In this post, I would like to guide you and share my knowledge on the steps to be taken to get invites for paid testing projects.
Learn how to get your first paid crowdsourced testing project as a freelance tester.
=> First and foremost, thoroughly understand the topic “Guide to Crowdsourced Testing” and select any of the crowdsourcing sites from the list mentioned on that page. Register/create your account with one or more sites to start getting Crowdsourced testing projects online.
Below are the steps from my experience that will help you in your journey to quickly build your freelance tester profile and start getting Crowdsourced Testing Projects. At the end of this post, we have also answered a few most frequently asked crowdsourced testing questions.
=>> You must read this guide before starting your Crowdsourcing career => The Definitive Guide to Crowdsourced Testing
Follow these steps to get your first paid Crowd Sourcing project:
Step #1) Complete your profile details
- After registering, enter all the details required by the company.
- Mention your complete professional details – the projects you worked on, domain knowledge, your skills, etc..
- Do NOT neglect any details even if you submit your resume/CV.
- Do not hesitate to fill in your details but some details like your residential address etc. might be optional.
- It is useful to add a profile photograph.
- Strictly follow the rules specified during your picture.
- Do not upload any irrelevant images.
- Make your profile 100% complete too.
- Don’t forget to make your profile viewable to the public/clients
Step #2) Device details
- Make sure you enter details under the hardware and device sections. That means you need to list all the details of the devices you own. For example, if you have an iPad you need to mention it as follows:
- Device / Handset manufacturer: Apple
- Device / Handset model: iPad 4 or iPad mini etc
- Device Operating system with version: iOS 9.2.1.
- UDID / Unique ID: if it is a mandatory field
- Wireless Carrier: Airtel
- Browsers: Specify all the browsers installed on the device
- Antivirus: If any installed on the device and the version
- Entering the OS version of the device is most important as there are test cycles/projects that are specific platform/configuration specific.
- Update these details in case you update the OS on your devices
- Add a new device when you purchase any new handset/tablet.
- Always the high end and latest devices are in demand.
- The more devices you have, the higher the scope of getting paid project invites.
- Remove devices that are obsolete or not much in use.
Step#3) Explore the Crowd Sourcing site/organization
- Once you have set up your profile, understand how the organization works and its terms & conditions.
- It is very important to go through the site and understand its flow very well.
- Write to support if you need help with anything.
- Explore each part of the site in detail. For example, look into the help/guide of the site that would explain what needs to be done after a new candidate has registered for that particular site. Some of these sites like uTest (now Applause) use forums as a major medium of communication (Forums has been explained below in detail)
Step #4) Work on unpaid projects initially.
This is very important.
You should be willing to work on unpaid projects as some sites/companies prefer the new candidates to do so. This is like filtering criteria or a written test for companies to filter and get good candidates to be able to assign paid projects or test cycles in the future.
A few companies will invite you to participate in the unpaid test cycles initially as the process followed after being registered.
So, it is very crucial to focus and understand these below points, immediately after accepting the project.
- Carefully go through the overview and description specified in the invite.
- Read the scope and out of scope topics for testing with great detail
- Note the devices that are covered under this test cycle. Usually, for unpaid test cycles, the testing needs to be performed on the PCs but again this is not mandatory. There may be device-specific test cycles too
- Stick to the template (if mentioned), not following the same may get your bug rejected.
If you perform well and score a qualifying grade in this test cycle, you will surely get invites for paid projects soon.
At times, even after getting a good score you may not receive any invites for a few days but do not get disappointed. There are a lot of projects, so there is every chance of getting invites to future projects. Also, remember that some test cycles are specific to regions.
Step #5) Attempt the skill tests
Some of the sites offer skill tests for all sorts of skills.
For example, software testing skill tests, English language skill tests, MS Office skill tests, etc. These tests are available on some of the sites to test the skills of the candidate or tester. Scoring high on these would increase your chances of getting invites for paid projects sooner. For some projects, a high score is also a prerequisite.
Step #6) Expand skill set (especially for people who are new to testing)
Software testing and QA is a huge ocean, so keep expanding your skill sets.
- Learn more about tools for taking snapshots or capturing screen video in case of a mobile / tablet.
- More bug tracking tools
- Crashlog captures tools that are useful while testing mobile applications in either iOS or Android. There are different tools for different devices and operating systems
Knowing and learning new stuff will be useful to all of us.
Step #7) Register or access the forums
- Certain Crowdsourced portals have forums that are very informative and contain links to various sites/portals offering tools and tutorials.
- Forums and blogs are updated regularly with new technology concepts.
- You get to interact with the other testers. For instance, the uTest (now Applause) platform has a huge forum with many users posting regularly.
- The upcoming projects can also be seen here.
- Being active in forums is a plus; you can gain a lot of knowledge while you wait for invites.
- Forums also provide scope for newbies to introduce and endorse themselves. This will help you get noticed
Step #8) Finally you get your first paid project
After all these steps you are sure to land up in a paid project. Be the best at what you do to earn a good rating and gain a positive reputation. It is very important to maintain a rating on some sites to keep getting these invites.
Step #9) Create a PayPal account or set up a payment method.
Finally, it is time to get paid. Most of the sites use either PayPal or another medium to make payments. So it would be better to set up a payment method from the options offered by the site.
Crowdsourced Testing FAQ’s:
Question #1) How do these Crowdsourced testing sites get projects?
Answer: This was the first and foremost question that I had in mind when I got myself registered on one of the Crowdsourced testing sites.
The answer is that the projects are from organizations or people who want to get their sites/products/mobile applications tested in a smaller time frame and that too from people around the globe.
It is more cost-effective for organizations to outsource projects to these sites than building their test teams or delegate them to other software firms.
Since the crowd involved in testing is not limited geologically, the scope of getting better quality increases.
Question #2) When and how will I get paid??
Answer: The most frequently asked question is about payouts. All these Crowdsourced organizations have their terms and conditions for payouts. Most of them pay per bug based on the severity of the bug. Higher rates for the most severe bugs/issues like error pages displayed, 404 errors, etc.
There are certain set slabs of payments based on the priority/severity of the bugs. Hence, earning more money cracking higher severity bugs
Regarding payment methods, most of them use either PayPal or PayUMoney. Once you have a certain amount of money accumulated in your account it will automatically get credited to your account.
Question #3) Why should we work on unpaid projects initially?
Answer: We can consider this as an interview process, wherein both the parties, the tester, and the organization, understand each other. Anybody who executes these unpaid projects successfully will be offered paid projects immediately. If you do not receive any invitations immediately, you need to be very patient and keep updating your skill set and any of the latest devices you have purchased.
Question #4) Who can participate in these crowdsourced test cycles?
Answer: Anybody who has the knowledge or experience in the field of software and would like to earn extra income working on weekends and free time is eligible. Also, one has to have at least the basic knowledge of software testing and be passionate about their work.
Question #5) Why does my rating fluctuate?
Answer: It is very important to maintain a good average score.
The rating of a tester is completely based on the quality of bugs he/she has logged. It depends on the ratio of approved vs. logged bugs. Try to log as many bugs as you can while you test. Don’t wait to finish testing and log the bugs/defects at the end, since the competition is very high and the number of testers is large.
Also, keep an eye on all the bugs so you don’t log a duplicate bug that gets rejected and affects your rating negatively.
Question #6) How do I find bugs faster?
Answer: Firstly, it’s very important to understand the project details or overview given in the invite. Sometimes you might not be given any details in which case you have to go through the whole application thoroughly to get to bugs faster.
It is also important to understand that many testers are working on the same test cycle at the same time. Hence, looking at the bugs being logged can give you an idea of which features are not yet tested by other testers. Target these functionalities to get to bugs faster.
Author: This helpful crowd-sourcing guide is written by Sharada G. She is having 11+ years of Software testing and development experience and working as a freelance tester for the last 3 years.
Those were the few commonly asked questions, which I am hoping are the queries that many of you might have as well.
Please feel free to ask me in case you have any other questions. All the best!