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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.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Lead Developer
Top Careers After Lead Developer
Hispanic or Latino7.6%
Black or African American1.0%
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University of Phoenix9.8%
More Tech Institute8.0%
University of Central Florida6.6%
New York University6.1%
University of Texas at Austin6.1%
Pennsylvania State University5.5%
George Washington University5.1%
University of Southern California4.9%
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute4.9%
Arizona State University4.7%
Brigham Young University4.3%
Ohio State University4.3%
Johns Hopkins University4.1%
Rochester Institute of Technology3.7%
University of Washington3.7%
University of North Carolina at Charlotte3.7%
Northern Illinois University3.7%
Wayne State University3.5%
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|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Business Leader, Development and Strategy||Chegg, Inc.||Santa Clara, CA||Nov 19, 2015||$300,000|
|Lead Developer||Utility Data Contractors, Inc.||Walnut Creek, CA||Aug 07, 2016||$283,473|
|FX Development Lead||Strike Technologies, LLC||New York, NY||Sep 24, 2016||$235,000|
|Lead Developer||Loggly, Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Aug 03, 2016||$188,822|
|ETL Lead Developer||Populus Group LLC||Raleigh, NC||Sep 11, 2015||$187,830|
|Lead Mdms Developer||Innovative Systems Group, Inc.||Glen Ellyn, IL||Jan 10, 2016||$185,743|
|Lead Developer||Asap Solutions Group||Dallas, TX||Nov 20, 2015||$182,613|
|Lead Developer||Asap Solutions Group||Reston, VA||Nov 20, 2015||$182,613|
|Lead Netezza Developer||The Matlen Silver Group, Inc.||Charlotte, NC||Sep 21, 2015||$177,395|
|Technical Lead Development Architect||Personalis, Inc.||Menlo Park, CA||Sep 01, 2015||$176,000|
|Lead Developer||Forex Factory, Inc.||Tampa, FL||Aug 16, 2016||$175,000|
|Lead Ecommerce Developer||Levi Strauss & Co.||San Francisco, CA||Aug 17, 2015||$175,000|
|Lead Developer||Forex Factory, Inc.||Tampa, FL||Jan 10, 2016||$175,000|
|Lead Data Quality Developer||Comcast Cable Communications, LLC||West Chester, PA||Jun 06, 2016||$111,925 -
|Lead Developer||Datafloat LLC||New York, NY||Sep 20, 2016||$111,500|
|Lead Developer||Intercontinental Exchange Holdings, Inc.||Atlanta, GA||Sep 15, 2016||$111,500 -
|Lead Developer||Headstrong Services LLC||New York, NY||Aug 09, 2016||$111,405|
|Lead Developer||LPL Financial LLC||Fort Mill, SC||Dec 27, 2016||$111,405 -
|Lead C# Developer||CSG Systems, Inc.||Chicago, IL||Nov 28, 2016||$111,300 -
|Systems Lead/Developer||Friendly Consultants, Inc.||Princeton Junction, NJ||Jun 07, 2016||$111,259|
|Lead Developer||Datafloat LLC||New York, NY||Feb 01, 2016||$111,200|
|Lead Developer||Metaoption LLC||Aventura, FL||Mar 23, 2015||$94,640|
|Lead Developer||American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc.||Phoenix, AZ||Nov 01, 2015||$94,640|
|Development Lead||Accenture LLP||Seattle, WA||Jul 30, 2015||$94,400|
|Development Lead||Accenture LLP||Seattle, WA||Apr 21, 2015||$94,400|
|Lead Developer||Headstrong Services LLC||New York, NY||Aug 15, 2016||$94,000|
|Lead Backend Developer||Hypemarks Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Apr 18, 2016||$94,000|
|Lead Developer||Orion Systems Integrators, LLC||Monmouth Junction, NJ||Jan 19, 2016||$94,000|
|Lead Developer||Orion Systems Integrators LLC||Monmouth Junction, NJ||Oct 01, 2015||$94,000 -
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