Hardware Test Engineer Career Profile

As a hardware test engineer professional, you are supposed to test computer hardware products before they are introduced in the market. You will be creating procedures to validate a product's functionality so that it complies with the specifications and regulations. And as a hardware test engineer, you have to design a way that can test all components performances of a product.

Basic Duties and Tasks

  • Study the design and specifications of the product or system to be tested.
  • Identify the parameters to be tested to determine its validity.
  • Decide the PCB, RF tests required to check all the components.
  • Write test scripts with ATE to study the products schematics.
  • Establish an electronic circuit design and maintain the test environments.
  • Conduct tests during various stages of development.
  • Evaluate the performance and abilities with respect to system specifications.
  • Precisely and accurately record the results of the test like issues and problems faced with the product in a bug database.
  • Monitor and update the bug reports as and when the re-tests are done after the products are modified as per recommendations.
  • Improvise the test processes to automate relevant test procedures.

In some firms, you may be responsible for designing and developing custom or commercial test equipments. You also may have to develop software tools for testing the products.

As a hardware test engineer, you must be extremely proficient to independently develop or utilize tools to analyze even complex products or systems. You are expected to conduct tests in shortest possible time. You are constantly in touch with external sources or contractors. Thus, you also should possess excellent interpersonal skills.

Work Hours

Hardware Test Engineers employed by organizations work for standard 40 hours a week. But if the product release date is approaching fast, you may have to put in additional work hours to finish the testing process. If you are working independently, then the work timings are entirely dependent on work flow and your ability to handle orders.  

Salary

Hardware test engineers working in an organization as employees are paid a monthly salary where as the engineers working part time or independently paid hourly. The hourly pay for a mid-level engineer is $34.80 to $48 depending on various factors. National average annual salary of a hardware test engineer is around $105,000.

Advancement Opportunities

As a hardware test engineer, you also may be asked to do the software testing. So, you have to develop an expertise in various scripting languages and operating system platforms. This will enable you to operate in realms of hardware and software testing. With enough experience and solid financial backing, you can start hardware testing consultancy independently.

Types of Hardware Test Engineer Jobs

Test engineers have expertise in various test procedures like In-circuit test, Stand alone JTAG test, automated x-ray inspection, Burn-in test, Environmental Stress Screening test and many more.