Detailed analysis of software engineering career path

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Software engineering career path
(image courtesy Google images)

With the pushing in job growth, software engineering has become the most sought job among the various jobs in the country. In this article, I will discuss the Software engineering career path.

There is no doubt that software engineering is the most demanded career options. This blog guide delivers the knowledge about software engineering, various insights towards the career prospects, job preparation, planning advice and review of professional enrichment.

Let’s take step one by one towards this Software engineering career path exploration.

What is Software Engineering?

Software engineering career path
(image courtesy Google images)

 

Software engineering is a branch of computer science which focuses on building and development of system software and application software.

System software engineering deals with programs that utilize computing utilities, operating systems, and User Interface Programs and database programs.

To be professionally fluent in this field, it is of utmost importance to have knowledge of operating systems, software development, and programming languages.

The major four software engineering career paths are

Application Development

This deals with Non-Web-based and problem-solving software development. This branch requires knowledge of programming languages like C# and Java.

System Software Development

Designing and coding of software which runs in the background to support the development of applications. This requires knowledge of programming languages like C and C++.

Web Development

This path deals with the designing of applications or software for running on web browsers. This branch requires knowledge of programming languages like HTML, PHP, and JavaScript.

Embedded System Development

This path deals with designing better computing systems and software for non-computing devices like automobiles. The programming languages required are C and assembly language.

A surge in software engineering career path

Software engineering is the most demanding and fastest growing professional occupation. Silicon Valley has become a hotbed for software start-ups backed by heavy investment.

There are several reasons why software engineering career path is the most sought career path and driving so much investment.

Well! It is mostly clear to a layman that the complexity in technology is growing. People are relying mostly on mobile technology. So the need for software developers is growing.

There is also a specialized section of App developers for mobiles due to the rise in mobile technology and consumer needs. Those developers are also called Mobile App Developers.

Skill and Responsibilities of a Software Developer

There are certain skills required and some responsibilities a person has to undertake while choosing Software engineering career path. Those skills and responsibilities are

  • Need to provide application or software solutions within the stipulated cost and time.
  • They are required to be able to articulate codes in various programming languages like JAVA, C, C++, Python, and Perl.
  • They write programs, test, debug, monitor and document the changes in the computer applications
  • There is a specialized section of a software developer called mobile app developers who develop apps for mobile and smartphone.
  • Recommending and enhancing the changes in a software application.
  • System Software engineers analyze the goal of a concerned department and design customized system software for the department.
  • System software engineers help in establishing interdepartmental communication by monitoring the intranet.
  • Software engineers work is to upgrade pre-existing applications to work on upgraded platforms.
  • Software engineers coordinate system installation
  • Monitor different equipment functioning for meeting project specification.
  • Responsible for system and data security.

New emerging careers in the software engineering career path

For the predictable future, the demand for qualified and skilled software developer will have no end. This demand is strengthened by the economic transformation by computer technologies. With the emergence of smart cities, green technology, Internet of Things and BigData, all the industries are transforming itself into a technological platform.

With such unparalleled growth in a number of industries, the opportunities for a software developer is enormous. The software engineering career path will have bright future.

Software engineering career path will have enormous options in industries like automotive manufacturing, remote sensing, green energy, healthcare, technology, finance, and aeronautics. Job profiles like health informatics engineer, financial software engineer, and automotive embedded software engineer are becoming common these days.

Here are key highlights of some industries which make software engineering career path a most demanded career path.

  • Mobile industry has become an industry of $3.3 trillion dollar
  • Security industry was projected to become $60 billion dollar industry by the year 2015.
  • Robotics has become an industry of $12.3 billion dollars.
  • Cloud computing is an industry of $100 billion dollars.
  • Health informatics is an industry of $6-$7 billion dollars.
  • Big Data is going to be an industry of $125 billion dollars.
  • Internet of Things is going to be an industry of $7.1 trillion dollars by 2020.

Toolset for software engineering career path

Software engineering professionals are skill oriented. They require specialization training for both technical and non-technical areas. Employers seek candidates who are a mixture of universal skills and technical skills. By the term universal skills, I meant soft skills or employability skill. The culmination of both the skill makes an employee a valuable asset to the company. The soft skills which companies seek within a software engineer are as follows:

  • Decision making
  • Communication
  • Critical Thinking
  • Project Management
  • Organization

Although soft skills are important in an industry, software engineers also need to develop their technical skills and industry oriented skills. Technical skills include knowledge of the operating system, programming languages, system architecture, computer hardware, and software. While industry oriented skill mostly depends on the company or industry practices.

So overall we can say Software engineer’s skill set toolkit can be fragmented into five divisions. They are

  • Computing Theory
  • Quality Assurance
  • Product Engineering
  • Management
  • Product Deployment

Computing Theory

It consists of Programming Languages, Software Architectures, Computer Architectures and Operating System Concepts

Product Engineering

It consists of Technological Innovations, Project Audits, Statistical Process Control and Software Testing Techniques.

Quality Assurance

It consists of Software Design, Code Optimization, Debugging Techniques and Software-Hardware integration.

Product Deployment

It consists of User Documentation, Product Packaging, System conversion, Technology Transfer.

Management

It consists of Risk Assessment, Cost Management, Project Planning and Management, Organizational Structure and Behavior.

Software Engineers having good knowledge of programming languages are in demand among employers. Some of the programming language skill sets which employers are seeking are as follows:-

  • C
  • C++
  • C#
  • .Net
  • Java
  • JavaScript
  • SQL
  • Net
  • PHP
  • Python
  • Linux

Salaries offered to candidates who followed the software engineering career path

The need for software engineers is growing and it will continue to grow. This, in turn, created a race among companies to hire the quality manpower. Experience developers are provided six-figure salary in Silicon Valley. Entry level engineers in this software engineering career path are paid in between $68000 to $100000.

The salary continues to rise instead of falling down because of high demand among employers for this field.

However, the earning potential of software engineering career path mostly depends on location, education, experience, industry, certification, and employer. An earning survey conducted by Robert Half International confirms that the income through software development jobs has increased by 6.3 percent in between 2014 to 2015.

As there is pressure among companies to hire talented engineers, many companies struggle to retain their employees. So the employers have come up with the idea of beneficial employment packages for retaining their employees. The benefits offered to employees in these packages are paid time off, medical insurance, dental insurance, retirement benefits and life insurance. These benefits are quite traditional. Other than these companies provide other types of benefits such as subsidized training opportunities, on-site cafeterias, work-at-home options, flexible work hours.

Many technology companies have started providing on-site perks, travel bonus, paid parental leave, on-site fitness facilities to attract, retain their employees and to keep them happy.

Some salary data

The average salary is $90,000 in the US for a software developer.

Here are some salary data of various software developer job profiles in the US.

Software QA Engineer                       :               $77,000

Senior Java Engineer                         :               $109,000

C++ Software Developer                  :               $83,000

Principal Software Engineer          :               $104,000

Software Engineer                              :               $90,000

Web UI Software Developer          :               $104,000

Applications Software Engineer  :               $91,000

Lead Software Engineer                  :               $98,000

Systems Software Engineer           :               $91,000

Android Software Engineer           :               $96,000

PHP Software Engineer                   :               $91,000

Senior Software Engineer              :               $96,000

Firmware Engineer                           :               $92,000

Objective-C Software Engineer    :               $96,000

Perl Software Engineer                   :               $93,000

Java Software Engineer                  :               $95,000

Mobile Application Developer    :               $94,000

Ruby on Rails Software Engineer:             $94,000

Python Software Engineer            :               $94,000

Required educational qualification for Software Engineering Career Path

 To be software engineer a person require holding a bachelor degree in software engineering, computer science, computer programming, software development or various programming-centric field of study.

When companies hire for a manager position in the field of software engineering, they seek a portfolio consisting of live links to best applications and software development projects or well-documented samples. So having a portfolio is a good strategy for marketing your skills.

Software engineering career path: the job outlook and job seekers guide

The job outlook

 It has been confirmed by firms like Robert Half International that employment opportunities for software engineers will grow about 14% from 2014 to 2024. Software engineering career path is the fastest growing career path. There will be demand for software developer whenever there is a technological advancement. The adoption of virtualization technologies has carved the demand for application developers who have the knowledge or potential to develop secure and effective web-based software.

Also, the adoption of sophisticated data processing methodologies into various systems like government, healthcare, business, telecommunications, and other industries will always fuel the demand for a software developer.

The proliferation of mobile and wireless technologies will always contribute towards growth in Software Engineering career path. As there is a rise in the number of mobile devices along with its capability and accessibility, so is the demand for innovative mobile apps, which in turn leads to increase in demand for talented software engineers.

Mobile Application Development sector can be represented as a job market with large skill gap. This means opportunities are more in number in comparison to a number of professional with the required skill set. As, the number of mobile, smartphones, and tablets are growing, companies are trying to integrate their computer system to the mobile technologies. This will create vacancies for a software developer.

Job seekers guide

As per the above discussions, it may seem that a prospective professional who has chosen software engineering career path can write his own ticket. But it’s not true.

As demand for a job profile rises, so as the competition and expectation of the employees. So it expected from the job interview candidates or the candidates who have chosen a software engineering career path to showcase their raw intelligence, personality, and problem-solving skills during the interview process.

A candidate has to go through multiple rounds before getting the chance for a personal interview in the conference room.

Entry level work experience and real-world professional experience becomes a vital commodity for marketing or branding yourself during the interview process.

Before looking out for opportunity and career potential among the various domain available in software engineering career path, there are few things one should keep in mind for career advancement.

Software engineering career path
(Image courtesy google images)

Internships

 For the chosen software major among the various paths available in software engineering career path, internships provide an introduction to real-world scenarios and a connection to between real world scenarios and classroom led sessions.

Software engineering career path
(image courtesy google images)

Certifications

 Previously certifications were considered as a final stage for getting a job but it’s not applicable in today’s scenario. It is a different scenario. It is just a part of the process. Certificates represent one’s dedication, commitment towards the profession. It gives professional credibility and skill marketability.

Read more about career in Digital Marketing

 

 

software engineering career path
(Image courtesy Google Images)

Networking

 Locating a job doesn’t end at searching through various job portals like naukri.com,monster.com and LinkedIn. It is important to make connections with professionals who are already working in the same domain or with family, friends, and relatives. Sometimes connections can lead a person to better platforms.

The next steps which I am going to depict are steps for applying and interviewing for a career in software engineering career path.

The foremost thing is preparation. Preparation is the key to success. Most of the prospective candidates follow the one-size-fits-all. Well if your thinking process is same, then you are on the wrong path, my friend. Even if your resume consists of good qualification details, then that doesn’t guarantee of getting you a job.

Job preparation process starts, even before sending out a resume.

While sending resume, you should check the job requirements and whether your resume consists of points essential for the job requirements. For example, if the job demands SQL experience but your resume consists of Ruby experience, then it should be checked and the resume should be prepared wisely.

As companies search for professionals who are talented and can easily fit the company culture, so it is wise to research about the position, organization and skill set requirement specific to the position and the industry.

Research the company

Prospective candidates should do a research on company background, history and its position in the market. This shows employers the candidate is well prepared for the position.

Research the position

Prospective candidates should also research the technical requirement which one should come up with to uphold the position.

Brush-up skill

If the skill set demands familiarity with Android technology but you are not in touch with the subjects, then it is suggested to revise the subjects.

Clearing out above three points can make a stage for you to perform better during the interview process. In the interview, the interviewer may check your aptitude, communication skills or programming skill. So you should be prepared. Being prepared is the key to success for the interview in the Software engineering career path.

Conclusion

So here I complete my detail analysis of software engineering career path. If you have any query or want me to write about some other career path or want to give feedback, then write in the comment section below.

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