun (very challenging) because both use tech that I had never used before. Also, visual regression testing is something new that I have the opportunity to experience as part of the QA team.

A: How do you keep up with current trends and advances in software development?

Marcia: Mostly newsletters, either related to QA or Software development. Also, I do follow some QA professionals:

  • Julio Lima - does a lot of updates about API testing and getting to know the basics of testing,
  • @actionqa - talks about QA, methodology, environment, resources and fix it situations,
  • Angie Jones - I learned most of my Java through her Java course, and she is constantly speaking about testing and working experiences.

I also try to check on those annual reports - like the State of Testing by PractiTest. I have a list of trends or tech that I follow and try to get updates to see if they are still worth. Weekly QA meetings here at Fidel are also great for tech updating and checking what others are studying. I’m also part of a Whatsapp group with past coworkers in which we talk about software development and QA.

A: Any tips for people that want to join you at Fidel?

Marcia: Know your basics about Fidel, which can help during the interview process. We do have a lot of documentation for our API and uses. Ask the interviewer about what we believe is the ideal work environment and our culture. We work with JavaScript and AWS, if you like both tech stacks, consider it as an added bonus. We are a small team, but we have the very best “work from home” environment, including gaming time and a happy hour.