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Software Quality Assurance Engineer… Happiest job?!? (Peak Performance)

On March 27, 2012, in Syndicated, by Association for Software Testing
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If you haven’t seen this article, you want to read it:

http://finance.yahoo.com/blogs/secrets-toyour-success/happiest-jobs-america-173044519.html

About half way down it says:

The happiest job of all isn’t kindergarten teacher or dentist. It’s software quality assurance engineer. Professionals with this job title are typically involved in the entire software development process to ensure the quality of the final product. This can include processes such as requirements gathering and documentation, source code control, code review, change management, configuration management, release management, and the actual testing of the software, explains Matt Miller, chief technology officer at CareerBliss.

With an index score of 4.24, software quality assurance engineers said they are more than satisfied with the people they work with and the company they work for. They’re also fairly content with their daily tasks and bosses.

These professionals “typically make between $85,000 and $100,000 a year in salary and are the gatekeepers for releasing high quality software products,” Miller says. Organizations generally will not allow software to be released until it has been fully tested and approved by their software quality assurance group, he adds.

So I have a bunch of comments:

  1. I guess I don’t know what a “Software Quality Assurance Engineer” is — or this Matt Miler guy doesn’t. 
  2. *If* anyone “ensures the quality of the final product” in software, it’s a PM or higher.
  3. I don’t think I’ve met anyone with that title who smiled and told me how much they love their job.
  4. I’m certain I’ve never met someone with that title that makes that much money. 
  5. I think I’d rather shoot myself in the head than have those tasks… even at such a generous salary.

I could go on, but I’ll stop.  I want to see these questions, & I want to know the demographics of the people surveyed, & I want to see the titles actually reported by respondents that got rolled up under “Software Quality Assurance Engineer.” I’d also like to have a word or 73 with this Matt Miller dude… CTO to CTO, ’cause lets face it, we all know that testers wouldn’t be caught dead bragging about how *happy* their job makes them, or how *satisfying* it is. Testers tend to love the act of testing, but not their jobs, or their bosses, or their companies — and if this ain’t referring to testers, I wanna know why these process people are apparently so happy about being forced to do the actual testing on top of their “real” job.

Feel free to share your thoughts, but this strikes me as “not *even* wrong” to a degree that I can’t seem to even reverse-engineer a single measurement dysfunction that could account for all the ways in which this article strikes me as “just not right”.

 

Scott Barber
Chief Technologist, PerfTestPlus, Inc.
Director, Computer Measurement Group
About.me

Co-Author, Performance Testing Guidance for Web Applications
Author, Web Load Testing for Dummies
Contributing Author, Beautiful Testing, and How To Reduce the Cost of Testing

“If you can see it in your mind…
     you will find it in your life.”

 

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