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MSTB sets up RM11mil software testing lab

By Steven Patrick

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Software Testing Board (MSTB) spent RM11mil setting up its software testing lab in Puchong here.

Mastura Samah, president of MSTB, said the lab — called the Q Lab — has 50 certified software testers and has garnered interest from several local and foreign companies.

She declined to name the companies and said the lab would be officially launched in the near future.

Software testing involves detecting flaws and bugs in software before the products are released commercially, and the programs are also tested for ease-of-use.

The building of the lab dovetails with MSTB’s plan to position Malaysia as the regional hub for software testing. It also wants the country to be internationally recognised for software testing services.

Its plan involves offering state-of-the-art testing facilities and to attract software developers in neighbouring countries to employ the services of its certified lab testers.

“The fact that we speak English gives us an edge over our competitors. We believe that Malaysia can excel in software testing for the oil and gas, telecommunications, and financial services industries,” Mastura said.

The country has 600 certified testers and MSTB’s aim is to increase this to 10,000 over the next five years.

“Two years ago, we only had 90 testers. Malaysians are realising that software testing can be a very lucrative career because a certified tester could earn as much as RM50,000 a month,” she said.

MSTB also organises profile-raising events like the Software Testing Conference (Softec) 2010. The talk is themed Bridging the Gap and will run from July 19 to 21 at the Crowne Plaza Mutiara Hotel.

It targets software testing professionals, students and managers. MSTB expects 600 to 1,000 attendees at the seminar.

Among the speakers will be Dave Miller, vice-president of courier company FedEx, and Professor Jasbir Dhaliwal, head of the system testing excellence programme at the University of Memphis, in the United States.

Softec, now in its third year, will be introducing the Q-Merit Award, that gives recognition to individuals and organisations that have contributed to software testing in Malaysia.