The role of the testing manager is a vital role in the system development lifecycle. The testing manager works as a bridge between the software development team and senior staff within the business to ensure that the information system being developed is meeting the business needs and the documented specifications.
The testing manager is responsible for ensuring that planned and methodical testing of a system under development takes place. The testing manager will develop a number of test scripts that will thoroughly test all aspects of the system, to develop these scripts the testing manager utilises the documented specifications of the system. This plan will test to see how well the system meets the documented requirements and how well the functionality performs. As well as this the tests will also determine how well the system performs over a network and how well it performs with a number of people using the system at one time.
The testing manager also coordinates and manages a group of staff who perform the tests. Any errors or bugs that they may find are reported to the testing manager who reports these to the development team and the system owners to determine an order of priority for repair.
A testing manager exhibits a combination of capabilities from the Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA) and from the Queensland Public Service Leadership competencies for Queensland Framework.
Within the SFIA profile, the testing manager has level 4 and 5 capabilities, i.e. enables, ensures and advises on the skills outlined below.
Refer to the framework for descriptions of the seven levels of responsibility and accountability.
SFIA skill code
SFIA skill level of responsibility
SFIA skills level descriptor
Coordinates and manages planning of the system and/or acceptance tests, including software security testing, within a development or integration project or programme. Takes responsibility for integrity of testing and acceptance activities and coordinates the execution of these activities. Provides authoritative advice and guidance on any aspect of test planning and execution. Defines and communicates the test strategy for the project. Manages all test processes, including test plans, resources, costs, timescales, test deliverables and traceability. Manages client relationships with respect to testing matters. Identifies process improvements and contributes to corporate testing standards and definition of best practice.
Methods and tools
Provides advice and guidance to support adoption of methods and tools and adherence to policies and standards. Tailors processes in line with agreed standards and evaluation of methods and tools. Reviews and improves usage and application of methods and tools.
Queensland Government roles align with the Leadership competencies for Queensland.
Leadership competencies for Queensland describes what highly effective, everyday leadership looks like in the sector. In simple, action-oriented language, it provides a common understanding of the foundations for success across all roles. The profile describes three performance dimensions (vision, results and accountability) and 11 leadership competencies required against five leadership streams.
Leadership streams are not connected to a level or classification, but rather reflect the balance between leadership and technical skills required of an individual. Individuals can consider the ‘value proposition’ of roles rather than the traditional lens of hierarchical structures or classification levels. The five leadership streams are:
- Individual contributor (Leads self and does not supervise others)
- Team leader (leads a team and typically reports to a program leader)
- Program leader (leads team leaders and/or multiple areas of work)
- Executive (leads program leaders or other executives)
- Chief executive (leads the organisation).
When developing a role description, identify the role type and then focus on the most important attributes and create a balance between SFIA skills and leadership skills.
A degree level qualification in information technology or computer science are highly regarded in this field.
 The Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA) provides a common language that integrates with an organisation’s way of working, to improve capability and resource planning, resource deployment and performance management. This role profile quotes extensively from the SFIA, under licence from the SFIA Foundation. Information about the SFIA can be found at http://www.sfia-online.org/en
 The Leadership competencies for Queensland framework plays a key role in translating the government’s ‘talent management requirements’ into clear behavioural terms. The competencies can be utilised in talent management strategies, including workforce planning, talent acquisition, leadership development, capability development, performance management, career management and succession planning. The competences can be accessed here Leadership competencies for Queensland