Engineering Job Options: Software Developer

At heart, software developers are problem solvers. They use the technological capabilities available to them to develop software that meets the demands of today’s users. Whether it be trivial, or groundbreaking, their contributions help people everywhere better their lives with technology.

In just a short time, software developers have become an integral part of the engineering industry. The complicated and varied demands of today’s engineering projects require software solutions that are flexible, tailor made, and rigorously reliable. Off the shelf software is simply not nimble or advanced enough to meet the needs of engineers. That is why they rely on software developers to create the tools their projects require.

Responsibilities of a Software Developer

  • Programming: Developers write the code that is at the foundation of any piece of software. They use their programming skills to translate the needs of engineers into functional software tools, whether they are entirely new, or modifications of existing software.
  • Testing and Debugging: A new piece of software almost always has unpredictable faults. The software developer is tasked with finding these malfunctions through a systematic process and correcting them in the original code.
  • Maintenance: In order to preserve the utility of a piece of software, developers have to maintain it regularly. This involves applying updates, integrating new technologies, and keeping growing masses of code organized and accessible.

Skills and Credentials Required of a Software Developer

  • Education: Software developers will be required to have a bachelor’s degree in a tech major, typically computer science. Many positions will require candidates to have an advanced degree and training in specialized subjects.
  • Project Management: Developing a piece of software requires planning, oversight, and managerial rigor. Being able to handle the process in a systematic way is just as important as understanding the code involved.
  • Engineering Expertise: Not all software developer jobs will require an engineering background, but all of them will privilege it. The more you understand the goals of engineers, the better equipped your software will be to meet them.
  • Diverse Skill Sets: Software development requires expertise in multiple coding languages, and the ability to learn new ones quickly. Meeting dynamic and unpredictable challenges requires a diverse range of abilities.

The outlook for software developers is bright. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 22.8% growth in employment for software developers in all industries. This far outpaces the national average for all occupations. That same bureau reports that the median salary for a software developer in 2012 was $90,060.

Software developers will play an integral role in the future of engineering firms. If you love the nuts and bolts of software, and have an interest in engineering, this dynamic career might be right for you. Learn more about the in-demand engineering jobs by visiting our website.