My internship experience this summer as a Quality Assurance intern in the Research and Development department has been very engaging and has provided me with many opportunities. The R&D team was created to design new products that encompass the vision that so many employees at HCSS have for the construction industry. An idea can only be visualized to a certain extent before it takes a team to come together and make it come to life.
I came into this summer internship with only one college semester left before I graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems. The QA role seemed to be a great fit to reflect all the things I had learned in classes up to this point, and it provided me with an opportunity to implement and further expand that knowledge. In my college classes, I learned about a lot of the daily workflows and terms used around the workplace, but I had never had the chance to apply them to real-life scenarios.
Most of my daily work consisted of finding bugs in new releases and posting them to a scrum board for our developers to pick up and fix. Afterwards, I would grab the bugs they had worked on and verify that they functioned properly. This process would run in roughly two-week cycles called sprints, and, at the end, we would call a meeting to analyze the positives and negatives that happened and ways we could improve for the next sprint. This was the routine Agile development system the team had been going through for months before I joined them.
One unique learning experience I got was visiting a load site where dump trucks were getting loaded up with dirt by an excavator to create a retention pond. The HCSS Trucking application that I’ve been testing all summer is optimized to make the ticket writer’s job extremely simple and eliminate the use of the paper ticket system that the trucking industry has always used. Out at the site, we would go to meet up with the ticket writer who is using the app. We would gather bug info and ask for input on improving our app based on their usage in the field. Getting to see their jobs and bring those thought processes back to the office allowed me to create better use-case scenarios for testing. This also allowed me to offer feature suggestions that will help optimize the user experience.
When I reflect on the experience I had with this internship, one thing that sticks out is the relationships I’ve built with so many people at this company. It has been great to see how much a team can get accomplished through clear communication and the common drive each member has to innovate an industry in so many new ways.