Software Developer

Build, test, and market computer software.

Quick Stats


Outlook
Very Good

Salary Range
$54,000 – $133,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Software Developers do?

A computer without software is like a canvas without paint or a light without a bulb. That is: It’s useless.

It’s a Software Developer’s job to bring to life computers, which by themselves are inanimate boxes of wires, circuit boards and keyboard keys. To do that, Software Developers design programs and applications that do stuff, turning useless computers into useful machines. Think of televisions, puppets and books; if they were computers, their software would be shows, strings and stories — and a Software Developer would be in charge of creating them.

Sometimes called a Software Engineer, you’re like a Computer Programmer in that you often spend your days writing source code, which is text that’s written in a special language designed for computers, telling them — like a super scientific game of Simon Says — what to do and how to do it. This piece of your job requires extreme attention to detail and, of course, fluency in computer coding language. It also requires superior organization skills, as software is layered and, in its own way, architectural; if you’re messy, neither computers nor your fellow Software Developers will be able to find what they’re looking for when they need it.

Of course, there’s more to software than coding. In fact, your job encompasses the entire software development process, of which coding is just one piece. For example, you’re also in charge of generating software ideas and coordinating software production, as well as testing, marketing, distributing and maintaining the final product. And after that? Well, it’s on to version 2.0!


Should I be a Software Developer?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.

  • Also known as: Embedded Systems Software Developer, Lotus Notes Developer, Software Designer, Software Development Manager See More

    How to become a Software Developer

    Most Software Developers have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaf9oa&chl=|certificate+%281%25%29|associate%27s+%287%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2875%25%29|master%27s+%2817%25%29|&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,75
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