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QA Engineer vs. QA Analyst: What Are the Differences?

Learn about the two careers and review some of the similarities and differences between them.

A career in quality assurance can be both rewarding and challenging. If you’re interested in working in this field, you may be wondering what the difference is between a QA engineer and a QA analyst. Both roles are important in ensuring the quality of products and services, but they have different responsibilities. In this article, we discuss the similarities and differences between a QA engineer and a QA analyst. We also provide information on the skills and education you need for each position.

What is a QA Engineer?

QA Engineers are responsible for the quality of the software products that they work on. They work with developers to create test plans and test cases to make sure that products meet customer expectations and requirements. QA Engineers also execute these test plans and report any defects that they find. In addition to manual testing, QA Engineers may also use automated testing tools to speed up the testing process. QA Engineers work closely with developers to ensure that products are released on time and with high quality.

What is a QA Analyst?

A QA Analyst is a quality assurance professional who is responsible for testing software to ensure it meets customer expectations and requirements. QA Analysts work with software developers and other IT professionals to create test plans and test cases. They execute these test plans and report any bugs or issues that they find. QA Analysts also work with developers to resolve these issues. In some cases, QA Analysts may also be responsible for writing and executing automated tests. QA Analysts typically have a strong understanding of software development life cycles and methodologies.

QA Engineer vs. QA Analyst

Here are the main differences between a QA engineer and a QA analyst.

Job Duties

QA engineers perform more technical duties, like creating test plans, designing automated software testing tools and conducting research into the quality assurance process. They also manage QA teams and provide guidance to employees on how to improve processes for ensuring software quality.

QA analysts conduct usability tests, review reports on software bugs and evaluate the effectiveness of QA procedures. They often communicate with stakeholders to explain QA findings and make recommendations for improvement. Additionally, QA analysts may create documentation about QA procedures and policies and train new employees in these materials.

Job Requirements

QA engineers and QA analysts typically need a bachelor’s degree in computer science, engineering or another related field. Some employers prefer candidates to have a master’s degree as well, but it is not required for entry-level positions. Additionally, many QA professionals pursue certifications through the American Software Testing Qualifications Board (ASTQB) or the International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB). These organizations offer training programs that teach professionals how to use software testing tools and other quality assurance methods.

Work Environment

QA engineers and QA analysts typically work in different environments. While both professionals may work for software companies, the engineer usually works on a team that develops new products or updates existing ones. They often collaborate with developers to ensure their projects meet quality standards.

QA analysts usually work for larger organizations like corporations or government agencies. Their job is to test applications and systems to ensure they’re secure and function properly. The analyst may also provide training to users so they can use the system correctly.


Both quality assurance engineers and analysts use similar skills to perform their jobs, such as problem-solving, critical thinking and attention to detail. They also both need to have a strong understanding of the product or service they are testing and the ability to identify errors or potential areas for improvement.

However, there are some key differences in the skills each position requires. Quality assurance engineers tend to focus more on the technical aspects of testing, such as writing and executing test plans and scripts, debugging software and analyzing code coverage. They also need to be familiar with various testing tools and methodologies. Quality assurance analysts, on the other hand, focus more on the business side of things, such as working with stakeholders to understand their needs and requirements, creating user stories and scenarios and conducting usability testing. They also need to be able to effectively communicate their findings to various teams within an organization.


The average salary for a QA engineer is $82,083 per year, while the average salary for a QA analyst is $73,639 per year. The average salary for both positions may vary depending on the size of the company, the location of the job and the level of experience the employee has prior to taking the job.


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