So you’re thinking about elevating your career to become a software engineer? Excellent choice! Software engineering is one of the most in-demand and highest-paying careers out there today.
In this day and age, technology is king. The software engineer is the mastermind behind the technological advances that make our lives easier and more efficient.
From developing computer programs to creating and maintaining websites, the software engineer is responsible for all things digital.
If you’re looking for a challenging and rewarding career, one that will keep you on your toes and constantly learning, then becoming a software engineer may be right for you. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at what a software engineer does and why you should consider elevating your career to become one.
So What Exactly Does a Software Engineer Do?
When it comes to high-paying, in-demand jobs, few can compare to that of a software engineer. With an average salary of $90,000 in the US and plenty of opportunities for career growth, a career in software engineering is one that is sure to provide stability and financial security.
But what exactly does a software engineer do? In short, they are responsible for the design, development, testing, and maintenance of software applications. Some software engineers work as project managers while others are employed full-time at a company. Others develop on their own or run their own businesses out of their homes.
A software engineer may be asked to develop an application from scratch or to assist in the development of an existing application. They must be able to think critically and creatively, be detail-oriented, and possess strong verbal and written communication skills. These are just a few of the many qualities required to become a software engineer.
Software engineers are responsible for:
They are involved in the development and implementation of software systems.
- Develop software applications.
- Test and maintain software.
- Write Code
- Analyze user requirements
- Research, design and write new software programs
- Create technical specifications
- Task tracking and estimates
- Advise managers on the best way to achieve desired software application goals.
Given the ever-increasing demand for software engineers, now is the perfect time to consider making the switch to this in-demand career. If you’re curious about what it takes to become a software engineer, check out the Deeper Than Tech podcast for tips and tricks on how to break into tech.
It’s not all coding!
While coding is a major part of the job, a software engineer’s duties are more than just the creation of the code. For example, it may be necessary to design a database and create a user interface, and then test the application to ensure that it’s secure and efficient.
Software engineers may also work with other members of a team, such as project managers, testers, and website designers, to ensure that a project meets all the requirements outlined by the client.
Everyone finds their niche in the software engineer world. Some folks will focus more on coding and others will focus on the process. Currently at my job I am more of a technical lead. I help plan different projects and mentor other software engineers on my team. I haven't coded in 3 weeks. Some days I miss it.
What skills do you need to be a software engineer?
One of the most important things to think about when deciding whether or not to become a software engineer is what skills you need to possess. While some software engineers specialize in specific development languages, others are able to work in a range of different areas.
In order to become a software engineer, you’ll need to possess strong communication skills and be able to work independently. In addition, you’ll need to have a solid understanding of software development processes and best practices. As a software engineer, you’ll need to be detail-oriented and have the ability to solve complex problems.
What does it take to succeed as a software engineer?
The skills you need to succeed as a software engineer are largely dependent on the type of company you work for. While some companies will only require that you be proficient in coding, others will also require that you have a strong understanding of the business side of things.
Generally speaking, however, here are some of the skills you’ll need to succeed as a software engineer:
- Strong communication skills.
- The ability to work on your own or as part of a team.
- A can-do attitude.
- Highly developed problem-solving skills.
- A passion for learning new things.
Although software engineering is an in-demand career, there will always be a demand for the skills that software engineers possess. In order to stay relevant in this changing and ever-growing industry, you’ll need to continuously learn new things.
This means that you’ll need to study the latest technologies and keep up with the latest industry trends. In addition, it’s important that you’re constantly refining your skills so that you can stay ahead of the competition.
In the future, software engineers will be expected to have an even wider variety of skills. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, software engineers will be expected to be proficient in a variety of different IT languages, including PHP, Python, C++, and Java.
Front-end or back-end?
Technology experts can work on both the front-end and back-end.
Front-end software engineers work on the user interface or the look and feel of an application. The front-end engineer is responsible for creating the user interface of websites, mobile apps, and desktop software. They often work with a UX designer to create a user experience that is both functional and visually appealing.
Back-end software engineers are responsible for creating the code which makes up the bulk of the application. This means they work with the back-end team to ensure that the code is secure and efficient. They often also work with a project manager or QA to ensure that the applications meet all the requirements set out by the client.
Software Developer vs Software Engineer – what gives?
The first thing you should know about software engineer vs software engineer is the distinction between the two titles.
Software engineers are responsible for everything from the programming, to the project management, to the testing and bug fixing.
Software developers are focused on creating a product while software engineers focus on the product’s underlying architecture and stability.Shhhhh! I "stole" this definition from online. But honestly don't pay too much attention to the names, I use them interchangeable with other all the time. Not that many people who build software care. We care more about leveling (entry-level, mid-level, senior, staff++), since that determines our pay scale.
Industries that employ software engineers
Based on the job description there are many software engineering jobs out there. The industry and specific occupation that you will be in depends on the company or organization that you work for. You can find a job in any industry, from banking to video games to healthcare. It’s not necessarily the industry that you’re in that determines your salary, but what you do within that industry that can determine your salary. Below are a few of the most common industries that software engineers find themselves working for.
- Banking and finance
- Computers and gaming
- Communications and telecommunications
- Marketing and advertising
Why being a software engineer is rewarding
Coding is a fun and rewarding activity. You can work on your own schedule, create your own hours, and you can make a living doing it. It’s the perfect work-life balance.
The technology industry is diverse and ever-changing. If you’re looking to stay up to date on the latest trends and release cycles of the industry, you’ll find it in the software engineering industry.
If you’re in the market for a new job, you’ll find that there are countless opportunities to work for different tech companies. From startups to Fortune 500 companies, there are many roles available.
Is it hard to get a job as a software engineer?
A software engineer’s duties, which can vary from one role to another, are constantly growing. New software projects are being developed every day, and the need for software engineers to work on these projects is growing. Due to the high demand of this in-demand career, many software engineers are finding it difficult to break into the field.
That’s why it’s important to understand that becoming a software engineer is not a fast and simple process. The competition for these positions is fierce, and the salary is not the biggest incentive.
Still not sure is software engineering is right for you. Take my free quiz to find out which tech career path you should follow.