Anna dreamed of a job at a big tech company and pursued her goal tenaciously, landing her job a year and a half ago. She shares her life-changing story and tells us how patience, persistence, and curiosity helped her along the way.
Tell us a bit about the start of your journey. When did you finish your course?
I used to work in clerical positions and had no technical background at all. At some point, I decided I didn’t feel like doing that job for my whole life and started searching for an alternative. I came across the Manual QA course, and I must admit joining the Careerist course was definitely one of the best decisions of my life. I graduated in January 2021, which was right in the middle of the pandemic.
At first, I had a kind of blurred picture of myself in tech. I had no idea how I could get into it because, for me, tech was working somewhere like Amazon, Facebook, or any other FAANG company. Anyway, I’ve made my own way to tech.
We are happy you managed to make it. Where are you located?
When I was in the course, I was in California, but now I’m in southern Florida.
Do you remember your job search? How did it go?
I started my job search in Florida, and it took me two-and-a-half months of crazy applying, like 30 or 40 positions a day. Indeed, some days were really good, and I applied for 40 positions, while others were slow, and I couldn’t find anything. I also tried to use JAS (Job Application Service) to increase the number of applications. Still, I ended up applying myself because I could monitor the situation better, and it made me feel more confident.
How many interviews did you have?
I had just under ten interviews with different companies. Within each company, I usually had two interviews: one with HR and one with a technical recruiter, manager, or QA team lead.
Were there any commonalities among all the interviews?
I would say 99% of questions were from the packet, although sometimes worded differently. One common question was, “How would you test a ?” The main point here is to develop test cases as quickly as possible.
So how much time did it take you to find a job?
In two and a half months, I found my first job. Even my mentor was shocked because I probably found the cheapest job in QA. It was $20 per hour, a contract for a low-cost airline. The job was super simple; it was in Florida and had a hybrid schedule with one day per week onsite.
I didn’t like it because of the pay, which pushed me to keep searching. The job was simple, but I strongly felt I could make more. And after one more month, I got another offer—where I’m still working. So I’m a full-time employee, and my salary is like $80,000 per year, which is pretty good. Now I work for a company that positions itself as a Microsoft Gold partner.
That is truly amazing. How does it feel working there?
It’s like a whole different world, and I’ve had to learn a lot. We work on Microsoft platforms, and there isn’t much actual testing. One of our Careerist trainers, Lana, once mentioned she keeps undergoing interviews from time to time, just for fun, so it inspired me to keep searching.
Yes, it is very beneficial. You do not have to be scared of interviews, questions, or rejections. Anything interesting so far?
I recently got an offer. It was a $45 per hour contract, but at that time, it didn’t work for me.
And at your job right now, is the title anything related to QA?
Yes, they want me to be a functional consultant, work face-to-face with clients, and ensure they get the best experience. Honestly, I’m not interested, but it’s beneficial for my LinkedIn profile and my resume in general. Moreover, it’s an awesome opportunity to learn something new.
We are happy to hear you earned this tech position. So what are you planning to do next?
I want to develop more in a technical field, learn to use innovative tools, and study API and SQL because they came up a lot during my interviews. I didn’t get it until the end, and there was a part where I stuck to the paper and just answered everything in it.
Is this job also hybrid? What is your working model now?
The job is 100% remote, and I’m happy about that. I can choose my path and pick my working hours. My team is on the West Coast, and I can maintain my own working hours. Flexibility makes me very happy. Thanks for making me happy.
It is always great to see how people from different backgrounds—doctors, professors, musicians, teachers, and people from any possible field—successfully change their lifestyles by switching careers. It is wonderful to feel their happiness in these heartfelt success stories. Thanks for sharing your story, motivating others to keep pursuing their goals, and not being afraid of anything.