Codess speaks to Ewa Czekalska

Eva Czekalska

What is your current role and can you tell us more about your day to day responsibilities?

My current role is a Lead Software Development Engineer in Test for Xbox within Skype. I have been at Skype for around 8 years. My main responsibilities include defining test strategy, test policy, managing general testing and related tools/infrastructure, people management, planning/managing outsource testing resources, acting as a coach for testing in SCRUM and advocate proactive testing practices to SCRUM teams.

On a daily base I work closely with Product Engineering Manager, Product Manager, and other teams (such as Audio and Video) and actively participate in the product development itself by defining tests, testing the app, bug reports/reviews, collecting/reviewing product quality metrics, working closely with other QE teams (such as Audio, Video, Platform) and provide instant feedback to the development team.

Our QE team currently has 4 testers including 2 women (+ me). I have also new starter coming in July, also a lady :D

We are probably the most feminine QE team in Skype.

What made you choose engineering and how did you end up in this career?

I always wanted to work with computers. Also my father is an electrical engineer so I think that had a positive impact. And I definitely preferred math’s and physics over biology or history.

At what age did your passion for engineering start?

I always wanted to work with computers and connect to the world. I come from a very small town in western Poland, Sulecin, and my first experience with Internet was actually in Sweden, when at 16 years old I went for a school exchange trip. We got a dial up connection at home a couple of months later.

What advice would you give to fellow female engineers to succeed in their careers?

I know applying to technical university can be a daunting but we shouldn’t give up and just do what we feel we want to do rather than what is the social trend for us to do. I think it’s also good to do crazy things sometimes. I believe that you have to take risks in life. As Paulo Coelho said “You have to take risks. You will only understand the miracle of life if you allow unexpected to happen”

If you had a time machine, what period of time would go back to and why?

I joined Skype when it was still a start-up (in 2005) and we had a lots of fun together (not to mention our famous pool party;). Also seeing the company going through different changes and acquisitions together with the rapid growth, I love Skype how it is now but I wish I could do it all again!!!

Thanks Ewa!