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Quality Assurance Engineer



Create and implement procedures for evaluating product quality.

What does a Quality Assurance Engineer do?

A Quality Assurance Engineer designs and executes product testing in order to identify and fix products’ flaws before they go to market. When a car company wants to assess a vehicle, for instance, it puts crash-test dummies inside and simulates a car wreck. When a food company wants to evaluate peanut butter, it conducts a series of taste tests. And when a software company wants to gauge software, it runs it through a series of diagnostic tests to examine the programming code.

As a Quality Assurance Engineer, you’re employed primarily in the manufacturing and software industries. Senior to Quality Assurance Technicians, you inspect and test products’ appearance and functionality to make sure they comply with government regulations, measure up to company standards, and meet consumer expectations.

Focusing not only on the product but also on its individual parts and pieces, you determine how long they will last, what environmental conditions they can stand up to, and what problems can occur in the course of using them. To accomplish this, you use special diagnostic tools and testing equipment, and conduct “stress tests” during which you do your darnedest to break the product in order to discover its weaknesses. Based on your findings, you then investigate the sources of defects and engineer solutions to fix them, by changing the product design, sourcing new product parts, or implementing new manufacturing processes.

Ultimately, you’re like a Teacher who teaches products: It’s your job as a Quality Assurance Engineer to create, administer, and grade their final exams before they graduate onto store shelves.

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