The New Members Blog Series is a collection of blogs for new members to help them better understand the element14 roadtest program.
How much do you need to know to be a roadtester? What kinds of technical skills do you need to roadtest a product? Do you need to have an EE degree or specialized skills?
For new members and new roadtesters, the above are reasonable questions to ask.
Let me answer them by first highlighting in the table below a range of roadtests and the skill level I think is needed:
|COOL TOOLS: Wiha ESD-Safe Rachet Tool Kit||Low; Hobbyist level|
|3GHz Spectrum Analyzer - R&S® FPC1000||High; RF Engineer|
|:MOVE mini buggy kit + microbit||Low; Maker, Parents with Children|
|Infineon Gate Driver with Truly Differential Input||Very High; Power Engineer|
|BeagleBone AI||Medium to High; Maker to Pro-Maker|
We roadtest a wide variety of products. Some are for hobbyists and some are for professional engineers. What you need to know depends on the product.
This is where I think a little strategy comes in. If you are new to the roadtest program, and you want to get comfortable with doing roadtests, you might look for products that do not require a high level of skills. Once you feel confident, then go ahead and apply to what you'd like.
Roadtester selections are competitive. Sometimes I have 50 applicants and 5 kits to award. So just like applying for a job, tuning your roadtest choice to your skills is a good idea in order to become one of the finalists.
I place great weight on the detailed test procedure/plan that you upload in your application. Demonstrating in the testing plan what you know about the product, its technology, and what you plan on doing with it is very important because the test plan tells me a lot about your job skills.
In the bigger picture of things, I look at roadtests as a learning experience. You should consider applying for a roadtest even if you are not an expert. Yes, you might have to stretch your wings, so to speak, but I have a community of experts to help you along.
RoadTest Program Manager