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Become A Developer/Consultant

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Working As A Developer/Consultant

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Getting Information
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $102,056

    Average Salary

What Does A Developer/Consultant Do

Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.

Duties

Software developers typically do the following:

  • Analyze users’ needs and then design, test, and develop software to meet those needs
  • Recommend software upgrades for customers’ existing programs and systems
  • Design each piece of an application or a system and plan how the pieces will work together
  • Create a variety of models and diagrams (such as flowcharts) that instruct programmers how to write software code
  • Ensure that a program continues to function normally through software maintenance and testing
  • Document every aspect of an application or a system as a reference for future maintenance and upgrades
  • Collaborate with other computer specialists to create optimum software

Software developers are in charge of the entire development process for a software program. They may begin by asking how the customer plans to use the software. They must identify the core functionality that users need from software programs. Software developers must also determine user requirements that are unrelated to the functionality of software, such as the level of security and performance needs. They design the program and then give instructions to programmers, who write computer code and test it.

If the program does not work as expected or if testers find it too difficult to use, software developers go back to the design process to fix the problems or improve the program. After the program is released to the customer, a developer may perform upgrades and maintenance.

Developers usually work closely with computer programmers. However, in some companies, developers write code themselves instead of giving instructions to the programmers.

Developers who supervise a software project from the planning stages through implementation sometimes are called information technology (IT) project managers. These workers monitor the project’s progress to ensure that it meets deadlines, standards, and cost targets. IT project managers who plan and direct an organization’s IT department or IT policies are included in the profile on computer and information systems managers.

The following are examples of types of software developers:

Applications software developers design computer applications, such as word processors and games, for consumers. They may create custom software for a specific customer or commercial software to be sold to the general public. Some applications software developers create complex databases for organizations. They also create programs that people use over the Internet and within a company’s intranet.

Systems software developers create the systems that keep computers functioning properly. These could be operating systems for computers that the general public buys or systems built specifically for an organization. Often, systems software developers also build the system’s interface, which is what allows users to interact with the computer. Systems software developers are creating the operating systems that control most of the consumer electronics in use today, including the systems in phones or cars.

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How To Become A Developer/Consultant

Software developers usually have a bachelor’s degree in computer science and strong computer programming skills.

Education

Software developers usually have a bachelor’s degree, typically in computer science, software engineering, or a related field. A degree in mathematics is also acceptable. Computer science degree programs are the most common, because they tend to cover a broad range of topics. Students should focus on classes related to building software in order to better prepare themselves for work in the occupation. For some positions, employers may prefer a master’s degree.

Although writing code is not their first priority, developers must have a strong background in computer programming. They usually gain this experience in school. Throughout their career, developers must keep up to date on new tools and computer languages.

Software developers also need skills related to the industry in which they work. Developers working in a bank, for example, should have knowledge of finance so that they can understand a bank’s computing needs.

Other Experience

Many students gain experience in software development by completing an internship at a software company while in college.

Some software developers first work as computer programmers and then are given more responsibility as they gain experience. Eventually, they become developers.

Advancement

Software developers can advance to become information technology (IT) project managers, also called computer and information systems managers, a position in which they oversee the software development process.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Developers must analyze users’ needs and then design software to meet those needs.

Communication skills. Developers must be able to give clear instructions to others working on a project. They must also explain to their customers how the software works and answer any questions that arise.

Computer skills. Developers must understand computer capabilities and programming languages in order to design effective software.

Creativity. Developers are the creative minds behind new computer software.

Detail oriented. Developers often work on many parts of an application or system at the same time and must therefore be able to concentrate and pay attention to detail.

Interpersonal skills. Software developers must be able to work well with others who contribute to designing, developing, and programming successful software.

Problem-solving skills. Because developers are in charge of software from beginning to end, they must be able to solve problems that arise throughout the design process.

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Do you work as a Developer/Consultant?

Developer/Consultant Jobs

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Developer/Consultant Career Paths

Developer/Consultant
Management Consultant Senior Consultant Senior Manager
Director Of Enterprise Architecture
14 Yearsyrs
Web Developer Senior Software Engineer
Director Of Software Development
12 Yearsyrs
Management Consultant Information Technology Consultant Information Technology Manager
Director, Applications
12 Yearsyrs
Web Developer Project Manager Program Manager
Engagement Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Software Engineer Business Analyst Product Manager
Product Management Director
12 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Professor Subject Matter Expert Business Analyst
Product Owner
9 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Project Manager Senior Project Manager
Senior Delivery Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Lead Developer Senior Consultant Development Manager
Senior Development Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Information Technology Project Manager Information Technology Director
Senior Director Of Information & Technology
13 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Professor Senior Project Manager Product Management Director
Senior Director, Product Management
14 Yearsyrs
Senior Software Engineer Senior Systems Engineer Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager Product Manager
Senior Product Marketing Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Lead Developer Project Leader Product Manager
Technical Product Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Consultant Adjunct Instructor Creative Director
User Experience Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Architect And Developer Manager Applications Development Application Development Director
Vice President Of Application Development
11 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Development Director Director Of Software Development
Vice President Of Software Engineering
14 Yearsyrs
Senior Consultant Senior Product Manager Director Of Product Development
Vice President Product Development
13 Yearsyrs
Senior Consultant Product Manager Product Management Director
Vice President, Product Management
13 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Engineering Director Director Of Software Development
Vice President, Software Development
11 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Senior Finance Analyst Assistant Vice President
Vice President, Technology
11 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Developer/Consultant?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Lead Developer 2.5 years
Consultant 2.4 years
Project Developer 2.3 years
Solution Developer 2.3 years
Developer 2.2 years
Contract Developer 2.1 years
Junior Developer 1.4 years
Top Employers Before
Consultant 16.7%
Developer 6.3%
Internship 5.9%
Director 4.2%
Manager 3.5%
Teacher 3.2%
Programmer 3.2%
President 2.9%
Top Employers After
Consultant 19.8%
Developer 5.2%
Director 5.1%
Manager 3.2%
President 2.9%
Owner 2.7%

Do you work as a Developer/Consultant?

Developer/Consultant Demographics

Gender

Male

56.9%

Female

40.0%

Unknown

3.1%
Ethnicity

White

58.4%

Hispanic or Latino

14.1%

Asian

12.1%

Black or African American

10.7%

Unknown

4.7%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

37.7%

French

16.6%

Chinese

6.5%

Russian

5.0%

German

5.0%

Portuguese

4.8%

Italian

4.0%

Arabic

3.8%

Mandarin

3.5%

Hindi

2.3%

Japanese

1.8%

Urdu

1.8%

Swedish

1.3%

Turkish

1.3%

Korean

1.0%

Swahili

0.8%

Thai

0.8%

Carrier

0.8%

Hebrew

0.8%

Polish

0.8%
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Developer/Consultant Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

10.5%

New York University

9.5%

Columbia University

6.5%

Johns Hopkins University

5.3%

Pennsylvania State University

5.1%

University of Southern California

5.1%

Arizona State University

4.6%

University of Houston

4.6%

George Washington University

4.4%

Boston University

4.4%

American University

4.4%

Capella University

4.4%

Cornell University

4.2%

University of Washington

4.2%

Harvard University

4.2%

Northeastern University

4.2%

University of California - Berkeley

3.9%

DePaul University

3.9%

Georgia State University

3.5%

Florida International University

3.5%
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Majors

Business

23.7%

Computer Science

12.0%

Management

7.5%

Education

4.6%

Finance

4.6%

Political Science

4.3%

Marketing

4.3%

Communication

4.0%

Psychology

3.9%

Electrical Engineering

3.9%

Human Resources Management

3.8%

Counseling Psychology

3.8%

Economics

3.1%

English

2.7%

Elementary Education

2.4%

Computer Information Systems

2.4%

Computer Engineering

2.3%

Educational Leadership

2.3%

Information Technology

2.3%

Engineering

2.3%
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Degrees

Masters

38.2%

Bachelors

33.8%

Other

13.4%

Doctorate

7.5%

Certificate

4.0%

Associate

2.3%

Diploma

0.7%

License

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Developer/Consultant Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Consultant, Software Development Stantec Consulting Services Inc. Phoenix, AZ Mar 27, 2015 $365,225
Consultant, Software Development Stantec Consulting Services Inc. Fairfax, VA Apr 30, 2015 $365,225
Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant Accenture LLP Raleigh, NC Nov 16, 2016 $193,918
Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant Accenture LLP Rahway, NJ Nov 16, 2016 $193,918
Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant Accenture LLP Boston, MA Nov 16, 2016 $193,918
Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant Accenture LLP North Wales, PA Nov 16, 2016 $193,918
Principal Sap/Tm Development Architect/Consultant GOPA It Consultants Inc. Bellevue, WA Jan 02, 2016 $142,000
Software Development Consultant Dell USA L.P. Plano, TX Nov 30, 2015 $142,000
Corporate Development Consultant Dell Products L.P. Austin, TX Feb 23, 2015 $140,000
Tech Labs R&D Open Innovation Consultant Accenture LLP San Jose, CA Aug 13, 2015 $137,000
Consultant Developer EMC Corporation Southborough, MA Jan 03, 2016 $135,000 -
$148,500
Corporate Development Consultant Dell USA LP Round Rock, TX Aug 11, 2016 $132,000
Corporate Development Consultant Dell USA L.P. Round Rock, TX Aug 17, 2015 $132,000
Systems Development Consultant Xerox State & Local Solutions, Inc. Germantown, MD Dec 20, 2016 $111,092
Software Development Consultant TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation Columbia, MD Aug 31, 2015 $110,000
Systems Development Consultant Xerox Hr Solutions, LLC Rochester Hills, MI Oct 15, 2016 $110,000
Systems Development Consultant Xerox State & Local Solutions, Inc. Union City, CA Oct 10, 2016 $110,000
Software Development Consultant Dell USA LP Round Rock, TX Jun 17, 2015 $109,224
Systems Development Consultant Xerox State & Local Solutions, Inc. Danbury, CT Feb 29, 2016 $109,200
Software Development Consultant Oracle America, Inc. Warwick, RI Sep 08, 2016 $89,814
Technical Infrastructure and Development Consultant (SAP) IBM Corporation Somers, NY Jun 24, 2015 $89,378 -
$114,592
Software Development Consultant Oracle America, Inc. Solon, OH Nov 15, 2016 $88,878 -
$139,133
Requirements Management Tool Develop, Consultant/Lead Blue Shield of California El Dorado Hills, CA Jun 16, 2016 $88,275
Systems Development Consultant Xerox Business Services, LLC Tallahassee, FL May 06, 2015 $87,550
Software Development Consultant Oracle America, Inc. Solon, OH Oct 24, 2016 $87,298 -
$139,133
Consultant-Transaction Processing and Development DFS Services LLC Riverwoods, IL Feb 23, 2015 $86,900 -
$90,000
Consultant/Programmer-Developer Capgemini U.S. LLC South San Francisco, CA Apr 01, 2016 $85,634 -
$98,000

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Top Skills for A Developer/Consultant

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  1. Web
  2. Pl/Sql
  3. Data Analysis
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Developed proof-of-concept project using to translate gas control GUI applications from Visual Basic into web applications.
  • Designed and implement custom archive/purge utility in PL/SQL.
  • Provided critical data analysis, synthesis and root-cause diagnosis on strategic organization capability assessment projects.
  • Observed multiple fluid and viscous fluid exchange administrations during complicated eye surgical procedures.
  • Advised nonprofit organizations regarding formation, restructuring, strategic planning, collaborations/alliances, board governance, and change management.

How Would You Rate Working As a Developer/Consultant?

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Top Developer/Consultant Employers

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Jobs From Top Developer/Consultant Employers

Developer/Consultant Videos

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