Software Developer Engineer in Test Versus QA Engineers: The Ultimate Guide

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Software Developer Engineer in Test Versus QA Engineers: The Ultimate Guide

Globally, the developer population continues to rise ꟷ reaching a total of 24.5 million with a 500,000 growth only in 2020, as published by the EDC Worldwide Developer Population and Demographics Study.

Ensuring good quality, within the software development sphere, is crucial in today's digitized world and contributes largely to the success of this industry.

Globally, the developer population continues to rise ꟷ reaching a total of 24.5 million with a 500,000 growth only in 2020, as published by the EDC Worldwide Developer Population and Demographics Study.

Yes, software development jobs are bouncing back, but with more power!

The technological industries consider testing apps as more important than program testing.

This has led organisations to hunt for the best possible talents when it comes to writing codes and checking them for quality.

Software development engineers in test (SDET) and QA automation engineers are the two variety of skilled professionals who are adept in the arena of digital tools and languages.

If you are curious about the major differences between the work-life of Software Developer Engineers in Test and QA engineers, then continue reading this blog to find out the factors that distinguish them from each other.

Understanding Software Developer Engineers in Test (SDET)and QA profiles

Software developer engineers in test and QA engineers both stand on the first line of testing software methodologies that have changed over time.

In this article, we discuss the difference between the positions of SDETs and a QAs.

What is SDETs and what does it stand for?

A software development engineer in test is referred to as an SDET, which is an amalgamation of a test engineer and a developer role.

Holding the title of an SDET primarily involves working on projects starting from the planning stage, then moving on to assist in the automation of the testing process.

What is QA engineering?

Quality assurance engineering includes a diverse range of software processes including bug reporting, data management, testing environments and troubleshooting.

Therefore, queue engineers are expected to be well versed with the various software testing processes and must possess complete knowledge of the associated methodologies.

Core differences between SDETs and QA engineer

The role of a quality assurance engineer and a software development engineer in test has traditionally revolved around testing activities, leaving most of us confused and wondering whether these are the same roles.

We are here to share with you some points of differentiation that will help you gain a better understanding of these two unique software-related positions.

1. Work activities

Although the term SDETs is commonly used interchangeably with an automated tester, the main distinction lies between the tasks performed by both.

While SDETs spend their crucial time writing unit tests, reviewing the code itself and approaching the test outcome with a programmer’s mindset, QA engineers do not get involved in the test regulation process until the development is done.

2. Skills possessed

A software development engineering test is an expert at implementing various programming languages and proficient at translating customer requirements in two test scenarios.

In contrast,  QA software engineers are required to be proficient at using test tools, developing and running test cases, as well as tracking bugs.

3. Testing mechanism used

SDETs ensure that all components are functioning as per specifications, with the code being reliable and robust.

QA engineers, on the other hand, perform black-box testing and are only concerned about each component's functionality.

4. Roles and responsibilities of SDETs vs QA engineers

The difference between SDETs and QA engineers is more than just the title and general duties they perform each day, rather they are held accountable for plenty of matters that make them qualified for each individual role.

What does software development engineering in tests do?

Software development engineers in test, also known as software design engineers in test, are required to participate in the development of the application and testing of the software developed.

Let’s look into some of the tasks related to developing high-performance code that the SDETs are required to perform every day.

  • Creating database concepts to implement user interfaces when participating in product and data design.
  • Automating the acceptance test by leveraging coding skills, to level up its function with the acceptance rate.
  • Working with the product development team and product manager to advocate for the customers on how to go about using the product.
  • As software testers, they are required to focus on the steps related to the software development cycle, preparing test cases and executing them to ensure a high-quality software product release.

What does a QA engineer do?

A QA engineer is a technical engineer who functions as a manual tester for software companies to build the features and framework of the software itself.

Some of the basic accountabilities of being a QA software engineer are as follows:

  • Allocating tests to various automation engineers specializing in testing.
  • Planning the test process by making test budget and testing schedule decisions.
  • Presenting reports to the development team, summarizing the test results [scenarios and cases].
  • Working closely with the development team to ensure that the testing process is on track.
  • Reviewing the test protocols and outcomes to ensure they are in line with the customer requirements.

How to become an SDET or QA engineer?

Becoming a software development engineer or tester requires a lot of dedication for which you will have to strive to improve your programming skills and acquire an eye for minute details.

You must also be empathetic towards others as such roles require you to collaborate with various teams, for the sake of automating and evaluating every scenario.

We would also suggest that you update your knowledge of various test tools by pursuing a professional course in the field of software development.

Which is a more important career path?

With the advent of automation in testing, recruiters are now inclining towards hiring more SDETs than QA engineers.

Not to forget that SDETs are required to possess superior skill sets to ensure the product received by a client is of high quality, reliable, scalable and bug-free.

As a consequence, SDETs are known to make more money than QA testers because of their versatile professional exposure.

If you want to become involved with global tech giants such as Google or Apple, then you must check out the Software Quality Assurance Engineering with Practicum course offered by the Canadian College of Technology and Business (CCTB).

Signing up for this course will take you a step closer to understanding end-user software requirements and build a solid grounding for the domain knowledge that potential employers find appealing to their candidates.

Log on to our website to learn more!

23 July, 2021

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