Quality is one of the most important characteristics of a product, as well as the performance of the staff. No matter how well known a company is and what incredibly expensive source materials it may use to develop its product, once the quality of the goods is deplorable, a firm is doomed. Hence the need from the person checking the efficacy of the services and products offered by the company arises. Perhaps, one of the most overlooked and the most important members of the staff, a quality assistant is the cog without which the corporate mechanism ill fall apart immediately.
A seemingly simple concept, quality assurance is rather hard to define. According to the existing definition, quality assurance is “being a responsibility of the corporate and program management alone” (Hedeman, Heemst and Fredriksz 46). In other words, quality assurance is taking responsibility for the functioning of a particular product, unit, or service. Also, quality assurance involves the necessity to define or select standards for particular products (York 70). Thus, it can be assumed that quality assurance is the result of applying responsibility related qualities to practice to provide the target customer with the services or products of the finest quality.
Judging by the definition mentioned above of the job in question, the position of a quality assurance team member can be described as a very demanding one that can, nevertheless, bring certain job satisfaction. While the idea of constantly keeping an eye on the tiniest details is tiring, the average salary and benefits, which come together with this position, may compensate for the tedium and the necessity to concentrate all the time. For instance, according to the data provided by the Salary.com, a quality assurance director’s annual salary makes $121,131 on average (Salary.com para. 1). It should be noted, though, that the employers’ expectations are also rather high, seeing how a Bachelor or a Master’s degree and at least three years of experience are required in most cases (Salary.com para. 1).
Hence, the skills that a quality assurance team member must possess are defined by the specifics of the job to a considerable degree. For instance, when it comes to personal qualities, such character traits as patience and attentiveness are considered the top [priority. Also, it is important that a quality assurance team member should have strong stamina and be able to spot the inconsistencies and flaws of the product even after working for several hours running. In terms of professionalism, a quality assurance specialist must be able to maximize profitability, monitoring performance, analyzing customers’ demands and coming up with the solutions that will meet these demands, etc. (Quality Assurance Manager: Job Description para. 1).
Naturally, a quality assistant is not the only important member of the staff; every employee is valued equally in a company with proper corporate culture. However, the importance of a quality assistant must not be underrated, since it is the QA, who makes sure that the company has a perfect image and produces flawless goods. Though clearly very demanding and extremely tense, the job of a quality assistant is rewarding and, therefore, worth applying for. Having or training such qualities as patience, scrutiny, and attention to details, one will be able to become a perfect member of the quality assurance team.
Hedeman, Bert, Gabor Vis van Heemst and Hans Fredriksz. Project Management Based on PRINCE2 2009. Amersfoort, NL: Van Halen Publishing, 2010. Print.
Quality Assurance Manager: Job Description n. d. Web.
Salary.com. Quality Assurance Director 2014. Web.
York, Kenneth M. Applied Human Resource Management: Strategic Issues and Experiential Exercises. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, 2010. Print.