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Erin's Yearly Testing Round-Up 2019

Written by Erin Donnelly
18/12/19 - 15:00

Welcome to the first of my annual testing round-up of the year. It might need a new name because that is a mouthful.

Hopefully, it’ll be fairly short and at least mildly interesting.

You might have a huge testing team, you might have no dedicated Testers, but testing needs to be done regardless, so read on!

The test market in 2019

We all know that automated testing is the big thing at the moment (and has been for a fair while now), and it seems like there is no signs of this stopping.

To give you some stats – 68% of the roles that I have helped clients across Scotland with, have had an element of automation testing involved. This is across contract and permanent, by the way. (Although, statistically, for me at least, it is more likely that a contract role is looking for someone with purely manual testing skills). 

Manual testing is the foundation, of course, but more and more companies are looking to bring in Testers with some skills in automated testing, to either create an automation testing function from scratch, or to just add to the existing team.

There is a problem with the market at the moment – lots of clients and companies want people with pre-existing automation testing skills, but there are plenty really intelligent people out there that are keen to develop these skills. If you can, consider bringing on someone who you can train up. It will increase employee happiness and loyalty, but more importantly get all of these fantastic candidates out of the Catch 22 they’ve been stuck in. 


The above has impact on salary, but it’s no secret that salaries across tech in Scotland have been steadily rising.

It differs from city to city, but I’ve listed some average salaries below:

  • Test Analyst – £25,000 - £37,000 (generic title, depends massively on experience)
  • Senior Test Analyst - £35,000 - £40,000
  • Test Lead - £37,000 - £47,000 (depends on company size, can be higher)
  • Test Manager - £50,000 +
  • Automation Tester - £40,000 - £45,000 (could be less, could be more)
  • Automation Tester (not a manager, but setting up from scratch) - £45,000 - £52,000

It’s useful to remember that job titles are arbitrary, and you could be a Test Analyst on £60,000 for example, but the salaries listed are fairly average across the board. Depending on company size as well, these can differ massively.

If you are ever looking for salary advice, please do ask, happy to provide more in-depth stats, and figures!

Ministry of Testing Edinburgh

If you haven’t heard of these guys, you should definitely get them checked out ASAP. They have meet-ups all over the country, and closer to home in Edinburgh and Glasgow.

I’m quite excited to be able to say that I’ve come on board as an organiser and volunteer for the Edinburgh meet-ups and can’t wait to announce all the cool stuff we’ve got planned for 2020.

What we really want to encourage is people across the technical industry (and non-technical!) to get involved, not just Testers. We also have some great speakers lined up, but we want to make it a place where anybody can feel confident to do a lightening talk, and build their public speaking skills.

So, to round this section off, if you haven’t heard of Ministry of Testing, and want to get involved, whether it’s coming along for the first time, volunteering, promoting it to the team, let me know!


I could go on forever, but I have to stop somewhere. What I’m keen to know, or guess at is where 2020 will take us? Will there be fewer automation roles or more? Will there be an increasing DevOps cross-over? Will salaries continue to rise?

What do you think? 

As always, if you are thinking about hiring across testing, and need a hand, give me a shout! If you aren’t looking for agency help but you do want to chat through salary or the market in general, please do reach out or call 0131 510 1500, I’m always happy to help!

TL:DR The test market in Scotland is thriving, and it looks like automation testing roles are the main focus, but this focus means some great candidates are missing out on new roles. Salaries are continuing to rise. I’m now involved with the Ministry of Test Edinburgh as an organiser and volunteer, and we are keen to get more people involved and coming along!

#tester #testing #technologyrecruitment