Software developers: What exactly do they do daily?
Software developers are the creative geniuses behind your everyday smartphone apps, video games and useful computer programs. They are the creator / designer of a specific program or application on different types of electronic devices, or an operating system that control devices, networks or even other programs. They use various programming languages – depend on the nature and complexity of the project requirements – that involve a great deal of knowledge in mathematics and computer science to complete their softwares. Because the software development field of work is constantly evolving, they must always be learning and adapting to the new technology advancements.
Software developers are responsible for the entire development process of a software program. The process is usually carried out by a team of software developers, with each member performing a particular step of the process and a manager supervising the entire project. Software developers usually follow this process when creating or designing a new software :
- Identify and research users’ needs, and then design, write and test the new software to satisfy those needs and ensure efficiency.
- Flesh out the ideas and concepts of the software into a variety of models and diagrams (ex. flow charts) for easy understanding of the development process of each part of a software and how all the parts will work together.
- Perform diagnostic tests and quality assurance (QA) tests on their software before launching it to the market or delivering it to their customer.
- Ensure that a software doesn’t meet any issues through maintainance and updates to fix bugs and correct errors.
- Document every development steps of their projects for future references and optimization / upgrades.
Normally there are 2 types of software developers :
Application software developers :
Designing and creating applications for computers, mobile phones or other devices. They may create various applications software for a specific customer or for a specific purpose, be it entertainment, education, commercial, medical, communications, business… Sometimes they can even work with databases or web applications.
System software developers :
Designing and creating systems for various electronic devices to function properly. They may create operating systems that we often see on our computers or mobile phones, or build operating systems and network distribution systems particularly for companies or organizations. They may also design the interface of each system which allow users to interact with their devices.
- Computer science knowledge: know how to use and apply various coding languages, as well as lastest technologies and operating systems.
- Problem-solving skills: being able spot and identify errors in an entire application or system, and is capable of fixing them quickly.
- Flexibility and adaptability
- Logical thinking and multitasking skills
- Communication skills: Being able to work and collaborating with other software developers and programmers, as well as communicating with superiors and updating clients on the status of the project.
The Software Developer position demands a lot of complex thinking and dedicated work. Competition in this field is intense and companies usually want to hire the best invidual possible. Large companies prefer people with some years of experience working in the IT field, and a bachelor’s degree in either Computer Science, Technical Information or Software Engineering. Although the need for software developers in companies and corporations is ever-increasing, self-employment and freelance work is becoming more and more common in this field.
Software developer salary:
According to the BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics), the median annual salary for systems software developers in 2017 was $107,600. while the number for software applications developers was $101,790.