In what seems like a lifetime ago (it’s been six years), I wrote about Titles for Testers (tl;dr – they don’t matter). My wordpress stats tell me that it’s one of my most popular posts with links from a crapload of sites.
The 2017 update is that titles still don’t matter. Well, they do in a way. Titles (especially for testers) are a distraction.
Last night on twitter, I saw this job advertisement tweet.
— Michael Gilmartin (@MHGilmartin) October 2, 2017
Totally cool (and worth it) to publish job postings on twitter, and Blizzard makes fantastic (your opinion may vary) games. I’ve played 1000’s of hours of Warcraft, Diablo, Starcraft and even some Hearthstone. I should have played Overwatch too, but couldn’t carve off the time.
Then, there’s the job title.
WTF is a Test Lead Eleven? Oh wait, those are Roman numerals – it’s a Test Lead 2.
WTF is a Test Lead II?
Wait, it’s worse. The job description describes the job as “Associate Test Lead”.
I’m sure A Test Lead II falls right between a Test Lead I and a Test Lead III – or maybe the former is called a Test Lead and the latter a Senior Test lead, but putting that title in that post isn’t going to help Blizzard (or anyone) find the right candidate. In fact if I were looking for a mid-level test lead job, and I saw a posting with that title, my heeby-jeeby HR bureaucracy spidey sense may tell me to steer clear.
Short story is that it’s an exciting job for the right person. I’m not picking on Blizzard – they’re awesome. I’m picking (yet again) on job titles.
Now, it’s one thing if you’re recruiting internally. At the Big M, role moves were lateral, and job titles reflected the level of the role. If you’re advertising the job to people who know what the lingo means, you can use corporate dictated titles. That makes sense.
But when recruiting externally, you have to turn that shit off. If you want to exude an air of fun and excitement, why throw a bureaucratic title into the description? Sure, you’re going to have to give whoever you hire a title that matches the corporate structure, but that doesn’t mean you can’t troll for a Test Lead or Test Leader or Test Manager, or Quality Rockstar, or Badass Guild Master in your external job postings and social media.
Now I’m off to review job titles at my own company before the discoveries of hypocrisy roll in.