QA Tester Hourly Rate: Know How Much It Costs to Hire QA

QA rate is an intricate question. It depends on the numerous aspects: certification of a QA specialist, the amount of work, the marketplace this QA is on, as well as the project’s deadline. A QA’s location plays a huge role in their salaries. Hiring in the US or EU if you want to have this person in-house can be expensive. However, hiring in Eastern Europe is cheaper. 

Today, qualified specialists are in great demand and are valued in the team, so hiring them for a short time is a challenge. It may happen that you need 20-50 specialists, and hiring such a number of people in a short time can turn into a failure. In this case, QA outsourcing agencies can be considered. 

In this article, we will talk about in-house and outsourced QA specialists, and discuss QA’s hourly rate.

Outsourcing vs. In-house testing

Outsourced QA solutions are cheaper than employing in-house QA engineers. Nonetheless, not everyone knows exactly how cheap it may be and why. Imagine you have a lot of code files that you need to test. The approximated time for testing is 100 hours and the variety of QA specialists you plan to associate with this procedure is 3 engineers. Take the typical per hour rates of the in-house staff member and that of an engineer from Eastern Europe. Consider tax obligations, perks, and right here’s what you get:

Cost comparison of in-house QA and outsourced QA

Criteria In-house QA Outsourced QA
Number of programmers 3 3
Man hours needed 100 100
Middle QA hourly rate $30 $10
Taxes, bonuses, training +30% to the salary
Estimated testing cost $12k minimum $3k 

The distinction in expenses is not just impressive, however, it makes clear why big companies often tend to outsource huge amounts of data for Quality Assurance. Now, let’s continue with some more numbers.

QA Rates Around the World

Top-notch QA specialists are thought to set you back a great deal. In fact, Glassdoor claims the average Quality Assurance Manager earns $70-100k yearly, while QA specialists at such businesses as IBM, Amazon, and Sapient earn even more than that. Naturally, they do, in Silicon Valley. What about other cities and countries? To dig deeper into the subject, we evaluated QA wages of the major technology centers around the globe. 


In American Express as well as Apple, the Quality Assurance engineer’s wage is approximately $100k yearly, which is $52 per hour. Statistics show various other firms pay staff members with the very same degree of competence a bit less. Nonetheless, QA services in the USA are still believed to be ones of the most pricey worldwide alongside the United Kingdom and Australia.

Let’s see how the experience aspect affects your expenses on QA salaries:

  • Junior QA engineers (from 0 to 5 years of experience) earn 8% lower than the nationwide average base salary in the USA
  • Middle QA specialists (from 5 to 10 years) gain 9% higher
  • Senior QA specialists (from 10 to 20 years) earn 14% greater
  • Late-career (more than 20 years) QA specialist income is 24% greater

It’s rather expected that 44% of testers have 1-4 years of work experience in QA engineering, while 24% have 5 to 9 years. This means firms need to pay a greater wage to that 24% of highly experienced testers.

QA engineers salary


United Kingdom

Talking about the UK, below is exactly how the experience influences QA testing expenses:

  • Junior QA engineers (from 0 to 5 years of experience) gain 7% less than the average base salary in the UK
  • Middle QA engineers (from 5 to 10 years) make 7% higher
  • Senior QA engineers (from 10 to 20 years) gain 10% greater
  • Late-career QA specialists (more than 20 years) make 15% greater

The pattern nearly repeats the USA numbers: 45% of QA testers have 1-4 years of experience in testing, while 25% have 5-9 years of experience

Amazon’s Quality Assurance specialists make $96k a year on average which is almost ₤70k. This number varies from the UK’s national average QA salary, which suggests the occupation path can be different for each and every specialist independently. It likewise means that the QA task price estimate will entirely depend upon the work experience of your employees. Here is the average QA engineer’s salary in the UK:


Eastern Europe

Eastern Europe, meaning the largest technology centers such as Poland and Ukraine, is well-known for such a rare combination as top quality and affordable price. Numerous sectors outsource software testing, successfully satisfying their organization’s needs.

The number of almost 79% of QA engineers having from 1 to 4 years of experience in software testing proves the growing appeal of this career amongst young people in Eastern Europe. Additionally, 21% have from 5 to 9 years of work experience which is a variety of competent engineers. If you recall in the table above, the middle QA specialist gets about 10$ per hour, so you can get a pretty vivid picture of your savings.

For instance, technology jobs in Ukraine are as much popular amongst women as they are amongst men. Actually, Quality Assurance specifically employs a lot more women. To add some more info, we found out that 86% of women and 14% of men are employed as QA engineers. Getting rid of an obsolete stereotype that women do not work or succeed in IT, Eastern European firms are globally known for the excellent quality in QA.

Now let’s look at the average QA engineer salary in Ukraine. 


As we can see, the average annual salary of a tester in Ukraine is around $15k and the average hourly rate is $7.36.


About 70% of QA engineers in India have only 1 to 4 years of work experience, while 21% have from 5 to 9 years. An interesting observation is that almost 5% of all QA specialists in Asia have less than 1 year of work experience. A fairly large variety of individuals has 1-4 years of experience in software testing, which implies this specialization is rather brand-new to India and is just starting to get popular.

India shocks with an immense difference in wages depending upon the number of years of testing experience individuals get:

  • Junior (from 0 to 5 years of experience) QA tester price is 10% less than the national average tester salary
  • Middle QA experts (from 5 to 10 years) earn 51% greater
  • Senior QA professionals (from 10 to 20 years) earn 123% higher


The annual salary of an average Indian QA specialist is about $11k, meaning they earn $5.29 an hour.

To sum up

Whether you decide to hire an in-house QA engineer or outsource, you should always explore the foreign market before choosing the company or a person to work with. 

So now, if you need to test your software application, you will know how much it costs and what the rates of QA depend on, so you can make an informed decision on where to hire a QA tester.

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