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Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software) Salary

The average Software Test Quality Assurance Engineer in the United States earns approximately $64K per year. Lower pay rates hover around $38K, and the higher rates verge on $95K per year. Total cash compensation to Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers varies from $38K to $95K; higher pay grades include potential for bonuses and profit sharing as high as $8K each. This group's pay is mainly influenced by the company, followed by years of experience and geography. Job satisfaction for Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers is high. Most Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers survey respondents are men (73 percent). Medical benefits are awarded to a large number, and a fair number earn dental coverage. This snapshot results from replies to PayScale's salary survey.
$40,249 - $91,716
(Median)
$40K
$64K
$92K
MEDIAN: $63,834
10%
50%
90%

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$13.93 - $44.58
(Median)
$14
$25
$45
MEDIAN: $25.00
10%
50%
90%

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Show Annual Salary Show Hourly Rate
National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$32K$64K$96K
Salary
$40,249 - $91,716  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $7,828  
Profit Sharing
$402.68 - $7,871  
Commission
$0.00 - $1,515  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$38,380 - $94,744  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 2,564
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$19$38$57
Hourly Rate
$13.93 - $44.58  
   
Overtime
$13.86 - $54.37  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $7,828  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $1,515  
Profit Sharing
$402.68 - $7,871  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$38,380 - $94,744  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 566
United States (change)

Job Description for Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software)

Some Test/Quality Assurance (QA) Engineers work with computer science-related applications. A lot of what they do involves making sure that software does what it's supposed to do. On a day-to-day basis, they create test plans and test cases to determine whether certain parts of the program function as written. When problems arise, they are responsible for finding and debugging rough spots in the code. QA Software Engineers also review user interfaces to ensure functionality and uniform design. They're present for every step of the software development process, interpreting and reporting testing results to their superiors and the rest of the software team.

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Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software) Tasks

  • Find bugs, defects, and regressions.
  • Design, implement, execute and debug information technology test cases and scripts.
  • Validate and document completion of testing and development.
  • Automate test cases.
  • Verify fixes.

Common Career Paths for Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software)


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Though not the most common occurrence, Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers sometimes become Software Quality Assurance Managers, where the average income is $101K per year. Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers typically move into roles as Quality Assurance Engineers or Test Automation Engineers, and those positions pay $18K more and $22K more, respectively.

Software Development Engineer, Test (SDET) Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software)


Known for taking on a considerable number of Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers, Microsoft Corp, International Business Machines (IBM) Corp., Symantec Corporation, Cisco Systems Inc, and Thomson Reuters are leading firms in the industry. The biggest paychecks can be found at Cisco Systems Inc — the median salary there is $112K; however, employees are subject to a wide range in pay, with the lowest salaries sitting near $68K and highest ones in the neighborhood of $121K. Also paying near the top of the field are Apple Computer, Inc at $98K, Symantec Corporation at $82K, and International Business Machines (IBM) Corp., where Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers annually earn $74K.

Other low-paying employers include Thomson Reuters at $63K and Microsoft Corp at $67K, though some Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers there earn up to $108K.

Popular Skills for Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software)


Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers seem to require a rather large skill set. Most notably, skills in UNIX, Test Automation, Linux, and C are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts in pay of 12 percent. Skills that pay less than market rate include Microsoft Access, HTML, and Microsoft Word. Those familiar with Test Automation also tend to know SQL and Java.

Pay by Experience Level for Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software)

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


More years of relevant experience do not necessarily translate to higher paychecks. Salaries for the relatively untried average out to around $58K, but survey participants with five to 10 years of experience earn a significantly higher median of $71K. Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $80K. Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers who surpass 20 years on the job report pay that isn't as high as one would expect; the median compensation for this crowd sits around $87K.

Pay Difference by Location


San Jose is home to an above-average pay rate for Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers, 34 percent higher than the national average. Software Test Quality Assurance Engineers will also find cushy salaries in New York (+11 percent), San Francisco (+9 percent), San Diego (+8 percent), and Dallas (+8 percent). Portland is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 8 percent. Employers in Atlanta and Redmond also lean toward paying below-median salaries (6 percent lower and 3 percent lower, respectively).

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software) Salaries




National Average
$64,000


Skills That Affect Test / Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer (Computer Software) Salaries

up arrow 12%


up arrow 11%

C
up arrow 9%


up arrow 6%

C++
up arrow 5%

Java
up arrow 3%

National Average
$64,000

SQL
up arrow 1%

C#
up arrow 3%




up arrow 7%


Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 643 votes.

Gender

Female
27 %
Male
73 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
7%
1-4 years
47%
5-9 years
26%
10-19 years
16%
20 years or more
4%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 84% dental benefits Dental: 74%
vision benefits Vision: 63% employee benefits None: 15%