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Become A Senior/Lead Developer

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Working As A Senior/Lead Developer

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

  • $140,623

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior/Lead Developer 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 Senior/Lead Developer

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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Senior/Lead Developer jobs

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Senior/Lead Developer Career Paths

Senior/Lead Developer
Architect And Developer Solutions Architect Program Manager
Chief Technology Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Architect And Developer Project Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Director Of Information
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Architect Senior Project Manager Director Of Product Development
Director Of Software Development
12 Yearsyrs
Senior Architect Senior Manager Director Of Information
Director, Applications
13 Yearsyrs
Lead Architect Project Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Information Technology Director
10 Yearsyrs
Lead Architect Chief Technology Officer Technical Consultant
Lead Developer
6 Yearsyrs
Project Manager General Manager Technician
Lead Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Development Manager Information Technology Manager Product Manager
Product Manager, Mobile
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Software Architect Chief Technology Officer Senior Business Analyst
Product Owner
9 Yearsyrs
Technology Architect Solutions Architect
Senior .NET Developer
6 Yearsyrs
Technology Architect Data Analyst Data Warehouse Developer
Senior ETL Developer
5 Yearsyrs
Development Technician Project Leader Information Technology Manager
Senior Information Technology Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Technical Consultant Information Technology Specialist Senior Software Engineer
Senior Java Developer
6 Yearsyrs
Software Architect Information Technology Consultant Information Systems Manager
Senior Manager-Systems
12 Yearsyrs
Technical Consultant Network Administrator Systems Analyst
Senior Programmer Analyst
7 Yearsyrs
Development Manager Human Resources Coordinator Business Analyst
Senior Quality Assurance Analyst
6 Yearsyrs
Development Technician Lead Technician Systems Administrator
Senior Software Engineer
6 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Information Technology Project Manager Director Of Information
Vice President Of Information Technology
12 Yearsyrs
Senior Software Architect Director Of Software Development
Vice President, Software Development
11 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Senior Programmer 3.4 years
Lead Technician 3.3 years
Software Architect 3.2 years
Software Engineer 3.2 years
Lead Programmer 3.1 years
NET Developer 3.0 years
Software Developer 2.7 years
Lead Developer 2.5 years
Lead Architect 2.5 years
Developer Analyst 2.5 years
Lead Web Developer 2.4 years
Solution Developer 2.4 years
Web Architect 2.4 years
Contract Developer 2.3 years
Java Developer 2.3 years
Developer 2.2 years
Web Developer 2.1 years
Module Lead 2.0 years
Java Web Developer 1.8 years
J2ee Developer 1.8 years
Junior Developer 1.4 years
Top Employers Before
Developer 7.6%
Consultant 3.8%
Programmer 3.1%
Top Employers After
Consultant 5.2%
ETL Lead 3.1%
Developer 2.1%

Senior/Lead Developer Demographics

Gender

Male

74.1%

Female

22.0%

Unknown

3.9%
Ethnicity

White

58.1%

Asian

27.7%

Hispanic or Latino

8.2%

Unknown

4.7%

Black or African American

1.3%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

23.3%

French

13.3%

German

10.0%

Chinese

6.7%

Danish

6.7%

Norwegian

6.7%

Italian

6.7%

Portuguese

3.3%

Zulu

3.3%

Japanese

3.3%

Mandarin

3.3%

Carrier

3.3%

Hebrew

3.3%

Russian

3.3%

Arabic

3.3%
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Senior/Lead Developer Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

11.2%

More Tech Institute

10.3%

Maharishi University of Management

8.4%

University of Houston

6.5%

New York University

5.6%

Michigan State University

4.7%

Carnegie Mellon University

4.7%

University of Florida

3.7%

University of Maryland - University College

3.7%

University of Kentucky

3.7%

Texas Tech University

3.7%

Georgia Institute of Technology -

3.7%

Villanova University

3.7%

Northeastern University

3.7%

University of North Florida

3.7%

University of Missouri - Saint Louis

3.7%

University of Arizona

3.7%

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

3.7%

San Francisco State University

3.7%

Texas A&M University

3.7%
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Majors

Computer Science

33.2%

Business

8.9%

Computer Engineering

8.1%

Computer Applications

7.5%

Information Technology

6.8%

Electrical Engineering

6.4%

Engineering

5.5%

Computer Information Systems

3.5%

Finance

2.7%

Information Systems

2.1%

Management

2.0%

Mathematics

1.7%

Electrical Engineering Technology

1.6%

Management Information Systems

1.6%

Project Management

1.6%

Mechanical Engineering

1.6%

Economics

1.4%

Communication

1.4%

Education

1.3%

Chemistry

1.3%
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Degrees

Bachelors

45.6%

Masters

36.3%

Other

10.5%

Doctorate

3.5%

Associate

1.6%

Certificate

1.2%

Diploma

1.2%
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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Senior/Lead Developer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Medical Director, Global Development Team Lead Amgen Inc. South San Francisco, CA Aug 28, 2015 $295,000
Senior Software Developer/Team Lead Judge Technical Services Inc. Warren, NJ Jun 06, 2015 $220,179
Senior Software Developer/Team Lead Judge Technical Services Inc. Warren, NJ Jun 06, 2016 $219,135
Senior Software Developer/Team Lead Judge Technical Staffing, Inc. Warren, NJ Jun 06, 2012 $198,265
SR. Lead Drupal Developer Ekuber Ventures Inc. Vienna, VA Jan 01, 2016 $171,134
Senior SAP Abap Development Team Lead Consultants Exchange Management Services Inc. San Francisco, CA Jul 15, 2012 $166,960
Senior Lead Development Specialist HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. Jersey City, NJ Apr 18, 2014 $165,000
Lead Senior Backend Developer Eyeview, Inc. New York, NY May 12, 2016 $160,000
Senior Lead Development Specialist HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. New York, NY May 10, 2012 $158,875
Senior Lead Development Specialist HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. New York, NY May 25, 2012 $158,875
Senior Developer Team Lead for Equity Derivatives UBS AG Stamford, CT Apr 04, 2011 $155,459 -
$200,000
Lead Senior Backend Developer Eyeview, Inc. New York, NY Apr 15, 2016 $155,000
Senior GUI Developer Team Lead Robin Systems, Inc. Milpitas, CA Jan 29, 2016 $155,000
Lead Senior Backend Developer Eyeview New York, NY Feb 22, 2016 $155,000
Senior Lead Developer Insurance Services Office, Inc. Jersey City, NJ Jun 17, 2016 $126,422
Senior Developer-Technical Lead Acumen Solutions, Inc. New York, NY Apr 18, 2016 $125,000
Senior Lead Development Specialist HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. Jersey City, NJ Oct 01, 2011 $122,400
Senior Dotnet Lead Developer R3 Technology Inc. Irving, TX Jun 27, 2016 $120,000
Senior Lead Development Engineer Goodman Manufacturing Company, L.P. Houston, TX Aug 30, 2016 $120,000
Senior Peoplesoft Developer Team Lead AHS Information Services Altamonte Springs, FL Apr 20, 2015 $118,000
SR. Java Web Developer, Team Lead Forrester Research, Inc. Cambridge, MA Sep 19, 2016 $115,000
Senior Developer (US Lead Synthetics Application M Barclays Capital Services Inc. Jersey City, NJ Dec 09, 2011 $115,000 -
$150,000
Senior Lead Developer NCS Pearson, Inc. Iowa City, IA Feb 10, 2016 $103,681
Senior Team Lead, Computer Science Development Group The Mathworks, Inc. Natick, MA May 25, 2015 $103,482
Senior Systems Developer/Associate Team Lead Healthstream.Inc. Nashville, TN Jan 06, 2016 $103,391
Technical Lead/Senior Developer Harbourvest Partners LLC Boston, MA Dec 19, 2011 $102,586 -
$116,417
SR. Developer/Project Lead Insurance Services Office, Inc. Jersey City, NJ Jun 09, 2011 $102,000 -
$105,000
Senior Lead Technical Developer Travelport, LP Englewood, CO Aug 24, 2015 $101,754
Senior Enterprise Developer/Integrator and Team Leader Intelligent Energy Solutions LLC Dunwoody, GA Feb 13, 2015 $101,500 -
$131,800
Senior Lead, Technology Development Accretive Health, Inc. Chicago, IL May 01, 2014 $100,000

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Top Skills for A Senior/Lead Developer

Pl/SqlWebApplicationDevelopmentDataWarehouseXMLWindowsXPSQLServerProceduresArchitectureASPJavascriptUserInterfaceC#.NETHtmlWebServicesUnixAjaxJqueryETLCSSMVC

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Top Senior/Lead Developer Skills

  1. Pl/Sql
  2. Web Application Development
  3. Data Warehouse
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Designed and developed PL/SQL packages and stored procedures using TOAD on Oracle 9i.
  • Key member on Operational Data Store/Data Warehouse team used for marketing.
  • Developed Web Services to communicate to other modules using XML based SOAP and WSDL protocols.
  • Schedule and monitor jobs in Windows XP and Server 2008 Scheduler.
  • Monitor and maintain SQL Server Critical Procedures as well as administrate the SQL server including writing stored procedures and optimizing queries.

Top Senior/Lead Developer Employers

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