Narayanan Ramanathan, Software Development Engineer in Test, Microsoft Ireland Research
Job Software Development Engineer in Test
Employer Microsoft Ireland Research, Dublin
Education BTech in IT and Management, SASTRA, Tanjore, India (2005); Msc in IT, Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna University, Pisa (2006)
During my college days I was very interested in programming and in algorithms – the logic behind programming. It was a natural next step for me to go into this area professionally; I want to shine at what I do.
While living in Italy, Microsoft contacted me through an international jobs site to tell me about their Technical Graduate Training programme, so I applied. After an initial telephone interview I was called to Dublin for a series of face-to-face interviews, followed by a final telephone interview back in Italy.
I’m now based in Dublin working on the next version of the office.microsoft.com website. Several new features are being added to enhance user experience – for example users will be able to submit their own clipart – and I’m responsible for testing this feature. My role is very technical, including C#, ASP.NET and Silverlight technologies. I work closely with the project managers and developers on the team. Most of my work involves trying to predict how users will use this feature to ensure that it works as expected. Rather than performing the testing work manually, we write C# code to do it for us.
Around my day-to-day work I have training and various personal development courses to attend, which I enjoy; there are quite a few social events too, which are a great way to meet people. So far I’ve met people from every level in the company.
Tips for graduates
There are lots of opportunities in this industry, with plenty of scope for growth. Whether you want to become a senior test manager, a development lead or continue in a purely technical line, there’s a career path to suit. In interview situations it’s important to think out loud to demonstrate your thought processes so the interviewer can really gauge how you think.