Previously, video game companies handled this entire process in house, meaning that all of the testing that was conducted on video game at the conclusion of its development process was handled by employees of the same video game company. Video Game Testers were often professionals who only tested games from one video game development house. However, this trend is rapidly changing.
According to news reports from the video game industry, there are plenty of game development companies that are outsourcing many parts of the game quality assurance process to third party contractors. In fact, there are some companies now in existence which specialize in providing game testing to a variety of clients.
Of course there are some reasons behind this. One of the main ones is cost. It is often less expensive for a video game company to hire the services of an external firm, rather than maintain dozens of video game testers working on a full time basis for them. Also, if a PC game is being tested, this will require the acquisition of various different computers, running on different operating systems, having different CPUs and graphics cards, etc. This can put a considerable strain on the budget of any game company, especially the smaller ones. Specialized game testing providers have access to plenty of different hardware already, which will eliminate the need for the gaming producers to acquire hardware which will be solely used for testing purposes.