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What Is a QA Engineer? How to Become One, Salary, Skills.

Quality assurance (QA) engineers test and debug products throughout the product development process. Here’s what to know about a QA engineer’s needed skills, salary and how to become one.


What Is a QA Engineer?

QA engineers are responsible for ensuring a product is meeting quality requirements before its launch. They do this by monitoring every stage of the product development process and suggesting corrections that range from basic product necessities to feature improvements and optimizations.


What Do QA Engineers Do?

QA engineers assess and troubleshoot a product’s software in order to meet quality standards during the development lifecycle. 

QA Engineer Responsibilities

  • Determine general and specific quality requirements for products.
  • Create manual and automated software tests to identify functionality issues.
  • Analyze testing results and implement or communicate solutions to developers.
  • Review final product functionality before commercial release.

Day-to-Day Responsibilities of QA Engineers

  • Program test cases and test scripts to find and correct coding bugs.
  • Track quality issues and maintain documentation.
  • Repeat and verify testing for previous issues.
  • Identify areas for improvement in testing processes.

QA Engineers Within a Company

QA engineers are usually part of a product team and tend to report to senior QA engineers within a company.

Importance of QA Engineers

QA engineers intentionally seek out and remove product errors that could otherwise be missed during development. Their work helps to improve overall product usability and customer reception upon release.

Role of a QA Engineer | QA Engineer Job Description | By Elizabeth Turner. | Video: HiCounselorr


What Skills Are Needed to Be a QA Engineer?

Qualifications to Be a QA Engineer

  • Two or more years of experience in software development, software testing or similar roles. 
  • Ability to build and perform manual and automated software testing processes.
  • Ability to conduct test analysis and verify quality requirements.
  • Familiarity with software testing in relation to specific stages of product development.

QA Engineer Prerequisites

  • Bachelor’s degree in computer science, engineering or related field. 

QA Engineer Hard Skills

  • Expertise in software testing and A/B testing tools.
  • Proficiency in computer programming languages (C#, Java, JavaScript, Python).
  • Experience with software debugging tools.
  • Experience with integrated development environment (IDE) programs.
  • Knowledge of QA testing for desktop, mobile and console platforms.

QA Engineer Soft Skills

  • Ability to pay close attention to detail.
  • Critical thinking.
  • Problem-solving skills. 
  • Verbal and written communication skills.

Tools and Programs QA Engineers Use

  • C#
  • C++
  • Java
  • JavaScript
  • Jira
  • LoadRunner
  • Python
  • QA Wolf
  • SQL
  • Testim 
  • Visual Studio
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How to Become a QA Engineer

QA Engineer Education and Experience

QA engineers usually hold a bachelor’s degree in computer science, engineering or a related field.

QA engineer candidates are also expected to obtain two or more years of experience in software development, software testing or similar roles. Knowledge of manual and automated software testing, testing analysis tools, product development and quality assurance tools and methodologies are recommended.

QA Engineer Certificates and Courses

QA Engineer Career Path

Before stepping into the QA engineer role, professionals may need to gain experience as a software developer, software tester or a related role. After experience as a QA engineer, professionals can move into a senior QA engineer role. From this point, roles like QA lead, QA manager or director of quality assurance are available. 


QA Engineer Salary and Job Outlook

Quality assurance analyst roles, including QA engineers, will see employment increase 25 percent by 2031.

The full compensation package for a QA engineer depends on a variety of factors, including but not limited to the candidate’s experience and geographic location. See below for detailed information on the average QA engineer salary.


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QA Engineer Certifications + Programs

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General Assembly’s Software Engineering Immersive is a transformative course designed for you to get the necessary skills for a coding role in three months. 

The Software Engineering bootcamp is led by instructors who are expert practitioners in their field, supported by career coaches that work with you since day one and enhanced by a career services team that is constantly in talks with employers about their tech hiring needs.


What you'll accomplish

As a graduate, you’ll have a portfolio of projects that show your knowledge of fundamental programming concepts, as well as experience with languages, frameworks, and libraries that employers demand. Throughout this expert-designed program, you’ll:

  • Create a front-end web application with modern JavaScript frameworks such as Angular or React.

  • Develop and deploy full-stack applications with in-demand technologies such as Ruby on Rails, Python with Django, and Express with Node.js.

  • Build secure full-stack applications by leveraging common design and architectural patterns like model–view–controller (MVC) and Representational State Transfer (REST).

  • Practice version control and collaborative software development with Git and GitHub.

  • Safely model and store data in SQL and NoSQL databases.

  • Consume and integrate third-party application programming interfaces (APIs) in an application.


Why General Assembly

Since 2011, General Assembly has graduated more than 40,000 students worldwide from the full time & part time courses. During the 2020 hiring shutdown, GA's students, instructors, and career coaches never lost focus, and the KPMG-validated numbers in their Outcomes report reflect it. *For students who graduated in 2020 — the peak of the pandemic — 74.4% of those who participated in GA's full-time Career Services program landed jobs within six months of graduation.  General Assembly is proud of their grads + teams' relentless dedication and to see those numbers rising. Download the report here.


Your next step? Submit an application to talk to the General Assembly Admissions team



Note: reviews are referenced from Career Karma - https://careerkarma.com/schools/general-assembly

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