Interview with Thomas Haver

Welcome to the third interview from “Quality Talks with TLC Speakers” series. This time we have Thomas Haver with us. And I am sure you will enjoy this interview as much as I did. 

What made you choose “Effective Solutions for Enterprise Test Automation” for your tutorial in TLC? What can participants expect to learn from your tutorial? 

“I have solid working at multiple companies leading an enterprise-level effort in the automation space. My team has learned quite a bit through both successes and failures. We had to spread wide (73 applications) across the web, mobile, desktop, database, services, and mainframe. We’ve also had to deep dive into team processes and metrics to ensure the long-term viability of a program. Participants in my session can learn how to build an enterprise framework – both in terms of automation architecture as well as governance. Automation has become omnipresent in IT, however, most implementations focus on delivering for the next day. I plan to show how an individual can build momentum to keep a program strong for years to come.”

How different do you think the remote format of tutorials would be compared to in-person format? How do you plan to keep it as effective as it would be otherwise?

“The in-person format certainly makes it easier for group activities compared to remote format. I’ve taught a few workshops since COVID restricted conference formats and some of my prior material cannot work remotely. For the activities I’ve planned at Test Masters Academy we won’t need to worry about hands-on activities. I plan on using Miro and CardBoardIT to help facilitate activities and make generous use of file sharing to facilitate my session.”

How would you explain your job as a tester to someone who is not familiar with the field?

“The comparison I draw with testing is with my former career as a scientist. Both jobs require you to be analytical, inquisitive, technical, reflective, passionate, and communicative.  Whereas Science is the pursuit of knowledge for knowledge’s sake, testing is an investigation of a product to reveal quality-related information (presumably to people who care).”

What’s the biggest mistake you see leaders making and what would be your advice to rectify it? 

“From my own experience, I would say some leaders can be deaf to the needs of their team. Sometimes the most important thing you can do as a leader is to listen to your team. Be understanding of their perspective and be willing to change your approach based on that information. Leaders who focus solely on the deliverable without considering how that impacts their team don’t ultimately build trust.”

What’s the most rewarding part about leading people?

“My definition of success is watching them grow and be happy. Their success is how I measure myself as a leader. I care deeply about their professional development so I make a great effort to give them time to learn.”

What would be the one thing you would like to change in the testing profession of the present day?

“I’ve noted there seems to be some animus between members of the testing community on usage of technology (automation, AI, ML, etc.). Healthy discussion is important for us to push boundaries and grow but at times it seems personal. Watching those public battles online or at conferences probably hurts our profession more than it helps, especially since we’re in a focus area that tends to be more restricted by time and budget than others.”

Do you want to share anything else with the TMA community?

“I hope everyone has enjoyed the new conference format. Multiple speaking slots at different times and the sessions spread out over weeks has made it easy for people to engage in their own time. I’m glad Anna decided to keep the conference this year and I look forward to my upcoming workshop.”

Thank you, Thomas, for the interesting conversation. I am looking forward to attending your tutorial.

Dear readers, if this interview inspires you and makes you curious about the tutorial that Thomas is offering with TLC then don’t miss this chance and sign up for it soon. Below are the details:

About the Interviewees:

Thomas Haver

Thomas Haver Test Automation Architect

Thomas is presently serving as a Test Automation Architect. He leads a team of testers, ops engineers, and production support analysts in the adoption of DevOps practices. Previously, he led the enterprise automation support of 73 applications at Huntington National Bank that encompassed testing, metrics & reporting, and data management. Thomas has a background in Physics & Biophysics, with over a decade spent in research science studying fluorescence spectroscopy and microscopy before joining IT.

About the Host:

Astrid Winkler

Astrid is a budding freelance journalist and content writer from Switzerland. Creativity is her passion and writing is her lost-and-found love which she is willing to develop with more care. Connect with Astrid on Linkedin or follow her on twitter @AstridWinkler4