IC4 Quality Engineer
I autonomously improve the quality process exercised by my group and drive very broad or highly technical projects
Area of ownership and level of autonomy / ambiguity
- I own and deliver semi-annual/annual goals for my team.
- I am an expert at identifying the right solutions to solve ambiguous, open-ended problems that require tough prioritization.
- I define technical solutions or efficient operational processes that level up my team.
Organizational reach and extent of influence
- I am a strong leader for my team with my impact beginning to extend outside my team
- I increasingly optimize beyond just my team by driving cross-team or cross-discipline initiatives
Technical levers typically exercised to achieve business impact
- Technical Strategy - I play a key role in setting medium-to-long term strategy for business-impacting projects.
- Project Leadership - I autonomously define and deliver technical roadmaps of larger projects, often involving cross-team dependencies.
- Product Expertise - I actively keep customer needs in mind and leverage input from product stakeholders as available to determine the right technical solutions to deliver customer value quickly
- Mentorship - I actively level up less-experienced members of my team by helping them with their craft, providing guidance, and setting a good example
- I deliver many of my team’s goals on time and with a high standard of quality
- My understanding of the business context and my team’s goals enable me to have the greatest customer impact and allows me to make independent technical decisions in the face of open-ended requirements
- I can identify when my results aren’t moving the needle for our business/team goals or serving the needs of customers in a meaningful way and work with manager to redirect my focus
- I get work to a simple place by focusing on the heart of the problem and prioritizing the right things
- I proactively identify new opportunities and advocate for and implement improvements to the current state of projects — potentially having broader business impact across teams or products
- I take responsibility for my decisions, and failures on my project and take action to prevent them in the future. I embrace and share the learnings from those failures
- When I encounter barriers, I unblock myself and my team by proactively assessing and eliminating the root cause, and focusing on the solutions
- I respond with urgency, and drive urgency in my team to operational issues (e.g., SEVs), owning resolution within my sphere of responsibility
- I actively seek out and eliminate sources of toil on the team and help reduce the impact of KTLO and SEVs
- I am unafraid of declaring a SEV when needed
- I make informed decisions by having productive debate with the right stakeholders, seeking diverse perspectives, balancing details with the big picture, and optimizing for the company
- I understand the implications of my decisions and adjust my approach based on the impact and risk (e.g. choosing a more iterative approach based on the degree of uncertainty with respect to product fit, while maintaining a view of the long term arc needed to accomplish business goals)
- I leverage insights about customers to inform decisions, balancing value for the customer with other business goals
- I make timely decisions and don’t cut corners that would compromise my customer’s trust
- I embrace change and adapt quickly to it
- I remain resilient through change by staying calm under pressure and taking care of my well-being
- I navigate ambiguity by focusing on the greater purpose, goals, and desired impact to move forward one step at a time
- I have a growth mindset and am comfortable experimenting with new approaches, learning, owning the outcomes, and sharing what I learned
- I am beginning to push boundaries to generate and implement ideas that aim to drive our products and tools forward
- I set audacious goals, take risks, and share lessons learned
- I define the technical roadmap for impactful multi-phase projects, refining it as the projects progress to deliver customer value quickly, and provide leadership for the people executing on the project
- In partnership with my manager I define my team's priorities and secure buy-in by engaging stakeholders, and aligning with company priorities and customer needs
- I generate excitement for my/the team's strategy
- I proactively ask for feedback from my manager, team, and cross-functional stakeholders. I know my strengths, and identify ways to take actions on my development areas
- I have self-awareness and connect with others with empathy
- I drive discussions with my manager about aspirational goals and seek out opportunities to learn and grow (e.g., PGP, Dropbox-offered training, leveraging perks allowance etc.)
- I model integrity and a high standard of excellence for my work. I leverage this to set and hold the bar for quality and best practices for my team (e.g. via code and design reviews)
- I identify and support areas of growth for my teammates that take into account their unique skills, strengths, backgrounds and working styles
- I solicit and offer honest, constructive, direct, and actionable feedback that is delivered with empathy to help others learn and grow into the next level
- I actively contribute to interviewing, and gain the trust of candidates and can represent Dropbox's mission, strategy, and culture throughout the interview process
- I am able to represent my team’s technical challenges to potential candidates in a compelling way (e.g. 1:1 sell chats, blog posts, public speaking)
- I promote and role model Dropbox core values, leading by example
- I build relationships and drive coordination across teams & disciplines, helping get to positive outcomes
- I proactively communicate and coordinate my team’s requirements with other groups and teams in engineering
- I am effective at working with cross-functional stakeholders to identify technical blindspots and clarify ambiguity in their ideas
- I engage in productive conflict with thoughtful questioning and have the courage to state my point of view
- I avoid blame and solve the right problems, disagreeing and committing when necessary to move decisions forward
- Working with my manager, I leverage the unique strengths & skills of the members of my team, and help identify talent gaps required for team success
- I enable others to bring their authentic selves at work and contribute to building community at Dropbox
- I ensure diverse perspectives are included, leveraging inclusive meeting practices
- I practice the Dropbox Diversity Commitments on a regular basis
- I champion good virtual first practices that help my team collaborate effectively
- I help shape the Dropbox engineering culture through my involvement with activities outside of my team (e.g. presenting tech talks, participating in Eng RFCs, creating interview questions, planning hackweek)
- I communicate with clarity, brevity, focus, and tailor my message to my audience presenting it at the right altitude
- I proactively share information so the relevant stakeholders are informed and aligned
- I seek to listen and understand others
- I am effective in holding crucial conversations even when uncomfortable
- I influence stakeholders across a variety of audiences
- I act as a partner to my manager in setting the cultural tone for the team. I support an environment of psychological safety where all Dropboxers are included and heard to support connection, empathy, and productive conflict where dissenting opinions are valued and addressed
- I help my team network and build relationships across Dropbox, creating connection and inclusion across my team and with other teams
- The expectations for L3 Software Design are still applicable here (though some specialist engineers may go deep in this area)
- I am able to give quality feedback on technical designs for both feature and test infrastructure designs written by cross-functional partners (ex: can include development of multiple features/components together) and QE peers. I ask probing, insightful questions that solidify choices and surface erroneous assumptions.
- I effectively and quickly debug cross-module issues, and may intuit where bugs might lie due to my deep knowledge of revenue and customer impacting workflows.
- I am able to deeply understand technical designs with multiple components interacting across API or system boundaries. I effectively build and execute test scenarios that uncover technical bugs/failures between components. Based on my deep knowledge of the features/infrastructure/tooling supporting features in my products, I’m able to surface risks and potential mismatches in expectations between system components.
- I effectively manage quality for major feature development projects and major refactor projects reliably - including generating and reporting quality metrics/measurements, active participation in technical and design spec reviews, and surfacing and reporting on risks throughout the PDLC
- I’m responsible for alignment of my quality practices to the overall QE team strategy, making tradeoffs where appropriate in consultation with my Engineering Manager.
Quality Engineering Fluency
- The expectations for L3 Quality Engineering fluency are still applicable here (though some specialist engineers may go deep in this area)
- Partnering with my EM, I identify and develop high impact quality management strategies that will have a lasting impact on my QE teams ability to effectively manage quality for highly complex and ambiguous projects.
- I effectively engage with QE peers outside of my direct scope/team to remain in alignment on the needs of our customers and overall business goals. I use this information to inform how/when/where I deploy my quality practices.
- I partner closely with SDET’s to develop testing & automation strategies for complex feature development cycles that have a heavy dependency on test automation and require non-traditional approaches to quality management
- I look for ways to simplify quality practices and participate in technical discussions on how to simplify feature code and test infrastructure. I prioritize tasks that lead to increased quality process efficiency and developer productivity.
- I can find ways to improve quality management efficiency as measured by cycle time, ramp-up time, or other similar measurements.
- I avoid re-inventing the wheel by leveraging other Dropbox solutions or off-the-shelf solutions with possible trade-offs in mind. I develop approaches and documentation that can be extended and adopted y other teams at Dropbox to increase efficiency
- I avoid introducing toil and future maintenance work by proactively avoiding scaling issues and providing adequate documentation.
- I actively contribute to the quarterly/annual strategic planning for my direct QE team.
- I have built/maintained relationships with cross-functional partners that allow me to effectively participate in product planning sessions where I successfully have quality initiatives prioritized as first class items that are actioned against with the right level of urgency an investment.
- I independently drive a set of quality metrics/measurements that align with my QE team goals and have impact that reach beyond my direct QE team to influence QE department goals and priorities, and may impact cross-functional team goals as well.
Test Automation & Infrastructure
- I effectively advocate for automation framework extensions that will lead to more efficiency in my quality management process
- I effectively troubleshoot and surface issues to SDETs regarding the automation scripts I consistently run as part of my feature development and regression testing cycles
- I engage in listening sessions (All Hands, Quarterly Business Updates, etc.) to increase my learning and guide my work/priorities
- I have a working knowledge of Dropbox’s org/team structure and how teams work together across Dropbox, and am able to help my team effectively collaborate effectively with other teams across our org