With the growing demand for software engineers, software development has become the most desirable career path for people with the right programming language knowledge, technical skills, soft skills, and hands-on experience. Software developers are highly sought out by recruiters for roles such as front end engineer, backend engineer, junior developer, cloud service architect, and many others.
You may be wondering, however, how to get a job in software development. Luckily for you, acquiring the necessary software development skills to land these high-paying software development jobs isn’t as difficult as it may seem. There are many avenues you could take, many of which we’ll explore in this article.
What Is Software Development?
Software development is a process of analyzing user requirements, then building, designing, developing, and testing a software program, website, or application that can satisfy these requirements. Software developers and engineers use a variety of programming languages to design software or applications that allow users to execute specific tasks like watching a movie, playing a game, or building a spreadsheet.
Software engineers have a variety of daily tasks they must accomplish, including creating code for new software using programming languages and performing maintenance on existing systems. They also build new source projects and improve already existing software programs, among other duties.
Software Development Job Outlook
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment of software developers, software quality assurance analysts and testers, and other related jobs will grow by 22 percent between 2020 and 2030. The tech industry is growing rapidly due to the an increased reliance upon information technology.
The BLS projects 189,200 job openings in the software development field within the next several years, which indicates that software engineers have a very bright future, thanks to the myriad of opportunities that will be available to them.
What Education Do I Need to Become a Software Engineer?
If you’re an aspiring software developer, you should get a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or a related field of study. Some employers demand that you hold a degree in software development. However, you can also learn some, if not all, of the required theoretical knowledge and programming skills at reputable bootcamps.
Can I Get a Software Development Job Without a Degree?
Yes. You can get a job in software development without a degree, although it may be more difficult. Associate degrees from colleges or certificates from bootcamps can also prove your adequate experience and knowledge to potential employers.
Can a Coding Bootcamp Help Me Get a Job in Software Development?
Yes. Coding bootcamps can help you get a job in software development as they often have a faster turnaround rate and offer stronger career services than the more conventional learning options. Bootcamps prepare you for software developer positions, using a more practical learning structure where you spend more time developing hands-on experience.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Job in Software Development?
Typically, it takes several months to a couple of years to get a job in software development. The amount of time required to get a software development job depends on how qualified you are for the job and the company. Do you have the required professional experience, programming skills, soft skills, and problem-solving skills? If not, how long will it take you to hone them?
On average, it can take up to six months to get hired in the software development field, but hiring processes differ from company to company. Some take longer than others due to the extra training they require of job seekers, which is usually related to their level of education and knowledge of functional programming, among other factors.
Common Software Development Education Paths
As an aspiring software engineer, there are three main paths you can take to pursue your education. Before you make your decision, you should consider your preferred methods of learning, your budget, and your schedule. Below are the educational options you should consider to become a professional in the software development field.
Software Development Bootcamps
Attending a coding bootcamp can give you the opportunity to learn essential job-ready programming skills within a short period of time. Enrolling in a bootcamp can prepare you for an entry-level position. With virtual and in-person options, it caters to those needing a more flexible schedule. Keep in mind, despite the adequacy of bootcamps, some employers will strictly require a college degree.
Most software engineers go to a college or university. According to a survey by Stack Overflow, almost 75 percent of developers have at least a bachelor’s degree or equivalent. Community colleges can offer you standalone courses or a certificate. More importantly, however, community colleges offer associate degrees with which you can either transfer to a university or go straight into the job market.
Software Development Degrees
Although you don’t need a degree in engineering or software development to be a software engineer, most companies prefer applicants with a college degree over those with an associate degree or bootcamp certificate. A degree in software development or any other IT field can land you a job as a software engineer.
Key Software Development Skills to List on Your Resume
When applying for software development jobs, you should include your software development skills in your resume to show prospective employers what you are capable of. These skills comprise both soft skills, such as multitasking and problem-solving, and hard skills, such as computer programming and coding.
Computer Programming and Coding
Programming and coding are the foundation of software development. If you want to land a programming job, coding is the most important thing you should have extensive knowledge of. Coding is the process of writing a set of commands and instructions to be executed by the computer.
Code is written using programming languages such as HTML, Java, C++, and Python. Different languages have different uses, so having some base knowledge in multiple can be beneficial. However, you must be fluent in at least one before applying for any related positions.
You should be able to perform more than one task at a time as you may be required to execute multiple projects within a short timeframe. Tight deadlines require prioritizing tasks and staying organized. Time management skills and multitasking should be included on your resume. This can assure employers that you can handle the pressure that comes with the job.
Coding work often involves a lot of debugging and troubleshooting. You should be able to find the source of errors and be able to resolve them efficiently. Creativity, innovation, critical thinking, and patience can be great assets to you and your career.
Where to Find Software Development Jobs
Job boards like Stack Overflow, ITJobPro, and GitHub, will allow you to easily find software development jobs. In the section below, we will explore these resources in depth.
Stack Overflow is a valuable resource for job postings in the tech industry. It is a popular platform for software developers, as it has over five million users and up to 40 million visitors per month. On this platform, you can look for jobs in your field that interest you and easily share your resume with potential employers.
This is one of the most popular platforms for job hunting in software development, full stack development, front end development, backend development, and many other tech fields. You can find job openings at top companies like Google, Apple, Microsoft, and Netflix on this job board. You can also use the sort button to filter out unwanted search results.
This is a resourceful job board that enables you to find entry to senior-level software development jobs. You can create a profile on the platform and upload your development projects onto your profile. Prospective employers can check your work, assess your skills, and reach out to you if your profile is of interest to them.
How to Prepare for Your Software Development Interview
Software development interviews are notoriously unpredictable and nerve-racking. This is why, when applying for jobs in the field, you need to prepare for them to mitigate any surprises. Below are some common questions you’ll likely be asked.
Software Development Interview Questions
- What programming languages are you most comfortable with? Why?
- When trying to find and fix bugs in a program, what’s your process like?
- What are some of the best projects you’ve worked on?
- Tell me about a situation where you had to deal with a tricky bug. How did you fix it? What was the outcome?
The Five Highest-Paying Software Development Jobs
|Software Development Jobs||Average Salary||Projected Growth|
|Computer and Information Systems Manager||$151,150||11%|
|Computer Network Architect||$116,780||5%|
|Computer Systems Analyst||$93,730||7%|
Computer and Information Systems Manager
- Salary: $151,150
If you have more than five years of experience in the software development field, then you could be qualified for this role. Computer and information systems managers coordinate computer-related operations and lead development teams. They need to have strong time management skills and excellent communication skills.
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Venus, Software Engineer at Rockbot
- Salary: $126,830
Data scientists help companies make data-driven decisions through statistics and artificial intelligence. Their skills are nestled in software testing, machine learning, and establishing reliable software systems or networks for data gathering.
Computer Network Architect
- Salary: $116,780
The infrastructure of a company’s communication network is developed by computer network architects. They build local area networks (LAN), wide area networks (WAN), and intranets. Computer network architects work full time and execute other coding-related roles.
- Salary: $110,140
Software developers use programming languages to design and build software applications and websites based on a client’s specifications. They handle debugging operations and are familiar with coding languages like Java and Python.
Computer Systems Analyst
- Salary: $93,730
Big companies employ the services of computer systems analysts to help evaluate and optimize their computer systems. They stay current with industry trends and implement upgrades over time.
Software Development Career Path
There are many job opportunities in software development. The average annual wage for each role is relatively high when compared to those of other jobs that require similar experience. Most of them offer competitive salaries and job security. Below are some entry-level, mid-level, and senior-level positions a software developer might find themselves in throughout their career path.
Entry-Level Software Development Jobs
- Junior Developer – Junior developers perform basic tasks in software development, such as debugging and code documentation. They maintain familiarity with codebases and improve their general programming skills.
- Associate Engineer – This is a similar role to a junior developer. Associate engineers tend to have a little bit more experience. They report to team leads, who give mentorship and guidance, as they learn more skills and work on real-life software projects to gain essential experience.
Mid-Level Software Development Jobs
- Mid-level Python Developer – These professionals build backend tools for the integration of various systems, as well as for data management. Mid-level python developers have at least two to four years of experience in the field and work in collaboration with data collection and analytics teams.
- Software Engineer – Software engineers apply the principles of engineering to software development. They analyze and modify existing software, use programming languages to design, build, and test applications and websites to meet the needs and specifications of users.
Senior-Level Software Development Jobs
- Computer Network Architect – These professionals plan and design data communication networks and make presentations of network plans to management, along with some other duties.
- Chief Architect – Chief architects play key leadership roles in companies and spearhead the management and coordination of resources and processes towards the release of company software products.
- Chief Tech Officer – They monitor and organize all technical activities needed for company projects, prepare budgets, and ensure the compliance of stated budgets.
Software Development Certifications
Certification maximizes your employability in this field. These are usually only available to experienced professionals looking to boost their skills. Below are the top three certifications in software development.
Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
If you are already experienced in the cyber security field, getting this certification could be great for your career. It’s one of the best security certifications in the market and trains you on security and risk management and communication and network security, among other topics.
Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)
With the rise of cyber crime across the world, this is a key certification for software engineers. It covers ethical hacking, cloud computing, footprinting, and other key topics.
Certified Information Security Manager (CISM)
This certification can help you better understand information security management and information risk incident management. It is similar to CISSP, as both require some years of experience in the tech security field.
Tips on How to Get a Job in Software Development
Working on personal projects during your spare time and including it in your portfolio is a key strategy for landing a software development job. Below are six more professional tips to secure your dream job.
Make a Portfolio
Employers want to know the kind of progress you’ve made as a software engineer throughout the years. Try including three creative projects along with a description of their development process when applying for a position. Using your own website can score you extra points.
Know What You Want
With such a huge variety of jobs in the tech industry, you should have a good idea of the type of company you desire to work with, along with the specific role. Job hunting can be an overwhelming process. By narrowing your search based on your preferences, you can reduce the stress of finding a job.
Prepare for Your Technical Interview
Many tech companies use white-boarding for their interviews. Leave no stone unturned. Practice commonly asked interview questions for software development jobs before going to an interview. This will decrease the chances of being asked a question you can’t answer.
Build a Proper Resume and Cover Letter
Research the company and role you’re applying for. This can help you write a tailored resume and effective cover letter. Avoid copying and pasting templates on the Internet and put in the extra effort to restrict your resume to one page.
Negotiate Without Settling for Less
At some point during your interview, you’ll be asked what your ideal salary is. Don’t sell yourself short. Ensure you know what you’re worth based on what other companies are offering and have an idea of the pay scale for that role.
Should You Get a Job in Software Development in 2022?
Yes, you should get a job in software development in 2022. It is one of the most in-demand jobs with a large variety of positions supported by attractive salaries. Coding is easy to learn and there are many learning methods you can choose from. If you want a high-paying career in tech, you should get a job in software development.
Software Development FAQ
Yes. You can land a software development job without a degree. The higher-paying jobs, however, often require at least a bachelor’s degree to get.
No. It just requires perseverance, dedication, and focus. You can get in through the various education pathways described in this guide.
No. Coding is a part of the process of software development. All software engineers are already programmers or coders. Coding is one of the skills needed to develop software.
No. Software development is a low-stress career. Although difficult clients, tight deadlines, and complex software can be stressful at times, the work is rewarding.
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