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Top 11 QA Director Certifications

This article provides an overview of the most popular certifications for Quality Assurance Directors.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 18 min read

Certifications for a QA Director are important in the job market because they demonstrate a high level of knowledge and expertise in Quality Assurance. Certifications provide employers with proof that the individual has taken initiative to learn and develop their skills, as well as having specialized knowledge of QA processes and tools. Additionally, certifications can help to prove that an individual is capable of managing quality assurance programs and testing efforts efficiently. Certifications also help potential employers to identify qualified candidates quickly, saving them time and money in the hiring process.

The purpose of this article is to review the top certifications for QA Directors and explain how they can help advance a QA Director's career.

What are QA Director Certifications?

QA Director Certification is a professional certification program designed to equip quality assurance (QA) professionals with the skills and knowledge needed to lead successful QA teams. The certification focuses on both technical and managerial topics, such as project management, software development life cycles, process improvement, and risk management. It is designed for those in leadership roles in the field of quality assurance who are responsible for setting up and managing successful QA departments.

The certification provides a comprehensive overview of best practices in the area of quality assurance, as well as an understanding of how to effectively manage a QA team. It also helps individuals develop their own personal skills in areas such as communication, problem solving, decision making and coaching. With this certification, individuals can become more effective leaders who understand how to get the most out of their QA teams. It also helps them stay up-to-date on industry developments and trends that could impact their work.

Overall, the QA Director Certification can help individuals increase their value to an organization by equipping them with the necessary skills to lead successful teams and keep abreast of changes in the field of quality assurance. This can help them take on more responsibility within their organization and advance their career paths.

Pro Tip: When seeking a QA Director Certification, make sure to research the qualifications of the certifying organization. Look for organizations that have a track record of providing comprehensive certification programs and are well-respected in the industry. Make sure to check their policies and procedures for awarding certification and find out if they have any additional resources available to help you become certified.

Related: What does a QA Director do?

Top 11 QA Director Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to QA Directors today.

1. Certified Software Quality Analyst (CSQA)

Certified Software Quality Analyst (CSQA) is a certification program offered by the American Society for Quality (ASQ). It is designed to recognize professionals who are knowledgeable and experienced in software quality assurance practices. The CSQA certification requires that applicants demonstrate their understanding of software quality assurance principles, processes, techniques, and tools.

To become a Certified Software Quality Analyst, applicants must have at least three years of work experience in software quality assurance and pass an exam administered by ASQ. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions covering topics such as software development life cycle models, software testing methods, defect management processes, and quality assurance metrics. Applicants must also complete a project demonstrating their ability to apply the concepts they have learned during the course of the exam.

The cost for taking the CSQA exam varies depending on whether you are an ASQ member or non-member. For members, it costs $399 USD; for non-members it costs $499 USD. The cost includes application fees, study materials, and the exam fee. It typically takes around six months to prepare for the exam and receive your results after taking it.

2. Certified Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence (CMQ/OE)

Certified Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence (CMQ/OE) is a professional certification program offered by the American Society for Quality (ASQ). The CMQ/OE certification is designed to recognize individuals who demonstrate knowledge and understanding of quality management principles, tools, and techniques. This certification is applicable to all industries, including manufacturing, service, healthcare, government, and education.

To become certified as a CMQ/OE, an individual must pass the exam administered by ASQ. This exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions covering topics such as quality management systems, process improvement, organizational performance excellence models, customer satisfaction measurement and improvement methods, leadership development and team building. The exam takes approximately four hours to complete.

The cost of the CMQ/OE exam varies depending on whether you are an ASQ member or non-member. For ASQ members the cost is $299 USD; for non-members it is $399 USD. Additionally there may be other fees associated with taking the exam such as proctoring fees or travel expenses if you take the exam at a remote testing site.

Once you have passed the exam you will receive your certificate from ASQ which will be valid for three years. To maintain your certification you must earn 30 recertification units every three years by participating in activities that demonstrate your commitment to quality management principles and practices.

3. Certified Quality Engineer (CQE)

Certified Quality Engineer (CQE) is a professional certification offered by the American Society for Quality (ASQ). It is designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated knowledge and experience in quality engineering and management. To become a CQE, an individual must pass the CQE exam administered by ASQ.

The CQE exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions that cover topics such as quality systems, design of experiments, process control, and statistical analysis. The exam takes approximately four hours to complete and costs $450 USD for ASQ members and $550 USD for non-members.

To prepare for the CQE exam, individuals should review the ASQ Body of Knowledge (BoK), which outlines all the topics covered on the exam. Additionally, individuals can take practice exams or attend review courses offered by ASQ or third-party providers.

Once an individual passes the CQE exam, they will receive their official certification from ASQ. The certification is valid for three years after which time it must be renewed with continuing education credits or by retaking the CQE exam.

4. American Society for Quality (ASQ) Certified Quality Auditor (CQA)

The American Society for Quality (ASQ) Certified Quality Auditor (CQA) is a professional certification program that recognizes individuals who have demonstrated knowledge and understanding of quality auditing principles. The CQA credential is designed to provide assurance that the individual has the necessary skills and knowledge to audit processes, products, and services in accordance with established standards.

The CQA credential requires passing an exam that consists of 175 multiple-choice questions. Candidates must complete a pre-exam application process before they can take the exam. The exam covers topics such as quality management systems, auditing techniques, statistical methods, and problem solving.

To get certified as an ASQ CQA, candidates must first meet certain eligibility requirements. These include having at least three years of work experience in a quality-related field or two years of work experience plus a bachelor's degree from an accredited university. Candidates must also pass the CQA examination with a score of at least 70%.

The cost for taking the CQA exam varies depending on your location and whether you are an ASQ member or not. In general, it costs around $400 for non-members and $300 for members. The cost also includes access to study materials such as practice exams and study guides.

Once you have passed the exam, you will receive your official certification from ASQ within 4-6 weeks following your successful completion of the exam. Once certified, you will need to renew your certification every three years by completing continuing education activities or retaking the exam.

5. International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB) Certified Tester

The International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB) Certified Tester is a globally recognized certification program designed to provide software testers with an internationally accepted set of qualifications and standards. It is the most widely accepted qualification for software testing professionals, and it provides a common language for discussing software testing practices across the world.

To become ISTQB certified, individuals must pass an exam that covers topics such as software testing fundamentals, test design techniques, test management, and automation. The exam consists of 40 multiple-choice questions and requires a passing score of 65%. Depending on the level of certification desired, there are three levels of exams: Foundation Level (CTFL), Advanced Level (CTAL), and Expert Level (CTEL).

The cost of taking the exam depends on the country in which it is taken. Generally speaking, the cost ranges from $150-$400 USD per exam. Additionally, some countries may offer discounts or subsidies to help offset the cost.

The amount of time needed to prepare for the exams varies depending on each individual’s knowledge level. However, it is recommended that individuals spend at least two months studying before taking their exams. In addition to studying material related to software testing topics, individuals should also practice answering sample questions in order to get familiar with the format of the exam.

6. Project Management Professional (PMP)

Project Management Professional (PMP) is a certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI). It is the most recognized and sought-after certification in project management. PMP certification is designed to demonstrate to employers, clients, and colleagues that an individual has the knowledge and experience necessary to successfully manage projects.

To get PMP certified, you must have at least three years of project management experience and 35 hours of project management education. You must also pass an exam that tests your knowledge of project management principles. The exam consists of 200 multiple choice questions and takes four hours to complete.

The cost for taking the PMP exam varies depending on whether you are a member or non-member of PMI. For members, the cost is $405, while for non-members it is $555. Additionally, there are fees associated with applying for the certification as well as renewing it every three years.

Overall, it can take several months to prepare for the exam and become certified as a PMP. However, once you’ve achieved this certification, you can expect greater job opportunities and higher salaries in project management roles.

7. Six Sigma Black Belt

Six Sigma Black Belt is a certification program designed to help professionals develop their skills in the field of process improvement. It is based on the Six Sigma methodology, which focuses on reducing variation and eliminating defects in processes. The certification program is offered by various organizations, including ASQ (American Society for Quality) and IASSC (International Association for Six Sigma Certification).

The program typically takes about four to six months to complete, depending on the organization offering it. To get certified as a Six Sigma Black Belt, you must pass an exam that covers topics such as project management, process improvement techniques, statistical analysis, and problem-solving techniques. You will also need to demonstrate your knowledge of Lean principles and have experience working with teams in a business environment.

The cost of the certification varies depending on the organization offering it. Generally speaking, you can expect to pay between $1,500 and $3,000 for the exam and related materials. Some organizations may also require additional fees for training or other services related to the certification process.

In addition to passing the exam, some organizations may require you to complete additional training or submit a portfolio of work demonstrating your mastery of Six Sigma principles before they will grant you certification. This requirement varies from organization to organization so it’s important to check with them before enrolling in a program.

Overall, becoming a Six Sigma Black Belt requires dedication and hard work but can be very rewarding in terms of career advancement opportunities and increased earning potential.

8. Agile Scrum Master

Agile Scrum Master is a role within the Agile methodology of software development. It is responsible for ensuring that the team follows the Agile process, and helps to facilitate collaboration between stakeholders, product owners, and developers. The Scrum Master also works to ensure that all team members understand their roles and responsibilities in order to deliver a successful product.

The length of time it takes to become an Agile Scrum Master varies depending on experience level and prior knowledge of Agile methodologies. Generally speaking, it can take anywhere from one month to three months or more to become proficient in the role.

To become an Agile Scrum Master, there are a few steps you should take:

1) Become familiar with the basics of Agile methodology by reading books or attending introductory courses on the subject;

2) Take an official certification course such as Certified ScrumMaster (CSM);

3) Participate in online communities such as Stack Overflow or Reddit where experienced professionals can help answer questions;

4) Attend conferences or workshops that focus on Agile topics; and

5) Work with experienced professionals who can provide mentorship and guidance.

The cost of becoming an Agile Scrum Master depends on the type of training chosen. Online courses range from free to several hundred dollars, while in-person courses may cost several thousand dollars for tuition alone. Certification exams may also require additional fees ranging from $200-$500 USD.

9. ITIL Foundation

ITIL Foundation is a certification that demonstrates a candidate’s knowledge and understanding of the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL). It is an entry-level qualification that provides an overview of the key elements, concepts, and terminology used in ITIL. The ITIL Foundation exam is designed to test the candidate’s understanding of how ITIL can be used to improve service management processes within an organization.

The ITIL Foundation certification typically takes around 2-4 weeks to complete depending on the individual's learning style and availability. The exam itself lasts for 90 minutes and consists of 40 multiple choice questions. To pass the exam, candidates must achieve at least 65% correct answers.

To get certified in ITIL Foundation, you must first purchase a study guide or online course from an accredited training provider. Once you have completed your studies, you will need to register with PeopleCert, who are responsible for administering the exams for all levels of ITIL certifications. You will then be able to book your exam at one of their approved test centers around the world.

The cost of getting certified in ITIL Foundation varies depending on which training provider you choose and what type of study materials you require. Generally speaking, you can expect to pay anywhere between $200-$1000 USD for the full course including the exam fee.

10. ISO 9001 Lead Auditor

ISO 9001 Lead Auditor is a certification program offered by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). It is designed to give individuals the knowledge and skills necessary to audit organizations that have implemented ISO 9001, the international standard for Quality Management Systems (QMS).

The ISO 9001 Lead Auditor certification requires a minimum of five days of instruction. During this time, participants are taught the principles and practices of auditing and how to apply them to an organization’s QMS. The course also covers topics such as risk-based thinking, process approach, management system documentation, internal audit techniques, corrective action processes, and more.

To become an ISO 9001 Lead Auditor you must have a minimum of two years experience in quality management or related fields. You must also pass an exam administered by an accredited certification body. The cost of the exam varies depending on where it is taken but typically ranges from $500-$1000 USD.

Once certified, you will need to renew your certification every three years by taking part in continuing education activities related to auditing and quality management systems.

11. Lean Six Sigma Green Belt

Lean Six Sigma Green Belt is a certification program that helps individuals develop the skills and knowledge needed to identify and reduce waste, improve processes, and increase customer satisfaction. It is designed for professionals who are looking to develop their skills in process improvement, project management, data analysis, problem solving, and team leadership.

The Lean Six Sigma Green Belt program typically takes 4-6 weeks to complete depending on the provider. The program consists of online or classroom instruction as well as hands-on practice with real-world projects.

To get Lean Six Sigma Green Belt certified, you must first complete a training course from an accredited provider. Once you have completed the course and passed the exam, you will receive your certification.

The cost of Lean Six Sigma Green Belt certification varies depending on the provider but generally ranges from $1,000-$2,000 USD.

Do You Really Need a QA Director Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on your individual career goals and ambitions. If you are looking to advance your career in the field of quality assurance, then a QA Director Certificate might be beneficial. This type of certification can provide you with the knowledge and skills necessary to become an effective leader within the Quality Assurance department, as well as demonstrate to employers that have taken the time and effort to learn about best practices in quality assurance.

However, if you are already working in the field of quality assurance and are not interested in becoming a QA Director, then a certificate may not be necessary. You may still benefit from attending seminars or workshops related to quality assurance, but these will likely be more focused on specific areas of expertise than an overall certificate program. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide whether or not it is worth investing in a QA Director Certificate.

Related: QA Director Resume Examples

FAQs About QA Director Certifications

Q1: What is a QA Director Certification?

Answer: A QA Director Certification is a professional certification that recognizes an individual’s expertise in software quality assurance (QA) and testing. It demonstrates knowledge and experience in the field of software testing, as well as the ability to lead teams and manage projects.

Q2: How do I become certified as a QA Director?

Answer: To become certified as a QA Director, you must pass an exam which assesses your knowledge of software quality assurance and testing processes. You must also demonstrate experience leading teams and managing projects.

Q3: What topics are covered on the QA Director Certification exam?

Answer: The topics covered on the QA Director Certification exam include software development lifecycle, test planning and design, test execution, defect management, process improvement, and team leadership.

Q4: How long does it take to become certified as a QA Director?

Answer: The time required to become certified varies depending on the individual. Generally speaking, it takes several months of studying to prepare for the exam. Once you have passed the exam, it typically takes around 6-8 weeks before you receive your certification.

Q5: What are some benefits of becoming certified as a QA Director?

Answer: Becoming certified as a QA Director can help you stand out from other job candidates when applying for jobs or promotions. It also shows employers that you have both knowledge and experience in the field of software testing, making you more attractive to employers looking for experienced professionals. Additionally, many organizations offer bonuses or salary increases for employees who hold certifications in their field.