The internet seems to have a lot of resources regarding automation testing, with so much information things can get confusing very quickly. My aim is to give back to the testing community and share my experiences transitioning from a Manual to an Automation tester and a SDET. I am hoping to do this in a structured way, in the context of UI Automation using Selenium Webdriver and C#. This same idea can be applied to other object oriented programming languages.

There are tons of ways a problem can be solved, everything i am sharing, i learnt from other successful individuals because I prefer to learn from other people’s mistake. What you will see me share is how I have structured the lessons learnt to create something useful and kind of, unique.

The Software Developer Engineer in Test (SDET) and the Automation Tester have very similar Soft Skills set, one of which is Creativity but the context to which it applies do differ. This knowledge is important so that you can understand your role and what is expected of you during automation implementation. I have separated these two roles as there is usually confusion between them.

An SDET finds creative ways to Develop a software to test software. They make software just like developers. On the other hand, a QA Engineer/ Automation Tester (so many names but you get the gist), find creative ways to break the software. They design test scenarios and scripts to expose any issues in the Application under test using using the Test Framework developed by the SDET.

When these two work together there is a lot that can be achieved.

I have put together some skills matrix, showing which tools and skills i feel are most relevant to individual roles.

How will this matrix help?

The idea behind this is to help you figure out which skills set you should put in extra effort compared to others. I believe this will help save a lot of time in your transitioning depending on which path you choose to take. The SDET or the Automation Tester route.


Strong– Practical and Working knowledge is required. You should be able to get creative and make things with the skill.

Moderate – Only Specific aspects of skill is required to function

Low – High level knowledge of skill is required e.g. can comfortably refer to google and utilize skill if and when required.

Technical Skills and Tools SDET Automation Tester
Programming Language (Java C# Ruby etc) Strong Low
Unit Testing (Tdd) Moderate N/A
Html Moderate Low
CSS Low Low
JavaScript (Assuming not the primary language being used) Moderate Low
OOP Design Patterns & Principles (POM, Solid) etc Moderate  Low
Application Under Test Moderate  Strong
Databases ( SQL)  Moderate  Low
Operating Systems and Webserver Moderate  Low
Software Testing Moderate  Strong
SDLC Strong  Strong
Unit Testing Tools (Nunit Junit etc) Moderate Moderate
Test Scenario & Case Design Low  Strong
Bug Reporting Low Strong
Documentation Strong Moderate
Selenium Webdriver Strong Low
IDE Strong Low
Web Browsers Moderate Moderate
Package Management (Nuget, Maven) Moderate Low
Version Control Strong Moderate



SDET Skills

Soft Skills
Problem Solving
Attention to details
Team Work

Automation Tester


Automation Tester Skills

Soft Skills
Problem Solving
Attention to details
Team Work

Click here to to join the tribe and lets play with Selenium Webdriver and build a UI Automation framework from scratch.

Any thoughts, questions, comments, addition, or anything you don’t like, do not hesitate to leave a comment or contact me. Thank you!

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