Quality assurance career resources and hiring guide

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Quality assurance career resources and hiring guide
Molly Sportsman

Quality assurance career resources and hiring guide

As Lorien continues to build a robust Quality Assurance (QA) specialist talent pipeline, you can trust our team to source top candidates and deliver recommendations on the talent marketplace to ensure you meet your growth objectives.

As Lorien continues to build a robust Quality Assurance (QA) specialist talent pipeline, you can trust our team to source top candidates and deliver recommendations on the talent marketplace to ensure you meet your growth objectives. We’ll share insights from staffing and recruiting leaders that are building world-class IT talent communities — by attracting Quality Assurance (QA), Software Engineering, Program, and Product Management, Data, and User Experience (UX) experts — as well as talent for competitive, niche, and developing markets. 

We continually place candidates with specialized QA skill sets and are determined to provide a deeper level of insight and sustain relationships with candidates we know have the potential to make a difference on a team and develop outstanding experiences. 

Quality Assurance (QA) Overview

Quality Assurance professionals will typically work with manual and automation QA engineers in evaluating existing automation frameworks, building new test frameworks, writing and designing automation scripts from scratch, and maintaining automated test scripts to ensure quality control standards are achieved.

Example Quality Assurance (QA) Job Description 

The core job responsibilities and requirements of a Quality Assurance Engineer include:

  • Implementing functional test cases for testing various software components, such as Frontends, REST APIs, Mobile Apps, and Backend Microservices; describing and clearly documenting test plan/procedure and test results
  • Collaborating with Product Owners, Software Architects, Software Developers, and DevOps on best practices, process changes, and standards as part of continuous process improvement


  • BS in Computer Science or equivalent experience and 2-3 years of industry experience testing software, including mobile applications and/or consumer electronic devices
  • Experience with QA processes and software development life cycle
  • Proficiency in working in a Linux/Unix environment • Strong verbal and written communication skills

Key Terminology

Most industries and positions have their own set of technologies, terms, and jargon. The more recruiters and candidates understand and speak this language, the more they are positioned for a competitive advantage.

  • Test Case - A test case is a document that has a set of test data, preconditions, expected results, and post-conditions developed for a particular test scenario to verify compliance against a specific requirement.
  • Negative Path Testing - Negative testing is performed to ensure that the product or application under test does NOT fail when an unexpected input is given. The purpose of negative testing is to break the system and to verify the application response during unintentional inputs.
  • Exploratory Testing - Exploratory testing combines the experience of testers along with a structured approach to testing. Exploratory testing is often performed as a black box testing technique; the tester learns things that, together with experience and creativity, generates good new tests to run.
  • Integration Testing - The purpose of integration testing is to verify the functionality, performance, and reliability of the modules that are integrated.
  • Defect - A software bug arises when the expected result doesn’t match with the actual results. It can also be an error, flaw, failure, or fault in a computer program.
  • Smoke Testing - Smoke testing, also called build verification testing or build acceptance testing, is a non-exhaustive software analysis that ascertains that the most crucial functions of a program work but does not delve into

Core Technical Concepts 

  • Strong knowledge of system testing and software quality assurance best practices and methodologies
  • Hands-on experience in designing front- end automated solutions and frameworks with Selenium WebDriver and/or Appium
  • Experience with API automation testing
  • Experience with writing performance/load testing
  • Experience with SQL Server preferred
  • Understanding of CI/CD automation pipelines using Jenkins Gitlab a plus
  • Familiarity with the agile software development life cycle


  • Does the candidate have strong logic skills and good basic programming skills?
  • Is the candidate comfortable preparing testing notes, test cases, and documentation for a variety of scenarios? Do they have a strong grasp of QA methodology?
  • Do they show strong creativity in their work? Can they think up relevant use cases independently and test accordingly? Do they test to break?
  • Can they thoughtfully interpret test results and advocate for quality throughout the development process? Do they carefully track and monitor issues through resolution?
  • Do they have strong debugging skills? Are they able to analyze issues and their root causes?
  • Are they familiar with your team’s go-to test automation tools (e.g., Selenium)?

Team Compatibility

  • Will the candidate be happy working on the “behind the scenes” side of development?
  • Are they team-oriented and diplomatic? Can they tactfully work with a diverse mix of developers (spanning many job functions,  experience levels, and personalities)?
  • Do they have a knack for process? Can they manage and maintain quality procedures?
  • Do they have strong technical communication skills (both verbal and written)? Can they report issues with clarity and accuracy?
  • Are they comfortable with self-direction?

Power Skills

  • Is the candidate careful and detail-oriented to a fault?
  • Does the candidate have strong non-technical communication skills (both verbal and written)? Can they relay technical concepts to non-technical stakeholders (e.g., product and support)?
  • Can the candidate stay calm under pressure? Are they comfortable acting as the final approver for their team’s work?
  • Is the candidate able to triage requests based on priority and severity? Can they maintain a laser focus on their task list?
  • Does the candidate have strong business and product savvy? Can they quickly grasp the business objectives of a new project?
  • Is the candidate reliable? Do they show strong ownership of their deliverables?

Source: [Checklist} Key Skills of an Effective QA Engineer

Career Pathways

Candidates that seek out Quality Assurance (QA) roles aren’t always pursuing careers in QA. Entry-level developers, especially, will sometimes pursue QA roles as a stepping stone to development work, or to get a foot in the door at your company.

Make sure you understand the candidate’s long-term vision. Are they looking to stay in QA long term? Or is QA only one step in their career path? There isn’t a wrong answer. Both types of candidates can add value to your organization; it all depends on the needs of your team.

Align with your hiring manager on what they need. Are they willing to create a career path to software development? Or are they looking for a tried-and-true QA veteran? No matter their answer, make sure they’re aligned with your candidate. It’ll help shore up retention down the line.

Source: [Checklist] Key Skills of an Effective QA Engineer



Emerging Trend 

The QA market is gradually shifting towards a unified role of a testing professional that is able to automate, develop testing tools, and even write production code when necessary.

Additional Resources

Contact Our Team to Learn More!

If you or someone you know is seeking a job in QA, reach out to Molly.Kopera@lorienglobal.com. Or if you are a client seeking Quality Assurance (QA) talent for a project or direct hire role, please contact us at info@lorienglobal.com.

The team has experience across various levels, from placing graduates to C-suite candidates. Whether you are looking for QA Engineers and/or functions that range to QA Managers, we will be able to source the right candidate for you!

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