What does a software developer do?
Do you have a favorite game that you play on your computer or a program that you use every day at work? A single software developer or an entire team of developers created it. These professionals take both their own ideas and the ideas of others and figure out how to turn them into programs and/or apps. They are often responsible for tracking and analyzing market data to determine a specific need in a population or group. Software developers then look for programs that meet those overall needs. They can also design the systems that allow programs and games to run. As a software developer, you will need to test any program you create before it launches to look for possible bugs and glitches.View Jobs
What is the average salary of a software developer?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) surveys the salaries of software developers along with compensation for those with similar occupations, including software testers and quality assurance analysts. It reports that the median salary of a software developer is nearly $53 an hour or $110,140 a year. Keep in mind that your future earnings will depend on factors such as how much education you have and where you work. When you work for a software publishing company, expect a higher salary plus perks such as new apps and devices that help you design programs. Software publishers pay software developers more than other employers, offering an average salary of more than $120,000 a year. You also have the choice of working for yourself as a freelance software developer. This will require that you pay out of pocket for your health insurance and pay self-employment tax when you file with the IRS.
Working as a software developer
As a software developer, you can choose between full-time positions with eight-hour workdays and freelance positions that let you set your own hours. Developers serve an important role because they supply their clients and the public with the popular programs they need for work and play. They also test those programs to look for potential problems.
What are the responsibilities of a software developer?
As a software developer, you meet with clients to go over their needs and come up with ways to help them. This often requires creating a list of possible programs or features that go along with a specific program. The client always has the option of asking for more details or changes, which can lead to multiple meetings before you sit down at your computer to develop the program. You will also look for problems with existing software and find solutions to those issues. Software developers often work on teams in which different members handle specific parts of a program. They then test the parts to make sure they work together correctly. Other responsibilities of a software developer include:
- Working with coders to ensure they use the proper coding in programs
- Keeping track of the program in all phases and staying alert for problems
- Getting feedback from anyone who might use the program
What type of equipment do software developers use?
As a software developer, you will use computer equipment to help you program and test your work. The most important tool at your disposal is your computer itself. Depending on where you work, you may receive a company computer, keyboard, mouse, and audio equipment that you can only use in the office or one that you can also take home. Your computer will come loaded with tools designed to help you build new programs. Coding software allows you to write the code that the program needs, monitor any changes to that code, and save previous versions. You will use performance analysis tools later in the process. These tools help you track how well the program performs and compare its performance to that of previous editions. As a software developer, you also need to be comfortable using debugging software that looks for and fixes flaws in the code.
What is the work environment of a software developer?
Most software developers work in office settings. They do not always work set hours but do work for at least 40 hours a week. Software publishers, manufacturers, and private companies are the top employers in this sector. Many employers now offer work-from-home opportunities for software developers to keep up with changes and demands in the tech field. This gives you the option of making your home in a city with a low cost of living while earning the higher salary paid in areas with a high cost of living. If you work from home, you will clock in every time you work via a program on your computer. Some employers also require that you use a webcam and Zoom or similar app to attend meetings with clients and coworkers. If you work in an office, expect to travel occasionally to meet with your clients or team members working on the same project at a different location.
Who are your colleagues as a software developer?
As a software developer, you can look forward to working both on your own and with others. Your colleagues include coding and programming professionals. These experts help you translate the ideas you worked out with your clients into fully formed programs. They look for errors in the code and find problems you missed. You will also work with other software developers, as many employers use teams. Multiple meetings are sometimes necessary to make sure everyone is on the same page. Software developers also work with clients to create their software to their specifications.
What is the work schedule of a software developer?
Your work schedule as a software developer depends on your employer. Most employers ask that you complete a 40-hour workweek during business hours, typically 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you're working on a project with a tight deadline, expect to spend more time in the office (or more time working from home, if you work remotely), perhaps until 6 or 8 at night to finish the program on time. Start-up companies ask developers to work longer hours to find new clients and keep current clients happy.
What is the career outlook for a software developer?
The BLS reports that software developers are among the most in-demand of all professionals. Projections call for the need for software developers to grow by 22% during the decade ending in 2030. Employers are expected to hire more than 400,000 software development positions. One reason for this increased need is the number of older workers who will retire by the end of this decade. The need for software developers will grow at a faster rate than all other computer occupations and many other jobs. When you have the right skills and education, you can easily find a position as a software developer.
Software developers and automation concerns
Though some worry that automation will replace human software developers, computer programs can only do so much. You can use a program to schedule appointments and keep track of program codes, but no program is capable of accomplishing everything a software developer does. Improving your skills and staying up-to-date on technological advancements are the best ways to ensure that you remain a sought-after job candidate.
What are the advantages of working with Spherion as a software developer?
When you choose to work with Spherion, you'll enjoy advantages not available anywhere else. Do you want a job that offers the flexibility to work from home and spend more time with your family? Maybe you have a medical condition that prevents you from working in a standard office job. Spherion helps you find positions that use your skills and offer the flexibility you need. You have the chance to sign up for training opportunities to go beyond what you learned in school, plus a contact person who is always ready to answer any concerns or questions you have. At Spherion, you'll find a wide range of software developer positions in cities across the country as well as jobs close to home.
What education do you need as a software developer?
To become a software developer, you need a minimum of a bachelor's degree. While some employers may take a chance on you if you have an associate degree, you'll have a hard time finding a position without completing some college courses. Employers look for software developers who have studied computer and information technology. It's helpful to have a strong background in mathematics or engineering, too. Consider choosing a minor in one of these fields as you work on your degree. To get a leg up on the competition, look for internships with programming or software companies. Many software companies hire unpaid interns to work during the school year and in the summer. Though some internships involve basic tasks such as running errands and filing forms, these opportunities help you make connections and learn more about the industry. Employers will look favorably on the internship experience you show on your resume.
Skills & competencies
When you build your resume to apply for software developer jobs, make sure it highlights the skills you have that are valuable in this industry. You need to show that you are familiar with:
- Working with computer databases
- Testing procedures
- Debugging operations
Employers also look for software developers with good time management skills and strong attention to detail. As you will work with both colleagues and clients, you need some public speaking experience in order to confidently convey your ideas and defend your changes to a program. You will also need the ability to work with different groups in various situations.
What does a software developer do?
A software developer provides help and support with the creation of new computer programs. In this role, you are responsible for identifying the needs of a client or group and creating a software program that fulfills those needs. You will also test programs and create systems.
How can I become a software developer after graduating from high school?
You do not need to do anything special in high school if you want to work as a software developer, but you may find it helpful to take some extra science and mathematics classes. Once you have your diploma, enroll in a computer degree program at a college or university. There are many degree programs today that allow you to study computer science from home.
How do I become a software developer?
Becoming a software developer is easy when you work with Spherion to find a position. Not only can you search for open positions in any city of your choosing, but you can apply for all of those jobs online. To apply, you can either submit a resume you already have or answer questions and fill out boxes to share your information. Submit an open application when you're ready to apply.
What else can a software developer do?
When you study to become a software developer, you can also use your degree to work in software engineering. Software engineers have similar job duties. Many also work as mobile developers. Mobile developers primarily optimize websites for smartphone users, but they also create apps that others can use on the go with their devices.