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Success Story: Mariia

June 1, 2021

We recently got in touch with one of our 2019 graduates Mariia, and today we’ll share her success story with you. Interestingly, Mariia found her QA job during the pandemic, so perhaps she can inspire you to see that there are good jobs available during these uncertain times. 

Could you tell us a bit about yourself and your background?

I wasn’t a Developer or an Engineer before I started my QA career. In fact, I came from a customer service background. 

I did a coding Bootcamp for 6 months and after that I joined Careerist. The Manual QA course at Careerist was interesting and just what I was looking for.

How long did it take you to find a job after graduating?

I took a November class, but I didn’t start applying for jobs until February. 

I decided to give myself some more time to go through the course material, so I was extra familiar with it all, before applying for jobs. The instructors at Careerist give you a lot of information which is great! 

Once I started applying for jobs it only took me five weeks to get a contract. 

There were a lot of delays due to the coronavirus, and a lot of rescheduling had to be done as many businesses were starting to work remotely. But I got there in the end.

What was your job search like?

I started my initial job search in the first week of February 2020, and in the middle of March I got an offer. I accepted this offer immediately. 

I started my job search right in the middle of the pandemic, which did mean that there were delays, but I did manage to get thirty interviews for myself. I had multiple interviews in San Francisco too. 

My initial goal was to apply for a minimum of ten jobs per day. And I applied through LinkedIn, Indeed, Dice, Glassdoor, and Monster. LinkedIn was the best in my opinion.

I received one offer, but it was the right one for me. More than I could’ve wished for.

Honestly, right up until the day I got my job, I would watch all the videos from the course and I’d go through all the interview questions until I felt confident that I knew what I was talking about. Every single day I read the same questions over and over again in case I got called to an interview that day. By the end I knew most of the questions on the list off by heart! 

I also attended the Careerist internship for two weeks, and this was very helpful. I found it very useful because the more you practice the more you get acquainted with the tasks of a tester, and the more confident you become.

We recommend that our students use LinkedIn and Glassdoor when looking for jobs, and other sites are good for sharing resumes on.

What were the main questions that you were asked in your interviews?

The top three questions I had were:

  • ‘Tell me about yourself.’
  • ‘What is in a test case?’
  • ‘How would you create a Jira bug ticket?’

Overall the questions weren’t complicated, and I wasn’t asked how to create a log file or anything. Only on one occasion was I asked about ADB Unix commands.

I was prepared for the interviews. I used Careerist's question database to prepare, and I took note of any questions that instructors mentioned during lessons. I mean, the instructors were always highlighting what we should focus on and I tried to remember these key moments.

Tell us more about your job offer and the interview for this job...

I’m currently working full time for a really big company in San Francisco. 

At the moment I’m working remotely due to the pandemic. The company sent me out a laptop so I work on it instead.

The initial interview for the job I’m in right now was with a recruiter. I had a second interview with the hiring manager, and after that I went to an on-site interview. When I was on-site they asked me what kind of salary I was looking for, I told them my minimum expectation was $95,000 a year.

The day after the on-site interview I was called on Zoom, and they offered me a job with access to full employee benefits and a salary of $120,000 a year. 

They told me to wait for a confirmation email. When I got the confirmation email I saw that the yearly salary was actually going to be $130,000 a year, instead of the earlier $120,000 a year, and I’d also get access to a maximum package of $200,000 a year. 

The recruiter explained that I answered all the questions throughout the interview process confidently, and they felt that I was the most competent candidate out of all the candidates that were interviewed. 

I believe that being prepared for the interviews, as well as having confidence on the day, were crucial to my success. I would advise students to prepare themselves for interviews, and to try and be as confident as possible during interviews.  

We have thoroughly enjoyed sharing Mariia’s story with you, our students and our readers. We hope that we have shown you all that finding a job is absolutely possible during the COVID-19 pandemic! And you can certainly find a high-paying job where you can earn a salary of up to $200,000 a year. 

Welcome to the IT world Mariia!


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