Meet a Tester: Karel In Meet a Tester, we feature QA experts from our community who share their love for quality and Testlio. Karel is a Czech native and a soon-to-be dad. Karel Where are you from and what languages do you speak? I’m from the Czech Republic and my native language is Czech. I also speak English and somewhat German. I think I should also say Slovak as well, but my wife hates it when I speak Slovak, because I embarrass her with the accent I usually add for effect, so no I don’t speak Slovak. What is your educational background? After high school, I tried college but dropped out after 2 years. I tried to finish it a few years later, but it proved too much with the workload I had by that time. With that said, I have credentials that prove I know how to pour a beer properly, give CPR, and process wood to create furniture. But as far as IT certificates go, I never felt the urge to obtain any, except for the digital ones from Microsoft Virtual Academy (R.I.P.) and Coursera, which are worthless but teach you so much. How did you end up testing for Testlio? Well, a couple of years ago, I applied for a job at this local tech company and the HR lady sent me a calendar invitation that included the name of the guy (Hey Marek!) I was supposed to meet. Like a proper stalker, I googled him and found his LinkedIn profile – and there it was, Testlio was listed among his testing experience. So I took a look and registered, didn’t complete the onboarding process, and forgot about it (sorry!). A year later, I received an email from Testlio indicating that I might be eligible for a project if I finish the mandatory tests – so I did. The rest, as they say, is history. I’ve been testing and loving it, trying to catch-up (score-wise) with the ‘guy from the interview’, but that will never happen, as he’s about to hit 100k soon. Karel working What do you like about Testlio? I like the wide range of the projects I can participate in and the time flexibility. And the people, oh I really love the whole crew and the vibe in the community, everyone is helping wherever it’s possible. What are your specialties? To be honest, I think of myself as a ‘Jack of all trades, master of none’. But in my regular job, I mostly deal with deployment/installation as I maintain and develop the installation packages. So Windows Installer, InstallShield, C#, C++, and VBScript are my daily/weekly bread. How does Testlio’s pay compare to your market rate? Based on my experience, I think Testlio’s pay rate is way above average. How do you manage the balance between testing and personal life? For now, it’s very simple. My day-to-day job is rather flexible, not as much as testing for Testlio but good enough. So it’s not a problem to work during the night or over the weekend if there is anything left to finish, but that doesn’t happen very often. However, by the end of this month, we are expecting a baby girl, so that’s going to be a totally new experience and I will see how it goes. Also, we would love to move out of the city in the near future, which means I would either quit the regular job and become a full-time freelancer or continue to work for the current company remotely… how it all turns out in the end, is in the stars. Karel and his lovely wife What motivates you professionally? First I must say that I’m not looking to pursue a big fancy career, as I really like my peace and prefer a more balanced ‘work-life’. I enjoy learning new things (hence why I consider myself a jack of all trades) and Testlio is a perfect place for that. Because of the variety of projects available, you get to gain new knowledge every cycle! What’s an interesting fact about yourself? I find everything about myself ordinary except for the nose, I think I have a really big nose! What apps do you like to use? The only app I use daily is Spotify, for obvious reasons. And then there is this special Czech app that I love called Nesnezeno – it’s Czech for ‘not eaten’ and the main purpose of this app is to help restaurants/bistro/cafes avoid wasting food. So during the afternoon/evening they upload their unsold food inventory (daily meals, cakes, drinks, etc.) into the app and sell it at a much lower price. I really love the idea behind this app and hope it spreads even more. How would you convince a friend to join Testlio? I already convinced a friend/colleague to join Testlio. It wasn’t very hard to do – I just sent her the link, she asked if it was the real deal, and I said yes. That’s it. So I guess Testlio itself does a good job convincing people to join, all that’s needed is to spread the word.