What is a Software Developer?

In today’s rapidly evolving and booming technology sector, a software developer is given the responsibility of overseeing the entire development process of computer programs to create optimum software for meeting user needs. Software developers are currently in high demand due to the substantial growth in the number of computer systems and mobile technology that use software. As more and more of our digital world becomes computerized, employment for software developers is expected to skyrocket much faster than average at the rapid rate of 22 percent, thus creating an estimated 222,600 new jobs before 2022. In helping you determine if this is a right career move for you, below we have included a full job description for software developers.

What Software Developers Do

Software developers are the creative minds that are responsible for developing the applications that enable users to complete specific tasks on a device as well as designing the underlying computer systems that allow these devices to run properly. On a typical day, software developers can be found analyzing users’ needs, designing software programs to meet those needs, recommending new software upgrades, creating applications or systems, instructing the programmer to write the software code, guaranteeing software functions appropriately, conducting software maintenance, and documenting application aspects for future upgrades. In some cases, software developers will manage an entire software project from the planning stages through implementation to meet all deadlines and cost budgets.

Where Software Developers Work

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are approximately one million software developers currently employed in a variety of settings across the United States. Although the majority of software developers work in computer systems design and related services, other plentiful job opportunities exist in software publishing firms, corporate headquarters, insurance carriers, computer or electronic product manufacturers, financial institutions, and educational services. Since software development is a highly collaborative process, most developers will spend a significant amount of time working on teams with other professionals who design, develop, and program software programs successfully. Most software developers work full-time with longer than the standard 40-hour work week, but those who are self-employed or telecommute will have added flexibility in creating their schedule.

How to Become a Software Developer

For obtaining successful employment in software development, it is typically required that job candidates possess at least a four-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. In order to build the essential computer skills, the majority of software developers decide to pursue their degree in computer science, information technology, software engineering, electrical engineering, or even mathematics. Regardless of the degree chosen, it is critical that you fill your course schedule with classes related to building software and computer programming. To help advance your career prospects, you may also want to consider earning credentials as a Certified Software Development Professional (CSDP) by passing the certification examination administered through the IEEE Computer Society.

Overall, software developers are highly trained computer experts who are well compensated with an average annual salary of $90,060 for their work in designing, testing, developing, and upgrading software programs to meet user needs in our fast-paced digital world. If you possess strong analytical, communication, interpersonal, critical thinking and problem solving skills with a passion for working with computers, you consider joining the booming high-tech industry as a software developer.

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