Software development is a constantly evolving field. As new data becomes available, or new technologies are introduced, old assumptions need to be rethought and even overturned. This means that, in future, there will be an expansive range of jobs within this field. Read on to learn more about what software development involves, how to get into the field as a student and the skills you need to excel as a software developer.
Software development is the process of designing, building and maintaining applications that use software to solve business problems. A software systems developer creates new computer software or modifies existing systems, working with a team in a team-based environment.
If you’re considering a career in software development, the opportunities are endless. You can work on autonomous vehicles, clean energy, renewable energy and battery storage, automotive safety and security, artificial intelligence, home automation systems and many more exciting projects.
Software developers can find employment working on their own or with other programmers. Some work independently as freelancers, while others prefer to work for a specific company or organization. Consider which is best for your career aspirations and lifestyle. Statistically, most software developers are employed at computer companies that create software for business use and personal use (including Microsoft).
One of the main challenges that students face is finding not just any job, but a position with a stable future where they will be able to make use of what they have learnt. The best way to do this is to get into the right tracks early on and ensure that you are taking every valuable opportunity that comes your way. As an undergraduate student, you could participate in events/cohorts with the Stemette Society, complete online courses (such as the ones listed below) and formal qualifications in the field e.g. a degree or apprenticeship. The highest-ranking universities offering relevant degrees include the Imperial College London, the University of Cambridge, and the University of Edinburgh.
Some of the responsibilities of a software developer include creating complex databases for organizations and documenting their application process for future maintenance and upgrades; they work closely with team members to ensure that they understand what the client wants. It requires critical thinking, strong problem-solving skills, keen attention to detail as well as being able to use more than one development language.
The software development career path offers infinite scope for expansion. You’re never short of new programming languages, frameworks and tools, but to truly make the most of them all you must build on top of them.
Encouragement from a female software developer for other women and non-binary people interested in STEAM: “Science and technology have no gender.”
This article was written by Amna Khan, Stemettes Work Experience.