Where do you work and your role title?
News UK –
Principal Test Automation Engineer in Product Platforms Department
Get To Know Me
Favourite ice-cream flavour: Cookies and cream! (there has to be actual cookie chunks)
Wrap up in the shortest sentence possible what your role means.
I am a Modern Day Software Tester. This means that I collaborate a lot with different teams in News UK to continuously improve the quality culture, define the suitable testing strategy, write automated tests and mentor team members with regards to testing best practices.
What is the interesting / challenging part of your work?
Working with different technologies, especially at News UK where everything is fast paced! This is especially a challenge for Software Testers nowadays as you also need to keep your technical skills sharp so we can communicate and contribute well.
What attracted you to choose a STEM field? How do you find navigating your career path as a woman in tech?
Within my family, mostly everyone works in the healthcare industry and while it’s a great option, I wanted to do something different.
I was always fascinated with technology so I decided to study a STEM subject. During our final year project, I was doing the testing and I enjoyed doing it so I decided to pursue a career within Software Testing.
Being a woman in tech, it can be difficult to find your voice especially if you are the only woman in your team, but you just need to think of this as a positive challenge.
“When you think positively, good things will come eventually.“
What is your biggest achievement that you are most proud of? How do you track and express your achievements in the workplace and beyond?
My biggest achievement related to my career is finally finding my voice in the testing industry. I am at the stage of my career where I am helping a lot of fellow testers, whether it’s through my blog posts, my meet-up or conference talks, or lunch and learn sessions.
I’m also the Co-organiser of the Cypress UK Community Meetup Group. We recently reached 500+ members, which is a big milestone for us since we only launched 3 months ago!
To celebrate these achievements, I wrote a blog post about it, which you can find here on mariedrake.com. I think it’s important to empower yourself and celebrate small successes! 💯
Who are your mentors or role models that helped you either directly or indirectly?
I don’t really have a specific role model. I get inspiration from different people that I am lucky to meet whether it’s a family member, a friend, a work colleague, Twitter and LinkedIn tech community.
“Their stories inspire me to become the best version of myself“
How do you think women can be game-changers in time of crisis?
We are empathetic and inclusive, which I think are really excellent qualities that women leaders should have.
What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader? Are there any technology resources that you would recommend?
I learn new things continuously and write about it. Blogging enables me to apply what I’ve learned and share it with the wider community. I also make it a habit to put myself forward to something that I know that I can do! 😊
It’s your day off. What do you do to relax?
I’m either watching Netflix or reading a book. Most recently, I’ve also been getting back into a fitness routine, which helps with my moods.
What advice would you give to your 21 year old self?
Don’t be scared to find your voice – it might be daunting at the beginning, but just trust the process!
What makes you RARE?
I am very passionate in my career and always thrive to bring my best each day. I am also a mum and I can multi-task my responsibilities at home, at work and my personal brand. My personality type is the “Defender“, which means I am very dedicated and can always be relied on to do the job.
Want to know more about Marie? Connect with her on LinkedIn