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How to assess QA (quality assurance) skills


Quality assurance (QA) is a crucial step within any organization. It ensures that the quality of a product or service meets customer, company, and industry requirements and expectations. QA involves extensive testing to verify that products and services work as intended before they’re publicly released.

It can be tricky to know what skills a good QA professional should have – and even harder to assess them. In this article, we explain how to thoroughly evaluate QA skills and how you can benefit from TestGorilla’s vast test library during hiring.

What is a QA (quality assurance) skills assessment?

A quality assurance (QA) skills assessment evaluates individuals’ knowledge of QA practices and ability to perform QA-related tasks. It tests candidates’ technical, analytical, leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills to evaluate their ability to detect and correct errors and problems.

Companies can use QA skills assessments for several job roles, but they’re commonly used when evaluating software test engineers. It will assess engineers’ knowledge of QA methods, project management and communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and more.

Overall, quality assurance skills assessments help you ensure your new hires have the skills and aptitudes necessary to deliver quality products and services to customers.

Why are QA (quality assurance) skills important?

why are QA skills important graphic

Great communication and teamwork

QA professionals must identify errors and issues through repeated testing. These individuals also need to document and explain these issues to others on the QA team so someone can resolve them. For this reason, QA professionals must have excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Due to the nature of testing, QA teams must regularly make their teammates aware of any mistakes they’ve made. Therefore, they must be able to explain issues to teammates tactfully, empathetically, and respectfully. Careful communication avoids conflict when working on tasks and ensures a more positive, productive work environment.

Active listening 

Active listening is the ability to be fully present and engaged in a conversation, intending to listen to understand rather than simply respond. This means being able to ask and gather information from open-ended questions and reflect on what was said. 

Good QA professionals have mastered the art of listening. Understanding the team’s and other stakeholders’ concerns and expectations ensures that the project meets all requirements.

Active listening creates an environment where team members can actively share ideas, input, and issues. It also ensures the QA team knows what to do with the product they’re testing. 

QA professionals must also look at a product or service’s quality from the end user’s perspective. Thus, they must understand the end user’s mindset. This is vital to ensuring a successful product or service that satisfies customers.

Companies can measure their return on investment (ROI) by actively listening to their customers to ensure that the products they release are what they want and need. Removing the guesswork prevents projects from returning to the drawing board, which saves money.

Laser-focused attention to detail

A QA professional will be involved in many calls, emails, chats, and team and customer interactions each day. To prevent oversight, these professionals must have strong attention to detail. 

They’ll be able to handle large volumes of information and discover what someone else may have missed. 

They can also recognize even the most minor errors and highlight minute nuances, helping improve products and services for stakeholders and customers. It saves you money too, as QA professionals will spot issues before they snowball into costly disasters.

Effective prioritization and time management skills

There are many moving parts in quality assurance, so knowing which tasks take precedence is essential. Failure to prioritize effectively can lead to confusion, additional work, and missed deadlines.

Effective time management ensures plenty of time to finish all tasks and double-check that they meet all requirements. Plus, QA professionals with good time management skills help keep timelines intact for the entire team and project.

Good interpersonal skills

Quality assurance is a team effort, so good interpersonal skills are necessary. Without them, an uncomfortable team dynamic could emerge, making collaborating on a project difficult.

Throughout a project’s lifecycle, QA professionals spend a lot of time with their teammates.  An exceptional QA professional can recognize and appreciate each member’s unique skill sets, qualities, and contributions.

This also guarantees that projects don’t miss expected timelines due to a tense working environment.

What skills and traits are important for QA (quality assurance) employees?

Technical skills

While quality assurance testing won’t just be software-related, a good QA professional should have strong technical skills. 

They should understand and be comfortable with technical terminology like software development life cycles (SDLC), performance testing, load testing, and regression testing. Plus, they need to know how to apply the appropriate QA method in each phase of a project’s life cycle. 

Critical thinking and problem-solving

QA professionals must think critically and creatively when facing challenges. The ability to think outside the box and develop novel approaches to problems is invaluable. 

A proficient QA professional should be able to quickly diagnose problems, weigh the pros and cons of potential solutions, and settle on the most optimal one.

Conflict and people management 

A qualified QA professional should always be prepared to lead, guiding team members to achieve optimal quality standards. Therefore, they should excel in leadership and people management.

They must effectively coordinate testing, collaborate well with others to resolve issues and reach goals, answer questions, and clearly communicate updates, issues, and expectations.

In addition, they must use strong conflict resolution strategies. They should go into conversations with the goal of reaching a resolution but knowing that the problem may not be solved immediately. 

These professionals will also be able to understand their colleagues’ perspectives and anticipate potential roadblocks in collaboration or communication. This way, they can prevent interpersonal problems and encourage team cooperation.

Analytical thinking

Analytical thinking is critical to quality assurance. QA professionals must break problems ‌down into smaller parts and carefully analyze each component to find the best solutions. 

A good QA worker can ask questions that get to the heart of a problem quickly and logically. On the flip side, they can also ask questions that dig deeper into the details.

Since no two projects are the same, QA personnel must fully grasp the essentials before diving in. Quickly and accurately analyzing and understanding a project’s parameters is vital for efficient testing and good quality assurance.

Adaptability and flexibility

One of the most important skills in quality assurance is the ability to quickly adjust to new circumstances as they arise. 

Quality assurance workers must be motivated to learn and adapt to new procedures, user input, and feedback. Those who can’t adapt won’t be able to keep up with their workload,  the rest of the team, their company, or even their industry.

In addition to being adaptable, QA professionals must be flexible. They should be willing to take on extra tasks and responsibilities to ensure smooth product rollouts and project success. 

Skills and traits tests for QA (quality assurance) candidates

QA / Test engineer test

Throughout a product’s lifecycle, a good QA employee is there to recognize, troubleshoot, and fix technical and functional issues that may arise. This ensures the product meets customer, company, and industry expectations and guidelines. 

The QA / Test engineer test from TestGorilla tests a candidate’s ability to understand and implement testing methods. It also measures their ability to apply project management knowledge to QA processes and effectively communicate across teams. 

People who pass this test know how to test software and communicate well with teams, so they ensure quality guidelines and project deadlines are met.

IT Business Analyst test

QA workers must be able to gather, manage, analyze, and document project requirements and assess and validate solutions.

TestGorilla’s IT Business Analyst test evaluates a candidate’s ability to analyze different IT scenarios, determine project requirements from stakeholders’ wants and needs, and communicate complex technical scenarios in easily understandable ways.

Candidates who pass this test demonstrate the ability to handle requirements effectively. They’ll also be able to translate and transmit information between their own team and others.

Communication Skills test

An effective QA professional must have strong communication skills to facilitate clear communication between teams and stakeholders. 

TestGorilla’s Communication Skills test assesses candidates’ ability to understand and interpret written communication, actively listen, and reiterate information clearly and concisely.

With this test, you can find candidates with good communication skills who can balance different needs to ensure everyone is satisfied. 

Time Management test

In quality assurance, time equals money. The ability to understand and adhere to deadlines is a requirement. 

TestGorilla’s Time Management test measures a candidate’s ability to prioritize items based on established timelines, due dates, importance, and impact. It also looks at the candidate’s ability to develop efficient plans to carry out their work. 

By incorporating this test into your hiring process, you can ensure your QA team is equipped with professionals who can prioritize work tasks, coordinate well with others, and minimize distractions to remain focused on objectives.

Attention to Detail test

In QA, no detail is unimportant. Something that seems minor now could have a negative impact in the future. For this reason, a good QA worker needs to possess extreme attention to detail.

TestGorilla’s Attention to Detail (textual) test is designed to determine whether or not a candidate pays attention to tiny details. Candidates will encounter scenarios that test their skills in data matching, filtering, comparison, and item consistency skills.

This test will help you find a professional who gives projects the attention to detail they deserve.

How TestGorilla can help you find the best QA (quality assurance) candidates 

Taking the time to assess candidates’ QA skills ensures that you hire candidates that can get projects done the first time and guarantee your products and services meet the necessary requirements. As a result, your team will be more productive, your customers more satisfied, and your company more profitable. 

TestGorilla’s robust test library has everything you need to assess essential QA skills and related aptitudes. Assess a candidate’s communication, attention to detail, time management skills, and more in the context of quality assurance.

With our unique combination of tests, you can be sure that you hire only the most qualified talent for your QA department.

Sign up for a free 30-minute live demo to learn more, or get started with our free plan today.


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