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.

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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 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.


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.




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