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Agile software development morphs QA Jobs

The recession has changed a lot of things about IT, particularly in the demand for Quality Assurance (QA) professionals who have an encyclopedic-like range of skills. This is largely due to the increasing adoption of agile software development which has gained ground during the recession as companies look to speed up software development.

Agile software development methods promise a faster development time, in part, because they rely less on documentation and more on collaboration and multiple incremental iterations.

Companies are looking for QA professionals with a range of skills and an ability to look at software quality from multiple angles and disciplines. A survey found that in North America and Europe about 60% of those organizations are using agile development methods. Agile development methods were credited with cost savings by 14% of the respondents, while 26% said agile development had improved software quality. But 37% of the users cited time-to-market as the leading improvement from the development method.

Joel Singh, director of quality assurance at Comcast Corp. in Philadelphia, said he’s in “100% agreement” with the report’s conclusions that the role for QA professionals has changed. The skills now needed include an understanding of data quality; networking protocols; databases; and some development knowledge

Another interesting finding dealt with cloud adoption. Almost half of respondents said the top reason their companies are deploying into the cloud is for cost reduction; 33% cited increased agility.

[Photo courtesy of agilites.]