What is the future for QA Analysts in Canada?

I wanted to generate some thought on how the QA role is changing in Canada.

The largest fix costs associated with QA by far is that of labour. Let’s look at some average QA analyst salaries using Salary.com Canadian median numbers to avoid debate.

Level 1 QA Analyst 0-2 years experience C$53,463 /year C$26 /hour
Level 2 QA Analyst 2-4 years C$61,839 /year. C$30 /hour
Level 3 QA Analyst 5+ years C$75,585 /year C$36 /hour
QA Manager 8+ years C$93,642 /year C$45 /hour
QA Director 12+ years C$107,355 /year C$52 /hour

Finding the right balance and mix of staff, seniority, skill set, to work load is a difficult endeavour. Do you set aside individuals to do client vs. server, performance vs. functionality, regression vs. pre-production etc.

For simplicity let’s say Acme Inc has 10 QA staff all level 2 QA Analysts and one QA director.  Their application has 4 releases a year.  The calculation for wages expense would be 10 employees x C$61,839 wage = C$618,390 + C$107,355 for the director = C$725,745 excluding additional costs associated with an employee like office, equipment, management overhead etc. That’s C$181,436.25 a release. It’s not surprising that management focus is often on ways to reduce this amount.  Attempts at cutting the costs of labour, usually comes in the a few forms

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