Software Testers specify, develop and write test plans and test scripts, produce test cases, carry out regression testing, and use automated test software applications to test the behaviour, functionality and integrity of computer software, and document the results of tests in defect reports and related documentation.

    You can work as a Software Tester without formal qualifications if you are able to demonstrate your technical competency to employers. There are also a wide range of vendor and industry certifications available that may substitute for formal qualifications and can be highly regarded by employers. However, most workers do hold a VET or university qualification.

    Tasks

    • Tests, identifies and diagnoses functionality errors and faults in systems.
    • Programs code within established testing protocols, guidelines and quality standards to ensure systems perform to specification.
    • Performs organisational systems architecture reviews and assessments, recommending current and future strategies and directions for hardware and software.
    • Creates and reviews technical documentation, such as procedural, instructional and operational manuals or guides, technical reports and specifications, and maintenance inventory systems.

    All Software and Applications Programmers

    • $2,003 Weekly Pay
    • Very strong Future Growth
    • Lower unemployment Unemployment

    Software Testers

    • 6,900 workers Employment Size
    • Very high skill Skill level rating
    • 89% Full-Time Full-Time Share
    • 40 hours Average full-time
    • 35 years Average age
    • 44% female Gender Share

    The number of people working as Software Testers (in their main job) grew very strongly over 5 years:
    from 4,700 in 2011 to 6,900 in 2016.

    • Size: This is a small occupation.
    • Location: Software Testers work in many parts of Australia. New South Wales and Victoria have a large share of workers.
    • Industries: Most work in Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; Financial and Insurance Services; and Public Administration and Safety.
    • Full-time: Most work full-time (89%, much higher than the average of 66%).
    • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 40 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
    • Age: The average age is 35 years (compared to the average of 40 years).
    • Gender: 44% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

    Employment Outlook

    Number of Workers

    No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

    Weekly Earnings

    Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

    No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

    Main Industries

    Main Employing Industries (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
    Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
    Professional, Scientific and Technical Services48.3
    Financial and Insurance Services18.0
    Public Administration and Safety8.8
    Information Media and Telecommunications5.2
    Other Industries19.7

    States and Territories

    • NSW

    • VIC

    • QLD

    • SA

    • TAS

    • NT

    • ACT

    Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    StateSoftware TestersAll Jobs Average
    NSW36.531.6
    VIC35.325.6
    QLD12.020.0
    SA4.17.0
    WA5.810.8
    TAS0.42.0
    NT0.01.0
    ACT5.81.9

    Age Profile

    Age Profile (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    Age BracketSoftware TestersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    15-190.4-5.05.0
    20-242.7-9.39.3
    25-3442.8-22.922.9
    35-4434.8-22.022.0
    45-5412.9-21.621.6
    55-594.0-9.09.0
    60-641.7-6.06.0
    65 and Over0.7-4.24.2

    Education Level

    Highest Level of Education (% Share)

    Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
    Type of QualificationSoftware TestersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate27.9-10.110.1
    Bachelor degree50.8-21.821.8
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma6.9-11.611.6
    Certificate III/IV3.2-21.121.1
    Year 129.2-18.118.1
    Year 110.9-4.84.8
    Year 10 and below1.2-12.512.5

    You can work as a Software Tester without formal qualifications if you are able to demonstrate your technical competency to employers. There are also a wide range of vendor and industry certifications available that may substitute for formal qualifications and can be highly regarded by employers. However, most workers do hold a VET or university qualification.

    Membership with information technology associations or peak bodies may be useful.

    Checks, licences and tickets

    You may need:

    • additional IT certifications offered by peak bodies, industry associations and vendors

    Thinking about study or training?

    Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

    • Search and compare thousands of higher education courses, and their entry requirements from different institutions across Australia at Course Seeker website.
    • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
    • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
    • You might be interested in Information and Communications Technology VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

    Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

    Useful links and resources


    The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

    Employers look for Software and Applications Programmers who can communicate clearly, work well in a team and have strong computer skills.

    Filter Skills & Knowledge

    Knowledge

    These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

    1. Computers and electronics

      76% Skill level

      Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    2. English language

      61% Skill level

      English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    3. Mathematics

      53% Skill level

      Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

    4. Engineering and technology

      52% Skill level

      Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.

    5. Education and training

      48% Skill level

      Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

    Occupational Information Network
    O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
    The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 15-1199.01 - Software Quality Assurance Engineers and Testers.

    Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

    Filter Work Environment

    Demands

    The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

    1. Electronic mail

      97% Important

      Use electronic mail.

    2. Spend time sitting

      95% Important

      Spend time sitting at work.

    3. Face-to-face discussions

      95% Important

      Talk with people face-to-face.

    4. Teamwork

      91% Important

      Work with people in a group or team.

    5. Being exact or accurate

      87% Important

      Be very exact or highly accurate.

    Occupational Information Network
    O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
    The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 15-1199.01 - Software Quality Assurance Engineers and Testers.

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