Simon Peter Schrijver – AST 2018 Board Candidate Questions and Answers

1. How do you intend to promote diversity within the AST? How could AST promote diversity, of all kinds, within our own organization and within the wider testing and technology communities?

Diversity is something we need to address in all layers of the society, not only in an organization like AST. Nevertheless we can be one of the frontrunners. We must. We have to treat people as equal, in various context. We must expose ourselves to be the organization where everybody is welcome. An organization where everybody get a chance, a listening ear for all kind of situations and challenges. First thing we can do is to organize next years CAST conference where we have diversity in gender and experience.

2. Please share your vision for the future of the AST’s BBST program.
BBST is a good program, but it needs to be upgraded. The theory is still valid but the questions and examples are not from today. With the BBST content owners we have to come to terms. To see what they have done (improved) and where we as AST can contribute. As AST, we can create extra programs about nowadays test challenges and provide this to our community.
3. What do you think the AST board has historically done well, and what do you think needs to change?

The AST as an organization kept on going with the things she promotes like the BBST program, CAST conferences and the Grant program. Lately we have started with webinars, but we did not keep it going. We tried a program like WHOSE (Workshop on Self Education in Software Testing). These new initiatives can be expanded. I like to start with setting up small communities of experts who can come up with webinars and provide means of self education. Communities on specific topics like security, accessibility, existing things like testing mobile apps, exploratory testing, test coaching, but also new things like testing with artificial intelligence.

4. If you are elected to serve on the board, what is your vision for the future of AST and what do you hope to accomplish as part of the board?

I hope to build an organization which serves the test community all over the world. Start to form local chapters (geographically) where people can go to and meet up. Or seek partnerships in areas  where we can contribute.

I want the AST become a modern organization which can adapt to the challenges as we facing as testers. To be a frontrunner in the new things that come to us.

5. Many people come to be AST Board of Directors candidates through a long history of community involvement. This community involvement usually involves teaching, creating and running peer conferences, creating and running regular conferences, and working with commercial entities.

These are all wonderful and valuable activities, but they might create conflicts for board members. One problem is that a board member spending time helping a personal conference to thrive means less or no time spent on AST events. The other problem, and the more important one, is that knowing program and financial information of a personal event will affect decisions made for AST events and initiatives and vice versa.
Please describe any current initiatives you participate in that might affect your ability to serve on the AST board, and serve the AST membership.
I have stopped with all initiatives, i.e. sending CfP to speak at conferences or participating in other programs. I’m not planning to go to conferences at this time. The only thing planned for this moment is the BBST Test Design course later this year, where I’m one of the instructors. I hope to continue this activity.
6. (Optional) Would you like to provide a short (250-400 word) introduction to go on your candidate page?

Simon (Peter) is a very experienced all-round tester, who has worked since 1997 as tester, test coordinator and test manager. He has many years of experience using SBTM as a test approach. Since 2005, Simon works as an independent consultant. He visits annually at least two conferences and/or two training sessions to keep his knowledge up to date and where necessary, broaden/deepen his knowledge. The last years, Simon (Peter) can be seen as a speaker. He has spoken at several major conferences (twice at CAST) in different parts of the world.

Simon (Peter) has been an active member of the AST for about 10 years. I’ve attended the CAST conferences since 2011 (missed CAST 2015). I’ve attended some peer conferences organized thru the AST like STiFS and WOPR. I’ve become facilitator for the AST to help out with peer conferences and the CAST conference.

Simon (Peter) is also an active member of TestNet and (co-founder of) the Dutch Exploratory Workshop on Testing. In these communities of enthusiastic testers he is active with peers and discuss with them on the testing profession to keep up to date and improve themselves.