Quality assurance engineering is a fast-growing tech profession. As AI solutions start playing a greater role in the operations in tech, there is a greater need for professionals that can check the quality of work done automatically. According to World Quality Report, the demand for quality assurance will rise significantly over the years.
In this article, we will dive into the reasons why quality assurance engineering (QAE) will be on the rise in the next years and why that can be a good choice if you are thinking about switching to tech.
What do quality assurance engineers do?
When you use an app or a website, you’d like it to be an easy, smooth, and intuitive experience. A quality assurance engineer’s job is to make that happen. They ensure a product or service is fully prepared for use by the final customer by running automated and manual tests.
During automated tests, engineers check whether the code is stable, functional, and follows the best practices. Without this test, a new feature or improvement can break the whole architecture of the web application.
During manual tests, QA engineers act as end users, to see if all buttons, modals, visual elements, and connected services function errorless.
If you’d like to know more about what QA engineers do, read our recent article about the profession.
What do experts say about the future of QAE?
There are currently over thirteen thousand QA engineer vacancies on Indeed in the U.S. alone. This number is constantly growing, as the demand for QA engineers is closely tied to the expansion of the tech market.
Neeraj Kumar, Chief of Business-Technology at Wishup, a platform for remote workers, estimates that soon for every two software developers, there will be a QA tester. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics confirms that the total number of software developers, QA testers, and engineers will increase by 25% by 2031. It predicts that roughly 162,900 new vacancies will appear in the country's market for these specialists over the next decade. According to the tech job board Dice, QA engineering will grow in demand for years to come.
Being a QA engineer is not only a promising career path, but it is also a well-paying one. According to Indeed.com, the salary of a quality assurance engineer varies from $67,000 to 115,000 per year.
With all these benefits, can there be pitfalls in pursuing a QA engineering career now, when AI is predicted to replace many jobs? Surprisingly, AI contributes to the fact that QA specialists are in demand, and here are some reasons why.
Reason 1: Constant growth of requirements for the quality of IT products
Each year software becomes more and more complex, and the continuity of its operation is more critical. Errors in programs cost companies millions of dollars. Knight Capital Group had invested in a stock trading bot, which, due to an error, bought various shares for $7 billion in just 45 minutes. The company didn’t have enough money, so the shares had to be sold the next day. This mistake resulted in a loss of approximately $440 million before taxes, and in the summer of the following year, Knight Capital Group was acquired by its competitor, Getco LLC.
Companies must develop and improve the quality of their software. Poor software now costs U.S. companies more than $2 trillion annually due to recurrent bugs and downtime. This forces companies to adapt, as they must improve the quality of their decision reviews to align with QA. QA engineers will play one of the key roles in quality control.
Reason 2: AI development
Ironically, it is most likely that AI will lead to the increasing demand for QA engineers. Edoardo Turelli, former Vice President of Engineering at Adbrain and now an independent consultant, noted that the role of AI in code generation will only grow in the near future. The flow of AI-generated data will require extensive testing and control. Software development will not consist so much of writing code but of analyzing what’s already available.
If AI is responsible for at least half of the application's code, there will be a need for specialists to guarantee its work is impeccable. Complex projects that rely on machine learning and AI often involve MLOps or Machine Learning Ops. It’s a set of practices for collaboration and communication between data scientists, data engineers, QA engineers, and DevOps professionals. Its task is to reliably and efficiently deploy and maintain machine learning models in production. This includes version control, software management, and cybersecurity.
At each stage, QA engineers take care of everything that can happen once AI goes into production. With the spread of these practices, QA will quickly become a bottleneck, stimulating the demand for professionals with relevant skills.
Reason 3: Investing in new software
The Bureau of Labor Statistics adds that the increased demand for quality assurance specialists will be associated, among other things, with the development of software for artificial intelligence, the “Internet of Things”, and robotics. Investments in these areas will lead to an increase in demand for developers and specialists capable of ensuring the quality of IT solutions.
The quality assurance for this software will be slightly different than that for end users, as machines will be the major operators of the programs. And if software-for-humans should operate error-free, so that companies don’t lose clients and profit, software for robotics should be even more infallible, as one minor error can break down the whole system.
How to become a QA engineer
As you can see, QA engineering is in very high demand and will continue to be so in years to come. It’s also considered one of the easiest entries into tech industries, with many prospects for growth.
If you’re thinking about a career in tech, QA engineering may be a good choice. Enroll in TripleTen’s five-month online program and become a QA engineer, earn a salary of about $70,000 per year, and secure a bright future. We’ll help you master a new profession and land your dream job, as most of our graduates get their first paycheck within 180 days after graduation.