How much does it cost to hire a quality assurance team?

Posted on : by : Jimmy Dean

How much does it cost to hire a Quality Assurance (QA) team? Is it a necessary function or just a luxury? Can your business afford to onboard an in-house QA team or just outsource it? The cost of maintaining high-level product and service standards is an essential consideration for every business. However, the cost elements surrounding hiring a quality assurance team can be quite multifaceted and difficult to comprehend.

The main challenge lies in understanding the actual cost of building a strong QA team. According to a report by Systems Sciences Institute at IBM, the cost of fixing a software error after product release was four to five times as much than if it’s uncovered during the design phase, and up to 100 times more than if it’s identified in the maintenance phase. Likewise, in a survey by the Department of Trade and Industry, software defects cost the world economy approximately $59 billion per annum. Therefore, investing in a strong quality assurance team can save businesses from these lost revenues. It’s clear that hiring a quality assurance team presents a cost-benefit scenario, where the initial expenses can be balanced out by future savings stemming from avoiding product failures.

In this article You will learn about the nuanced details of the cost elements associated with hiring a QA team. The information will cover the subject broadly, ranging from overhead costs related to team setup and management, salaries and benefits, to the more subtle costs related to ramp-up time and hidden inefficiencies. This comprehensive guide will also shed light on the comparative costs of in-house QA teams versus outsourcing to specialized agencies.

In addition, this article will provide valuable insights about how investing in a quality assurance team can eventually contribute to a business’s bottom line. Going beyond cost aspects, the article will explore how QA teams potentially drive customer satisfaction, brand reputation, and overall business performance. Ultimately, this guide aims to assist businesses make informed decisions about investing in quality assurance.

How much does it cost to hire a quality assurance team?

Definitions and Costs Associated with Hiring a Quality Assurance Team

Quality Assurance Team is a group of professionals who monitor and improve the quality of products or services ensuring they meet set standards. Their tasks may involve, but not limited to, organizing system audits, managing defects, conducting tests, and creating quality reports. The cost of hiring a quality assurance team can vary significantly, based on factors such as the size, complexity of the project, and the expertise required. Rates can range from $30 to $90/hour for QA engineers. Large organizations might spend thousands to millions annually, while small businesses may need a smaller, less-costly team.

Investing in Certainty: The Real Cost of Hiring a Quality Assurance Team

Given the significance of high-quality software in today’s digital landscape, the role of a quality assurance team is more critical than ever before. However, hiring a qualified QA team is not a budget-friendly endeavor. The cost of hiring a quality assurance team can vary widely, typically ranging from $5000 to $25000 per month, depending on the scale of work, experience required, duration of the project, and the nature of the testing procedures. The financial implications extend beyond just wages and often include training costs, infrastructure, tools, and more.

Investment Breakdown of Hiring a QA Team

Primarily, the size and experience level of the team influence the cost to a large extent. Hiring a team of experienced QA professionals comes at a higher cost than hiring a team composed of less experienced individuals or fresh graduates. Experience level often determines expertise, efficiency, and the quality of output, thereby justifying the high cost.

Secondly, the cost of hiring also hinges majorly on whether the team is in-house or outsourced. In-house QA teams incur costs, like infrastructure and ongoing training and development. On the other hand, outsourcing to a QA team brings its operational benefits and cost-efficiency. However, this may come at the expense of overall control and quality, as you will be dependent on an external service provider large and large, determining the project timelines.

Additional Costs to Consider

Besides salaries and outsourcing costs, hiring a QA team also involves other less obvious but significant costs. For instance, the company is likely to incur substantial expenses for the tools and hardware required for extensive testing procedures.

  • Software Testing Tools Cost: Such tools can range from $10 per user per month for basic tools to $15000 per year for highly advanced and automated testing tools.
  • Hardware Cost: If your software requires to be tested on specific devices or has hardware dependencies, preparing for these tests could incur more costs. This is especially relevant for mobile app testing, cross-platform application testing, and more.
  • Lastly, let’s not forget the training and development costs. New hires require an onboarding process where they learn about company-specific applications and procedures, which is both a time and resource-consuming process. Moreover, constant technological advancements necessitate the need for continuous training and development to ensure the team stays updated with the latest trends and technologies. Hence, it’s safe to say that while the striking numbers are the salaries or outsourcing costs, the real cost of hiring a quality assurance team is indeed many-faceted and runs much deeper than the apparent figures.

    Decoding the Budget: Factors Determining the Cost of a Quality Assurance Team

    Is Your Budget Truly Reflecting the Cost Involved?

    Ever wondered why despite having a seemingly solid financial plan, you still fall short of resources when hiring a quality assurance team? The reason is there are several behind-the-scenes expenses that generally aren’t considered. Primarily, it is not just the salaries of the QA professionals. You should also account for a number of unanticipated costs including onboarding, training, and even the high potential of employee turnover, which not only disrupts the workflow but also entails an additional hiring process.

    Apart from their pay, these expert teams need regular training to stay abreast of new technologies and methodologies. Training costs can skyrocket depending on the technical skills required for the job. Additionally, onboarding new employees involves costs regarding time, resources, and management personnel. This hidden expenditure can go unnoticed but certainly takes a toll on overall budget allocation.

    The Challenges in Budgeting

    Principally, underestimating the total costs leads to budgetary challenges. With the failure of foresight, the initially agreed-upon budget may tick all boxes on paper, but when put into practice, it becomes woefully inadequate. Consider the costs of tools and infrastructure. From purchasing software licenses to procuring necessary hardware, the subtleties of these costs are often overlooked.

    Furthermore, the human aspect, that is, the comfort and requirement of the workforce must be kept in mind when planning the budget. Established employees might leave the organization, leading to the costs of hiring new employees in their stead and training them, thereby adding to the unanticipated expenses not accounted for in the budget.

    Best Practices to Unveil Hidden Costs

    To overcome such monetary issues, companies have to be proactive and precise about their budgeting strategy. One of the ideal ways is to consider worst-case scenarios in terms of turnover rates, training costs, software updates, and team expansions. Also, proactive budgeting should account for the costs of tools, infrastructure investments, and one-time purchases of necessary software licenses.

    In addition, adopting continuous learning and upskilling culture helps companies save on costs in the long run. This approach enables them to keep their teams updated with the technological front without having to hire new professionals or opt for separate extensive training. It also builds employee loyalty, reducing turnover rates.

    Moreover, creating profiles for each role with detailed responsibilities and required skills helps estimate the associated costs better. Before embarking on the hiring journey, be aware of the market rates, negotiation possibilities, and the potential return of investment from the candidates. Following these best practices will ensure a comprehensive budget that covers all the nuances of hiring a quality assurance team.

    Getting Your Money’s Worth: The ROI of Hiring a Quality Assurance Team

    Is Your Budget Hindering Quality Achievements?

    A thought-provoking question that many decision-makers grapple with when contemplating the recruitment of a quality assurance (QA) team is: How expensive is it really going to be? The financial concern is undoubtedly valid. The price tag associated with building a competent QA team can largely vary, with figures starting from a few thousand dollars per month and skyrocketing up to hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. These numbers are predominantly dictated by the size of your team, their experience level, and the complexity of the product or service being tested.

    The Catch-22 Situation: Quality or Cost Savings?

    Here is the primary crux: often, companies find themselves caught in a contradiction while pursuing high-quality services and trying to minimize costs at the same time. On the one hand, they have a budget to adhere to, which tempts them to hire less experienced professionals at a lower cost. On the other hand, they’re aware that such a compromise might tarnish the quality of their product or service. It’s crucial to highlight that inadequate quality assurance can result in severe consequences, including reputational harm, loss of customers, and lower profits. Thus, it becomes a strategic decision to decide the balance between the budget for the QA team and the quality of testing they’d provide.

    Striking the Perfect Balance: Real-world Cases worth Emulating

    Although daunting, balancing budget and quality is not unachievable. Some companies have walked this tightrope successfully. Consider the case of Slack, a globally recognized business communication platform. Instead of inflating its budget to afford a costly, in-house QA team, the company adopted a distributed testing approach. It hired QA professionals from all over the world, ensuring a high level of testing quality without overspending their budget. Similarly, Amazon’s renowned 2-pizza team concept, where every team should be small enough to be fed with two pizzas, has worked wonders. It champions the idea of hiring a small, exceptionally talented QA team that can multitask, thus providing quality testing without draining resources. These successful companies artfully illustrate that it’s possible to maintain quality without spending excessively on QA, provided that strategic, innovative approaches are adopted.


    How would your business perform if you had an exceptional quality assurance team on board? The cost of hiring such a team may vary, but the long-term benefits and improvements are, undoubtedly, an investment worth making. By employing professional QA teams, organizations can ensure that their products and services meet high standards. This can ultimately lead to increased customer satisfaction, stronger business reputation, and a significant boost in your company’s bottom line.

    Remember, our blog is regularly updated with the latest insights on business, technology, and quality assurance practices. We invite you to follow us for a steady stream of valuable tips and strategies that can help you take your business to the next level. Our expert writers delve into a range of topics, providing comprehensive analysis and actionable tips that you can implement within your own business or work.

    In closing, we would like to mention that we are also gearing up for a brand-new series of posts that will provide a deep dive into the world of quality assurance. Keep an eye out for these insightful articles and be sure to stay tuned for more. Ultimately, the decision to invest in a superb QA team could be the one factor that propels your business towards unprecedented success.


    1. What is the average cost of hiring a quality assurance team?

    The cost to hire a quality assurance (QA) team significantly varies depending on a range of factors such as their experience levels, the complexity of the project, and the duration of the project. However, on average, the rates can typically range from $30 to $150 per hour per QA team member.

    2. What factors influence the cost of hiring a quality assurance team?

    Several factors influence the cost of hiring a QA team. These include the size of your project, the complexity level, the QA team’s experience, and whether the team is domestically or internationally based.

    3. Is it more cost-effective to hire a full-time or part-time quality assurance team?

    The cost-effectiveness of hiring a full-time or part-time QA team depends on the size and duration of the project. For smaller, short-term projects, a part-time trend might be more cost-effective, while larger, long-term projects would typically benefit from a full-time team.

    4. Can the cost of a quality assurance team be negotiated?

    Yes, the cost of hiring a QA team is sometimes negotiable. The negotiation usually depends on factors like the duration of the project, the reliability of a long-term partnership, and the team’s workload capacity.

    5. How do the costs of hiring an internal vs. an outsourced quality assurance team compare?

    An internal QA team often entails substantial costs, including salaries, benefits, training, and office space maintenance. While rates for outsourced teams may initially be higher, outsourcing could be more cost-effective long-term by eliminating overhead costs.