A systems analyst looks for ways to increase productivity and efficiency for their organization via IT solutions. A quality assurance analyst, on the other hand, is responsible for ensuring that the technology solutions work. They do this by creating and running tests to ensure the technology solutions are performing as intended. Some systems analysts also do quality assurance analyst work.
Systems QA Analyst
A systems analyst position requires a bachelor's degree in a computer related field. Many also have a graduate degree or post-graduate training in business or management. A systems analyst evaluates the existing technology and looks for areas of inefficiency. They locate and implement new technology solutions to increase productivity and efficiency. A systems quality assurance analyst performs these duties, and also creates technical tests to determine if the proposed system will work before implementing the system.
Quality Assurance Analyst
A quality assurance analyst position requires a bachelor's degree in computer science or a related field. The primary duties of a quality assurance analyst is to create tests for technology, existing and proposed, and to run those tests. They also provide high-level technological support, determining the cause of user issues and helping to resolve those issues. Many QA analysts work in teams, which requires verbal and written communication skills in addition to their technical skills.
A systems QA analyst and a QA analyst perform some of the same duties. For example, both create test cases and run tests to determine the effectiveness of technology before and after it's implemented. Both positions require a background in computer education and experience working with specialized test software. These are highly technical positions, requiring primarily advanced computer skills and logical thinking. However, both positions require at least some communication with others, including users of the technology, meaning workers in both positions need basic communication skills.
The biggest difference between a systems QA analyst and a QA analyst is that while the QA analyst does primarily testing of technology, the systems QA analyst also performs systems analyst duties, which include working with management and the finance department to determine the efficiency issues, look for new technology solutions, seek and obtain approval to purchase the technology and then engage in testing. As a result, the systems QA analysts require more people skills and more management skills than QA analysts.